Your senior dog might not move as fast as a young puppy, but with specialized veterinary care, you can have many beautiful years together, especially as your pet is reaching his or her senior years. Here are some tips to keep them happy and healthy during these golden years!
Older dogs can be unsteady on their feet. They may slip and injure themselves on hardwood or tile floors. This problem can be easily solved with area rugs and runners. There’s no need to cover up the entire floor, just provide your dog with a safe surface to walk on. It will help increase their confidence and provide a bit more cushion to their aging feet, too.
Making Accommodations for Your Senior Pet
As your pet ages, look through your home through their eyes. You may want to consider keeping them on one level of your home to help ease stress on their bodies from moving up and down the stairs. Your dog may manage the stairs just fine, and then slide on the uncarpeted floor at the bottom. To prevent this, make sure there is an area rug at the bottom of the stairs. Keep an eye out for “trouble areas” that begin to present your pet problems as they are growing older. As their vision may begin to experience difficulties, you may notice them bumping into furniture, or even people. Try being more vocal, and even talking with them calmly before reaching for them or petting them, so that they do not become startled.
Dogs do not usually enjoy taking medication, and there’s a possibility that they may be taking more medications to help them navigate these senior years. Have you ever given your pet a pill only to have him spit it out a few seconds later? Find a tasty treat, preferably one with a strong taste or smell, and slip the pill inside. Plain canned pumpkin, cheese and pill pockets are all excellent choices for this small bit of deceit. Alternatively, dip a dog treat in some peanut butter (Xylitol-free), place the pill on top and offer it to your dogs. Chances are, they’ll gobble it up, pill and all. As clever as you may be, there are pets that are always one step ahead of us! If you have difficulty pilling your pet, give us a call – we have a few more tricks we can share, too!
Hearing Loss in Senior Pets
Older dogs often start to lose their hearing. For this reason, it can be useful to teach them a few hand signals. Teach your dog to sit or stay using words and an accompanying hand signal. If your dog starts to lose their hearing, they will still be able to understand you.
Our Specialty – Integrative Veterinary Medicine
As your faithful companion ages, their joints may begin to ache. Ask us about options to help ease the discomfort. There are many medications, supplements, and even therapies that can make the world of difference In fact, we offer the following integrative therapies:
These are some things that you can do to make your older dog happy and comfortable in his later years. Together, you can embrace their “golden years” together! Every step of the way, our Magnolia Springs Veterinary Center Team is here to help!
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