Aging is a natural part of life, and all living beings reach seniority at some point so as our dogs. However, you should always remember that senior dogs require different care than puppies.
As a dog ages, it becomes less active, its vision and hearing deteriorate, and it becomes more vulnerable to several ailments. Even so, growing old isn’t a death sentence, and dogs can enjoy their golden years in good health.
Because not all dogs reach senior status at the same age, it is critical to recognize the early indications of aging and take the required precautions to keep your dog healthy. We’ll provide you with some pointers on how to care for a senior dog to assist you in this endeavor.
1. Maintain Your Senior Dog’s Activity
It is critical that dogs get lots of exercises as they get older. They will lose it if they do not move it. Metabolism is driven by muscle mass, and dogs who lose muscle mass will age faster than others.
It could be a clue that something is wrong if a dog’s activity level significantly declines over time. Old dog owners should be on the lookout for subtle indicators of pain and consult with a veterinarian to develop an effective treatment plan.
2. Regular Veterinarian Visits are Important
Regular veterinary care is a crucial habit to cultivate. Only around 14% of older animals have their health checked regularly, as recommended by their veterinarians.
Senior dogs should have a health exam every six months, according to the AAHA. Early disease detection is critical; routine testing is necessary to establish baseline levels and ensure that no clinically silent health problems exist.
Your veterinarian is also qualified to assess your dog’s health and well-being and give tailored advice to keep your senior dog healthy and active.
3. Maintain a Healthy Diet
It’s all too easy to start spoiling your pet as they get older, but it’s now more crucial than ever to keep their food healthy and balanced.
At this age, too many calories can cause inflammation and weight gain, both of which can reduce your dog’s quality of life.
4. Maintain Their Hydration
It’s up to you to make sure your aging dog drinks if they lose track of their water dish or are physically unable to get to it. Bring them the water. It’s possible that you’ll have to hold the dish in front of them and wet their mouth to get them to understand.
It is also recommended adding sodium-free chicken bouillon to the water to make it more interesting. Both the perfume and the taste will entice your pet to consume. They won’t mind if you add a half-cup or so of water to their diet (dry or canned) to help them stay hydrated.
5. Take Care of their Oral Health
It is common to observe elderly dogs with a few missing teeth because they do not receive regular dental treatment during their adult years. Dental hygiene is an important part of grooming that should be practiced on a regular basis, starting at a young age.
Brush your dog’s teeth at least once a day, and if he doesn’t like it, try bribing him with dental treats. Once a year, you should take your dog to the vet to get their teeth cleaned by a professional.
6. Prepare Yourself
Losing a pet partner is one of life’s most traumatic experiences. When we think about their death, our natural reaction is to push the concept out of our minds.
Unfortunately, this can leave you feeling unprepared and unsure of your options for aftercare and what to do if your pet passes away unexpectedly. You may experience undue tension if you don’t have a plan during a time when you should be grieving and remembering a magnificent life well lived.
It’s crucial to appropriately honor your dog after he or she passes away. Consider aquamation services to cherish your departed fur friend.
Senior dogs have less energy, have more difficulty walking, and are more likely to acquire cataracts or hearing loss, among other problems. This may appear frightening, but these changes do not occur overnight, and your dog and you will have time to adjust to new situations.
Senior dogs may have unique demands that must be satisfied, and you will need to learn how to care for them. Your dog’s health will be maintained, and they will live a happy life for many years with adequate old dog care and attention.