Dogs are very good at hiding their health problems and as an owner, it’s your responsibility to keep an eye on your senior dog to ensure that you are adjusting his routine to match changes in his body and immune system that make him less able to cope with physical and environmental stresses. Routine exams, preventive medicine and adjustments to your dog’s lifestyle can help your pooch stay healthy even as the years creep up.
Know When Your Dog Qualifies
Different sized dogs age at varying rates, with larger dogs reaching senior status much sooner than smaller dogs.
While each dog reaches “seniorhood” at a different age, most canines become seniors between 7 and 10 years old. It’s important to know your dog’s age, so you know when he becomes a senior. Ask your vet about when your dog’s needs may begin to change.
Watch Out for Senior Dog Care- Health Issues
You and your vet will begin looking for specific issues that become more prevalent as a dog ages. Here’s a list of some of these issues:
- Cancer (especially testicular or breast cancer)
- Prostate disease
- Cognitive disorders
- Intestinal problems
- Dental disease
- Diabetes mellitus
- Kidney disease
- Liver disease
- Vision problems
Schedule Regular Wellness Exams
Just as with people, regular health checkups become increasingly important as dogs grow older. Most experts agree that senior dogs should be seen at least once every six months. The purpose of these wellness exams is to do three things:
- Promote your dog’s health and longevity.
- Recognize and control your pup’s health risks.
- Detect any illnesses at their earliest stages, which may improve treatment options.
Read more about Senior Dog Care at vetstreet.com