If you’re a pet owner and dog lover and you’ve had your senior dog from a puppy you’ll know that there are special needs that transpire as they get older. Here are some top tips on how to optimise your care for your pets, and even how to adapt your home to ensure a comfortable journey into their mature years.
4 Tips for Caring for Senior Dogs
When you take into account that 44% of households in the United Kingdom are home to pets, it’s safe to say Britain is a nation of animal lovers. If you’re a pet owner and you own a dog, it’s only natural that you will want to do everything you can to ensure they’re happy, healthy, and safe.
Unfortunately, our dogs can’t stay the same age forever, so as they enter their senior years, they will have different care requirements when compared to those of a younger dog. To ensure your pooch gets the most out of their final years, here are four tips on how to care for senior dogs.
Schedule Regular Visits with Your Vet
Even if senior dogs appears healthy, they may have underlying diseases and health conditions that can shorten their lifespan. It’s best to plan to take your dog to the vet at least once a year so you can be confident that they are in the best shape possible.
Frequent trips to the vet can rack up a huge bill, though, so taking out pet insurance can ease the amount you have to pay. You can check out pet insurance comparison websites to pull in the most competitive quotes for pet insurance.
Watch Your Dog’s Diet
If you’re the type of owner that likes to give your dog leftovers, you may want to think twice about continuing. As your dog gets older, it’s important that you feed them a high-quality diet. Mature dogs tend to have food issues, which can include problems chewing, digestive problems, and lack of appetite. If you aren’t sure what sort of dietary changes you should make, it’s best to consult with your vet. There are numerous supplements such as fish oil that can be used to alleviate joint pain. There are certain foods that you should never give to your dog (no matter how much they beg!), as they can prove fatal.
Exercise Your Senior Dogs Mind and Body
As a dog owner, there is nothing more rewarding than getting out in the open air and taking your pooch for a walk. Unfortunately, just like humans, senior dogs struggle with their mobility. If your aging dog is having difficulty performing activities that they used to enjoy, or you notice they’re in pain, it’s best to take things slow and take your dog out on short, gentle walks. Your dog’s brain needs tons of exercise too, so purchasing stimulating toys like a food puzzle can help keep your dog alert and on the ball.
Adapt Your Home for your Mature Pet
If you’ve had your pet dog from a puppy, it’s likely that you will have made adjustments to your home over the years to keep them safe. As senior dogs enter their later years, there are small but subtle changes that you can make to your property to make your pooch’s life easier. Perhaps you’ve installed a special ramp or stairs so they don’t have difficulty roaming around or keeping their food and water in an area that they can easily access. There are lots of changes that you can make for the better.
While taking care of an older dog may require a little more work than you’re used to, caring for your life companion is deeply rewarding. No matter what you take on board, as long as your dog is happy and healthy, that’s all that matters.