As you age, your daily routines, needs, and behavior change. Well, the same is also true for your furry pets. Unfortunately, dogs have much shorter lives than humans.
Upon reaching the age of seven, your pet is already considered senior. This is because, on an average note, they are already deemed 56-year-olds in dog years. A great example of this is a French Bulldog.
And so much more when your pet reaches ten years and above of age as this is already considered as geriatric. Accordingly, and just like any senior individual, your senior and geriatric furry pets need guidance, assistance, and care more than ever.
Here are some tips that you may want to check on how to properly take good care of senior pets, especially if you are a senior fur-parent:
10 Tips for Taking Care of a Senior Dog
1. Allow Your Senior Pet to Be Active
Allowing your senior pet to get active is very beneficial to its health. Although it may not be as active as it used to during its younger years, encouraging your senior dog to exercise regularly will help its overall health condition.
This will help you as a senior individual as you will get to be active as well, which will also benefit you and your health.
Tip: If your dog struggles on long walks or is showing signs of mobility issues, a dog wheelchair can help keep them active.
2. Make Your Home Senior Pet-friendly
Senior pets are very susceptible to behavior changes. As they age, their strength decreases similar to human beings. This is why it is a must that their surroundings, especially their homes, will not cause any inconvenience on their end.
Instead of placing the plates and drinking cups on the second floor, try moving it on the ground for easier access.
If in case that the pet will be with the senior in an assisted living community, there are several retirement communities that allow pets today. Also, they have certain programs for this that will benefit both the pet owner and the dog.
3. Provide Your Senior Dog with Regular Exercise
Regular exercise is very much needed by senior and geriatric dogs. This is because they need it to become much healthier, just like any aging individual.
These exercises may include walking, strolling, and running around. In addition to helping them maintain a healthy weight, regular exercise helps to keep dogs happy and feeling better. Also, ensure that you are not engaging your pets with high-intensity routines as this may put stress on their bodies or cause injury.
4. Provide Your Dog with Better Protection from Weather Extremes
enior dogs are much more sensitive when it comes to weather conditions. While it is generally necessary for pet owners to take good care of their pets in terms of knowing the weather statuses, senior pets may need this more.
So, make sure that they are well-hydrated during the summer season, and well-covered during the cold season.
5. Feed Your Older Dog a High-Quality Diet
Aside from the behavior and strength of the pets, senior dogs also have a change of appetite. And every pet owner, especially seniors, must know this effectively.
Here are some points you may want to regard for your senior pet’s diet:
- Include nutritious foods, like consumables that are rich in fatty acids
- Make vegetables and fruits as their new favorites
- Special dietary needs may need consultation from your Vet
6. Regular Grooming
Regular grooming is also important for senior dogs. Ensure that they are always clean and neat at all times.
But, it is best if you consult this aspect as well to your chosen vet. They will tell you when is the best time to get your pets groomed.
7. Take Care of Your Senior Dog’s Teeth
The oral and dental health of senior dogs may need much more attention now than before during their younger years. This is because there is a huge possibility that they already have developed plaque and build-up, which may result in infection.
As per claims, healthy oral and dental conditions may increase a dog’s life by up to two years.
8. Take Your Senior Dog on Special Outings
Alongside getting active and exercising regularly, you must also make sure that you take your senior pets to trips and outings. Getting your pet out of the house and staying active keeps your dog engaged and excited. This will also eliminate boredom and anxiety on their end.
Also, you will get to bond with them further. Deepening the connection between you and your dog. Which will truly cause happiness for both of you.
9. Annual Physical Examinations
Annual physical examination is very much recommended for senior dogs. Although this is actually a must that every fur parent should do, the care and attention for senior dogs are much more intense given the condition that they are in now.
So, it is only fitting that you have them checked regularly by the vets to understand and track their overall state and condition.
10. Check Your Senior Pet’s Eyes Regularly
Your pet dog’s eye can tell a lot of things about its health condition. Keep in mind, though, that as they age, they tend to develop various kinds of eye conditions. So, make sure that you always inspect their eyes, or have vets checked them thoroughly.
All in all, taking care of senior dogs is not an easy task as they now require much more attention and care. This is much more challenging if the pet owner is also a senior.
Even so, these ten tips and hacks on how to care for your senior pets are very easy and convenient things to do. Hence, check the things that you already do for your pet and start doing the things that you still don’t do for your pet today.