Tips for Senior Pet Care
As the fur around their nose turns white, their coat gets a little coarser, and they seem more content to rest than to play, our senior pets will always be our fur babies.
Senior pets need special attention when it comes to evaluating how your dog is feeling and acting. We at Run Those Dogs put together some helpful tips you can use throughout your day with your senior pet.
If your dog is slow to wake and wiggle due to stiff joints, take some time each morning to gently massage her joints. Give a nice rub of the ears and feet to get a jump-start on the day.
Be sure to check and see if your older dog is cold. Body temperature changes can indicate poor blood circulation. See if she snuggles in warmer parts of the house and provide some blankets to keep her cozy.
Sometimes a diet change is in order. Changing their food to higher fiber with a reduced fat and calorie “senior” formulation can help keep your dog ready for the day and consider a holistic approach. You can also ask your vet to help you choose the right food and keep track of your dog’s weight.
For some bigger dogs it can also be helpful to put the food dish at chest level in order to help her eat without the neck strain.
Exercise. Slow Down – Don’t Stop!
We want to keep our friends healthy and while they may be content to lay on your lap, it’s still crucial to take them out for a walk. You might have to slow down your pace or shorten walks if your dog gets tired more easily. But skipping the exercise altogether won’t help anyone.
Going to Bed
As we get older sometimes our beds aren’t as comfy. We may need to upgrade to something that will support our aging bones. This is true for our dogs too. Softer bedding might help keep your pup rested.
Teaching an Old Dog a New Trick
The hardest part of realizing your dog is growing older is watching her struggle to jump on the couch, run to get that ball one more time, or even hop into the car. It might be time to reteach your pup to stay down or give her a boost with a little step stool to the couch or car.
For our Senior Feline Friends
The same concepts apply to cats! Continue to watch for changes in your cat’s habits. Know how much your cat is eating, watch weight changes, play slower and not less often, and of course, snuggle and love them with all your heart.
Visit the Vet
Scheduling regular checkups and maintaining regular dental care will help your pet stay healthy and happy into their senior years.
Watching our fur babies become older is tough, but with some help and extra loving, you’ll find that spark of the puppy and kitten you remember!