Have you noticed your furry friend slowing down lately, and perhaps becoming more interested in napping than in playing? As our animal companions grow older, they will go through many of the same changes as we will over time. Of course, you will need to make some adjustments to your pet’s care regimen. Here, a local vet offers some information on keeping Fido and Fluffy comfortable, happy, and healthy as they age.
Proper veterinary care is important to animals at any age, but it becomes particularly crucial for senior pets, simply because the risk of developing many health issues increases over time. Some common issues that we often see in older animals include heart disease, kidney and liver issues, diabetes, and vision or hearing loss. Keep up with your furry pal’s veterinary appointments. Having Fido and Fluffy examined regularly increases the odds of a developing issue being caught early. That can make a huge difference in treatment options and outcomes! Ask your vet to recommend an appointment schedule.
Keep a close eye out for anything out of the ordinary. While every type of illness has its own symptoms, there are some general ones to be aware of. Some of these include bleeding from the nose, mouth, or ears, (or from the other end); changes in appetite, thirst, and/or eating habits; sores that won’t heal; sudden weight gain or loss; withdrawal; swelling; vomiting; diarrhea; limping; lesions, lumps, or bumps; fever; lethargy; and respiratory issues. Contact your vet right away if you notice anything that seems off.
A big part of caring for your four-legged buddy at this stage of their life is really just keeping them comfortable. Good beds are a must! Fido may also benefit from pet ramps or stairs, while Fluffy may need a senior-friendly litterbox, and perhaps some kitty furniture that’s close to the floor. Your furry buddy will still need activity and stimulation, though this may look a bit different than it used to. Your canine pal may only need a short, slow walk around the block instead of a vigorous game of Fetch, while your cat may tap out after a few half-hearted pounces. If your pet develops specific conditions, such as vision or hearing loss, your vet will be able to offer advice on making things easier for them. Last but not least, just pay a lot of attention to your furry friend, and make sure they feel loved and safe. Treasure this special time in your pet’s life!
Do you have questions about your senior pet’s health or care? Contact us today!