Dog Health & Care

6 Ways to “Care for Aging Dogs”


Ways to care for aging dogs is a growing field. Veterinarians are observing improved responses to age-related health problems among several dog species. Due to these new processes, dogs are living longer than ever before. We can thank science and improved medical facilities available for this.

Care for aging dogs

Simplistically, smaller dog breeds are likely to live more than the larger breed dogs. Around 44 to 56 human years equals 7 dog years (small-44 to large-56). The documented age of the oldest dogs is 29 years. Depending on the breed, you can make out how long your dog will live. Of course, a lot depends on the dog health and what it has gone through.

care for aging dogs
Image provided by http://www.bonkersinstitute.org/simplecanine.html

 

How does aging affect your dog?

The amount of food intake of your dog does not reduce as it gets older, but its activities sure do. Therefore, the majority of its food gets stored as fat. Just like elderly humans, older dogs suffer from various illnesses like indigestion, impaired vision, weight loss or gain.

Their skin also loses its elasticity and they find it difficult to swallow and experience dry mouths. Many times you might need to treat your dog with specific medical treatments to get rid of the disease. Medical treatments can become very expensive if not covered by a proper insurance plan. These pet insurance reviews for aging dogs are helpful while choosing the perfect insurance plan for your furry friend.

How To Care for Aging Dogs

Aging is not as bad as it sounds, especially for your dog. You can ensure relaxed old age years for it with these vet-approved tips, peak ways to care for aging dogs. Knowing the best way to care for aging dogs makes the latter years of your dog a lot easier.

Feed Your Dog Quality Food

Since most of the food gets converted into fat, you should feed your dog with nutrition that is appropriate for its age, suitable to its lifestyle and its current health. The food should not contain substances that may make your dog extremely lethargic and inactive. Work on maintaining your dog’s ideal weight, one of the peak .

Maintain Oral Hygiene

The immunity of your dog may diminish with age. To ensure your dog does not get hold of viruses orally, brush its teeth regularly. If not, find a way of keeping its mouth clean by consulting veterinarians and of course, the internet.

Arrange For Suitable Living Conditions

Learn to provide your pet with everything that is essential. For example, if your dog suffers from arthritis, guarantee warm and soft bedding for the dog and provide it with a padding of blankets or a special warming bed. Along with accommodation, make sure that the navigation of the dog is also easy.

Make Exercise A Part of Your Pet’s Routine

Maintaining your dog’s health should be your primary responsibility. Make the dog perform certain exercises that will not tire it too much. Check out some of the useful exercises for your dog and in case if you cannot do this, hire a professional for the job.

Mental Care

Your dog may experience cognitive dysfunctions. It may become mentally inactive. Keep routine interactions with your pet to avoid this from happening. Consult your vet for any new change in its behavior.

Veterinary Care And Vaccinations

Increase the frequency of visits to the vet’s clinic. Your dog’s medical needs change with age. Therefore, make sure you have your dog properly vaccinated. It is necessary for you to know everything about your dog’s condition. So ensure that you ask for frequent reports from your vet.

When Should You Euthanize?

aging dogs
Image provided by Susan Combs

 

Euthanizing a dog is very difficult for everyone involved. However, in certain cases, it is truly necessary to release the pet from its pain. Discussing with your vet aspects like the happiness of the aging dog, the quality of life led by it, the pain it is experiencing, the mental health and its mobility can help you determine if euthanasia is required.

 

Biography:

care for aging dogs

This article has been written by Susan Combs, one of our regular readers and a Pet Health & Safety Expert in an animal hospital. She holds a six-year expertise in the fields of animal/pet care — handling, health and welfare. Her specialties consist of maintaining important issues regarding pet health and pet care,  working closely with pet parents to find answers concerning training, grooming and caring for specific breeds of dogs.

Both images belong to Susan Combs.

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1 Comment

  1. July 23, 2016 at 1:36 am — Reply

    Hi Susan,

    Thanks for these tips to care for aging dog. Some of them can be implemented even for a young dog like feeding best quality food, and thus will help later when our dog aged.

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