Senior Canines: 4 Things You Can Do To Keep Them Healthy

Posted on: 7 August 2017

Just like humans, dogs get old and will require lifestyle adjustments. In order to make your dog's life easier and to help keep them healthy, here are a few things that you should do:

1. Offer the Right Diet.

As your canine ages, his or her dietary requirements will likely change. You need to pay attention to what your dog needs. Some older dogs will be prone to gaining weight, while others will lose weight. For the former, they will need to be fed a dog food that is targeted to less active dogs, while the latter needs to be fed a food with high calories. If you are unsure what type of food to buy, consult with your veterinarian.

2. Make Life Easier for Your Dog.

Since your dog is getting older, there is a good chance that he or she is developing arthritis and/or other health conditions that may be causing pain and making it difficult to get around the house and lay down comfortably. Therefore, you should consider offering stairs or ramps to help your dog get up onto the bed or other furniture that he or she is allowed to access. If your dog doesn't sleep with you in the bed and has his or her own bed, then you may want to consider purchasing an orthopedic bed or offering additional padding, as this will help your dog rest better and easier at night.

3. Watch Out for Behavior Changes.

You will want to pay very close attention to your dog, as behavior changes are often a symptom of serious diseases. Specifically, you will want to pay close attention for changes in your dog's water consumption and appetite. You will also want to keep an eye out for changes in your dog's bathroom habits and sleep routines. If you notice any sudden changes in your dog's behaviors or routines, it is imperative that you contact your veterinarian and schedule an appointment.

4. Maintain Regular Check-Ups.

It is very important that your senior canine has regular health check-ups with his or her veterinarian. The frequency of this visits will depend on the health of your dog, so make sure you discuss this with the vet. These examinations can help reveal any health issues that are present in your dog's life, such as arthritis, kidney disease, heart disease, dental disease, etc. Therefore, these check-ups are crucial to your dog's overall well-being. 

For more information, check with a vet like those at Berlin Township Animal Hospital.