With modern veterinary medicine and improved dietary knowledge, pets are living longer than ever. This means you’re getting even more time with your furry family member. However, this also means your pet’s dealing with age-related illnesses and conditions. With this in mind, here’s how to care for elderly pets.
Health Problems Affecting Elderly Pets
Older pets experience many of the same conditions as humans. Some of these health problems include:
- heart disease
- kidney/urinary tract disease
- liver disease
- joint or bone disease
How to Care for Elderly Pets
If your pet’s getting older, there are ways to help them stay as happy and healthy as possible in their older age. Talk to your veterinarian about what you can do to care for your elderly pet. Additionally, ask them any questions you have about any age-related health concerns. Keep in mind that elderly pets require more attention. Furthermore, they’ll need more frequent trips to the veterinarian, possible diet changes and possible changes to their home environment and routine. Some basic considerations for elderly pets include:
- Increased veterinary care: Your pet may need semi-annual veterinary visits instead of annual visits. This is so illnesses and other health concerns can be detected and managed earlier. Furthermore, these exams will be more thorough and may include dental care, blood work and checks for specific physical signs of common geriatric pet diseases.
- Diet and nutrition: Elderly pets require foods that are easier to digest, have different calorie allowances and ingredients and include specific anti-aging nutrients. Make sure your pet is on a healthy and nutritious diet.
- Weight management: Weight control is a major concern for elderly pets. Specifically, weight gain affects elderly dogs while weight loss is a worry for cats. Take steps to make sure your pet gets enough exercise and enough nutritious food.
- Mobility: Just the same as humans, the ability to get around easily is a major issue for elderly pets. However, constant and appropriate exercise helps keep pets healthier and maintain their mobility in their old age.
You love your pet no matter how old they are. November is National Senior Pet Month. It serves as a reminder that as your pet gets older, their needs change At Regal Animal Hospital, we’re dedicated to the health of your pet through all of their life stages. Looking for a veterinarian near you? Look no further than Regal Animal Hospital and contact us today at (561) 766-1380!