Seeing your dog age is a blessing. Senior dogs tend to slow down mentally and physically. For this and many more reasons, dog parents usually want to look for the best ways to care for their dogs. Typically, most people share an immense love for dogs and vice versa and don’t want to think about their aging dog- but it is inevitable and the sooner you start prepping the better off you both will be. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!
1. Set Up Semi-Annual Vet Visits
As your dog progresses in years, regular veterinary visits are essential. Usually, the visit guarantees a head-to-tail check-up. Heartworms can be a nuisance to most dogs. That is why the doctor takes a sample of the dog’s blood for testing.
Blood tests are essential because they help detect any infections or worms. Notably, you should carry the dog’s stool to the vet’s office. Stool testing will help to detect intestinal parasites in dogs. Nevertheless, the vet should test the dog’s urine regularly in case of any illnesses.
2. Administering of Vaccines and Injections and Titers
Administering vaccines for Rabies, DHPP and Lepto can also help fight off communicable diseases affecting dogs. Both of these injections are state requirements for daycares for dogs. If your dog is going to be less social outside and around other dogs you can consider doing a titer which measures if the dog needs to get another vaccine or if they have sufficient amounts of the anti-bodies already. Though more costly, it is a viable option to additional vaccines in the dogs body.
3. Stick to a Healthy Diet
You should ensure that your dog eats healthy and for those that notice a decline in interest in kibble- even more so this is for you! Ensure your dog eats fresh food. Most dog owners feed raw dishes to their dogs. However, as your dog ages, raw food may become indigestible. So, cooking for your pup or putting them on a can or wet food may be a better option.
Additionally, calories lead to weight gain. Unmonitored weight gain is unhealthy, especially at that stage of a dog’s life. Hence, you must give your dog a healthy diet to ensure it gets the nutrients needed.
4. Introduce Supplements as Guided by Your Vet
Apart from giving your dog a healthy diet, supplements are equally significant. They are an integral part of a dog’s health. Most people do not know that food alone cannot provide all the needed nutrients.
Supplements are helpful to provide nutrients that are not found in food. Supplements are substantial in boosting your dog’s immune system. The chances of your dog contracting various illnesses such as cancer and diabetes are reduced.
5. Keep an Eye Out for Subtle Signs of Discomfort- No Matter How Seemingly Small
It is challenging to detect if your dog is facing various discomforts. One significant sign that your dog is not okay is a change in appetite.
Ideally, heavy breathing is another indicator that your dog is experiencing discomfort. Even if its just once or twice it is worth getting checked out! It may show that your dog is experiencing a stroke or poisoning or congestive heart failure. Trembling is also a signal that your dog is in pain.
6. Make Some Home Updates
As your dog ages, you can update your home space. A home update will boost your dog’s movement. Stairs (especially foam ones) are efficient because they ease movement for your dog. Alternatively, you can set up rags for safety. As your dog slows down with age, the above changes are essential.
7. At-Home Pet Euthanasia
As your dog nears its demise, it is essential to experience a peaceful death. Euthanasia should be administered to create comfort. Notably, at home pet euthanasia is convenient and does not require having to transport your pet. In addition to this, you can stay with your pet after the procedure. It is sentimental for most people to spend this last moment with their dog.
8. Do Not Neglect Dental Care
Dog parents should maintain good hygiene for their dogs. Oral care can be neglected, but it is very substantial. Senior dogs are faced with several diseases. The dog may be experiencing pain due to the cracking of teeth or bacteria build up in the gums. Brushing the teeth, using an oral water additive and getting teeth cleanings are three strategies to combat oral hygiene. Too much bacteria in the mouth and gums can affect major organs and too much plaque etc may be a result of a heart issue.
9. Add in More Grooming Sessions
A dog grooming session encompasses bathing, brushing, and drying your dog. The groomer’s first step is to brush the dog’s fur to ease bathing. Suppose your dog is experiencing incontinence, additional baths should be set up at the groomers. That way, hygiene is perpetuated. Additionally, grooming is essential since it will leave your dog feeling its best way.
10. Go For Adventures
Taking your dog on extra random walks outside or car rides is an exciting activity. On adventures, you and your dog get to breathe new odors, and your dog can make new friends and see new neighborhoods, stores or restaurants/cafes. Moreover, adventure is an excellent chance for your dog to burn some calories.
People say that dogs are man’s best friend. Physicians say that owning a dog as a pet is therapeutic for people experiencing depression. There is a special bond between a dog and its owners. Therefore, we must let our dogs age peacefully.
photo cred: kabo-cpK-ETzsKFU-unsplash
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