Tips for Taking Care of an Aging Dog

As we are aware, the aging process isn’t unique to us as people. All our fellow creatures grow old and expertise infancy, adolescence, maturity, old age, and, inevitably, of course, passing. We might not be aware of the many similarities between us and our fellow creatures because we encounter the various stages of life and death. In fact, however, we share much in common- to the point of undergoing similar infirmities, health issues, and disorders as well as physical and emotional limitations and challenges. 

It’s projected that in the United States more than 18 million dogs and 22 million cats are considered “senior citizens”. When is a pet considered “older”? Ordinarily, a cat or a dog older than 7 years is deemed middle-aged. Since a companion animal can’t describe her aches or pains, it is a good idea for your pet parent to carefully watch and pay careful attention to any physical or behavioral modifications (yet subtle) and to take her at least twice a year for a veterinary checkup. Early detection is the easiest means to treat canine or feline illnesses and diseases. Common health problems impacting older pets include: arthritis, cancer, diabetes, liver and kidney ailments, and thyroid issues. Indicators of health issues might be diminished activity, difficulty in getting up, walking, or status, drop in food and water intake, difficulty in breathing, rash, diminished sight or hearing, withdrawing or isolating instead of playing with or interacting with you or other family members, an elevated amount of time sleeping, etc.

It is helpful for pet owners to understand that our animal partners finally have access to health care treatments and procedures, which can help, maintain and improve their health and increase their longevity. Once available only to humans, arthritis medication, radiation and chemotherapy, organ transplants, hip replacements, and even pacemakers are readily available to our pets amongst other medications and treatments.

There are several strategies to help your aging animal company. First and foremost are your continued love, dedication, and attention to him along with your concern for his general good health and well-being. Second, you can address her special requirements by consulting with your vet and determining what prescription and health protocols will be best suited to her specific needs. Thirdly, make certain your pet is eating meals suitable to his age, size, and health issues. Seek advice from your vet before you think about changing to “senior” foods to ensure he receives balanced nutrition without additional calories. Fourthly, keep him well exercised and stimulated. Modify his exercise regime in accordance with his age and any health issues he might have.

Other straightforward ways to better your older pet’s life are to maintain current in your pet’s vaccinations as older pets may be more vulnerable or susceptible to illness; supply proper dental care to avoid gingivitis and tooth reduction; once petting or grooming your pet be aware of any bumps, sparks, sores or parasites; notice any changes in weight (either loss or gain); note any vibration, vibration or seizures; pay attention to any sign that he is experiencing pain.

Your furry friend is faithful, true, and unconditionally loving. Respect him, as he grows old and treats him with as much tender loving care because it is possible to provide. We can find out so much about the aging process by our animal companions as it imitates and mirrors our own in so many ways. Our animal companions are lifelong teachers and guides from whom we could learn a lot of profound life lessons.

Though your household vet is familiar with your pet and can accurately diagnose and treat several issues, some states need technical diagnostics and care so as to safeguard your pet has the ideal outcome and recovery.

At Along Island Veterinary Specialists’ two places, our furry cardiologist offers advanced diagnostic procedures for the evaluation of heart ailments in dogs and cats. To learn more about animal cardiology, visit atlanticcoastvet.com.