It can be hard watching old age creep up on our four-legged friends. Getting older comes with its challenges, and it can be upsetting to see our pets struggle to do things they once found easy – but it’s not all doom and gloom! There’s a lot to be said for embarking on a slower pace of life together, and there’s a whole of host of steps we can take that can make a huge difference to our pets’ lives and help them embrace their golden years. Learn how to care for your older pet.
Thinking of our pets being in anything other than tip-top health is never easy, but thankfully there’s so much we can do to help:
Your vet will want to see your pet a bit more often once they get into their more senior years. They will listen to any concerns you have, and will give your pet a gentle but thorough MOT. They might recommend blood tests to check things like kidney and liver function, and can keep an eye on your pet’s weight. Depending on what their findings are, there are a whole range of potential options they might suggest to help your pet. Pain relief for pets with arthritis can help enormously, and your vet can discuss a treatment plan with you for any other issues they find.
As our pets get older, their immune systems can struggle to cope with things that they may have more easily shrugged off as a youngster. Thankfully, there’s a lot you can do to help keep them as healthy as they can be:
Don’t worry, we’re not talking about major home renovations (much as your pet might like their own loft conversion), but some simple adjustments around your home can make a huge difference to your pet’s well being.
Our senior pets may be slowing down, but exercise is still super important. Stretching those legs keeps them mobile and helps them stay at a healthy weight, not to mention that snuffling around in the great outdoors is a great source of mental stimulation and enjoyment for our pets. You might have to swap hour-long rambles for “little and often” outings, but your dog is likely to love the novelty of an extra walk, even if it’s just a short one! There’s lots of great indoor toys for cats can help keep them active, too.
Specially designed diets for our grey-muzzled pals can help them avoid gaining weight – a common issues in older pets when they, understandably, aren’t bounding about as much as they used to. If your furry friend seems fussier about their food, this may be because their sense of smell isn’t as honed as it once was; you can tempt them to eat by warming up their food and feeding them little and often.
Our older pets may need a little extra TLC as the days get chillier:
Although it can be hard to see our pets getting older, there is still so much to celebrate! With help from your vet and some changes to your lifestyle, you can feel confident that you’re doing all you can to support your senior pals; so, enjoy the slower pace of life together, and make the most of these special years.