Senior dogs offer so much joy and affection to their human families. As a result, it’s up to you to show your aging pet an ample amount of love in return. While a veterinarian can help you address any health issues your dog experiences, there are also steps you can take to make your pooch comfortable and happy.
Adjust your pet’s diet.
Dietary changes are quite common with aging dogs. If your pet is reluctant to eat, try feeding them several small meals during the day. If dental issues cause discomfort, switch from dry food to wet food since it’s much easier to chew. If your pet has trouble leaning down to reach food and water bowls on the ground, elevate the dishes on a stand.
Provide comfortable bedding.
Soft, comfortable bedding offers the cushioning older pets need when they rest. Upgrading to a softer, comfier bed improves their sleep schedule and prevents aches and stiffness upon waking.
Keep the temperature well-regulated in your pet’s sleeping area, making sure it’s cool and comfortable without being too chilly. If your dog normally sleeps on your bed with you but has trouble climbing or jumping onto the mattress, buying a small ramp or stairs can be very helpful.
Let your pet become inactive.
Older dogs often have joint issues that lead to mobility problems. However, this doesn’t mean you should stop walking your pet altogether. Instead, take shorter strolls, and space them out throughout the day to prevent potential discomfort. You can also look into activities—like water therapy and swimming—which are easier on swollen or sore joints.
Be lax about vet visits.
Appointments with a veterinarian are essential for all pets, but they’re especially important for elderly dogs. Your vet will treat any health conditions and address pain issues to ensure your pet enjoys the best quality of life possible. Schedule checkups twice a year to help catch problems early on; this gives your pooch the best chance at a positive outcome.
Dr. Timothy Henehan and our team at Wards Corner Animal Hospital are fully dedicated to providing pets of all ages with quality care. In addition to preventative care and surgical procedures, we also deliver compassionate geriatric care to senior pets throughout Greater Cincinnati. We even offer house calls if your pet has problems traveling. Call (513) 683-2883 to schedule an appointment at our Loveland, OH, clinic.