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  • David Truchalski

How to Take Care of Your Senior Pet

Our pets are part of our family, and we love them very much, but as they get older, we need to care for them even more. Talk to your vet about how to care for your older pet and be prepared for possible age-related health issues. Senior pets require increased attention, including more frequent visits to the veterinarian, possible changes in diet, and in some cases alterations to their home environment.

Here are some really helpful tips on how we can take care of our senior pets:


SCHEDULING YOUR SENIOR PET’S VET APPOINTMENT

Schedule regular visits with your veterinarian. Your pet needs to be examined at least yearly if it appears healthy, as many diseases are hidden and not apparent. Remember it is much cheaper to prevent disease than it is to treat it! Ask for a body condition evaluation during each vet visit. Body condition is crucial to determining whether your senior pet is overweight, underweight, or at an ideal body weight. In fact, you should also ask your veterinarian to show you how to evaluate your pet’s body condition at home. Be more informed and aware of your senior pet’s condition. Observe your pet on a regular basis to stay on top of any potential symptoms of diseases.


SENIOR PET FOOD

Use food to keep your senior pet at his ideal body weight. Overweight dogs have a higher incidence of diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, skin disease, even cancer. Your veterinarian can help you choose an appropriate diet for your dog, especially since overweight dogs must be fed carefully to ensure that all nutrient needs are met while still allowing for weight loss. For instance, specialized diets that are lower in calories as well as those that are high L-carnitine are available for obese or overweight dogs.

A diet with a carefully chosen carbohydrate or carbohydrate blend can also help keep your overweight dog feeling satiated. To ease digestion, in the case of cats, consider feeding them several meals a day instead of one large serving. Avoid overfeeding, that can lead to numerous health problems and may shorten your pet’s life. Feed your senior pet with a high-quality diet. Also, learn to read your pet’s food label and choose a diet that is appropriate for your pet’s age and lifestyle.



OVERALL WELLNESS FOR YOUR SENIOR PET

Exercise your senior pet. It can help keep your senior pet lean and maintain healthy joints and muscles. Keep your senior pet on a regular exercise routine to help preserve muscle tone and to keep bones and joints strong. Keep your senior pet’s bed and surrounding area clean, and always remain proactive in controlling fleas.

Because senior pets are prone to inactivity, inspect your pet’s nails on a regular basis and trim them when necessary. Don’t forget to give your senior pet lots of love and attention. Provide plenty of toys to keep your senior pet occupied. Food puzzles, for example, are not only useful for entertainment but for weight loss purposes as well.

Provide your senior pet with special accommodations too. For instance, dogs with arthritis might benefit from soft bedding in the form of a special dog bed or towels/blankets on which to sleep. Ramps can be used to make stairs easier to navigate if they cannot be avoided. Even providing carpeting or rugs over hard-surface flooring can help your arthritic dog gain his footing and make it easier for him to get around. For instance, cats with arthritis might benefit from cat litter boxes with lower sides for easier access into and out of the box. Providing soft bedding for your cat, either with a cat bed or with towels or blankets to rest on, can help your cat be more comfortable. Be sure that food and water are easily accessible. Don’t force your arthritic senior cat to go up and down stairs to eat, drink or use the litter box.


DENTAL CARE FOR SENIOR PETS

Don’t overlook your pet’s dental health. Have your pet’s teeth cleaned by your veterinarian when advised and brush them at home on a regular basis. Dental disease is a gradual but painful degenerative condition. Living with chronic pain is very stressful and will significantly impact your pet's well-being. Of course, your pet won't let you know that they are in pain, however the fact is that all pets over 4 years of age have some level of oral health issues, and these conditions do cause significant pain. If your cat has not had a dental checkup in over a year, they are definitely due. Schedule an appointment today. Take care of your dog’s mouth. Brushing your dog’s teeth may seem like a silly idea but it can help keep your dog’s mouth healthy. If you cannot brush, consider dental treats and toys that help keep the teeth clean.


SUPPLEMENTS FOR YOUR SENIOR PET

CBD oil may play an important role in a vet approved plan for your senior pet’s health. Especially in canines and felines who suffer from mobility issues, persistent pain and inflammation, or chronic conditions that often come with age such as arthritis.






Pain Management and Inflammation

For many senior pets, pain management and inflammation are the crucial component of treatment to maintain quality of life. Pain and inflammation can be caused from injury, surgery, and chronic and progressive disease such as, hip dysplasia, and arthritis. Reducing pain and inflammation are very important for your senior pet’s quality of life, and cbd has been proven in multiple studies to be effective in reducing pain and no side effects.






Mobility in your Senior Pets

As our pets age, they begin to show less interest in activities they once loved, such as daily walks, a stroll to the park, playing with younger pets, getting to their food. It is upsetting to watch the process unfold, and of course we all want to extend our beloved senior pet’s mobility as long as we can. Since it is already proven the managing of both pain and inflammation, CBD Oil may help to improve your aging dog’s mobility. In fact, one study done on dogs showed that 2mg of CBD administered twice daily improved mobility for dogs affected with Osteoarthritis



Keeping a routine when it comes to your senior pet and taking care of their needs as they age is very important to maintain a happy and comfortable quality of life. We sincerely hope the tips above help you guide you in the right direction and of course, if you ever have any questions just let us know in the comments below or send us a message.


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