Ways to Care for Geriatric Pets
Because you love your cats and dogs so much, you might not want to consider and acknowledge the possibility that they are aging and aging more quickly than you do. Unavoidably, they will age and have specific needs as senior dogs and cats, enabling them to live longer and in better health. Fortunately, you can do several things to promote the comfort of older pets. Likewise, pets live longer than ever due to veterinary medicine, nutrition, and senior pet care improvements.
Find out how you may support your elderly pets as they age by reading on.
When Does a Pet Become “Old”?
Depending on the circumstance, cats are considered seniors at 11, and small dogs are generally categorized as seniors at 7. Bigger breed dogs often live shorter lives and are categorized as seniors when they reach the age of about 6 years.
Is Old Age a Disease?
By definition, old age is not a disease and does not cause death. Nonetheless, the issues brought on by an aging body reduce the quality of life and even cause mortality. As the aging process is so complex, it can be challenging for the veterinary team to discern between changes brought on by age and those linked to prevalent medical disorders.
Things to Expect From Your Senior Pets
Pets’ biological systems, organs, and metabolism change as they age, creating health problems that require vet treatment. With failing sight, hearing, taste, and smell senses with time, our cats’ and dogs’ senses will no longer be the same.
As pets age, their immune systems degrade, and they become more prone to illness. Increased thirst, hyperthyroidism, and excessive thyroid hormone secretion indicate kidney disease, which is common and frequently diagnosed.
Caring for Senior Dogs
Here are simple guidelines that you must go by to enable your dogs to live out the most satisfying years of their lives in health and happiness.
It might be best to have the dog in for checkups twice a year as they reach the age of seven because preventive medicine is built on identifying and treating illnesses early on. In addition to a general evaluation, this bi-annual checkup will involve blood, urine, and stool tests, a chest x-ray, an electrocardiogram, and dental examinations. Check out this pet hospital to help you with preventive measures to ensure your senior dog remains healthy.
Elderly animals must be given formulations made expressly for their age since they have unique nutritional needs. Less salt, more fiber, and proteins of higher quality are a few of them. Some nutrients must be reduced while others must be raised or upgraded in quality to give adequate nourishment and a longer life expectancy.
It’s critical to regularly brush and bathe your dog with particular dog products, take it on the right walks and exercise routines, and let him enjoy some fresh air and sunshine as part of good hygiene. Take them less frequently to the park and on the street as they age to avoid joint problems and early obesity.
Caring for Senior Cats
These straightforward rules must be followed if you want your cats to enjoy the best years of their lives in good health.
Senior cats should visit the veterinarian regularly to get checkups and ensure everything is okay. A twice-yearly trip to the veterinarian is a recommended precaution once the cat starts to exhibit more pronounced age-related changes. Check out this geriatric veterinarian near me page if you decide to bring your cat for a checkup.
Screening and Vaccinations
Senior cats should have blood tests to screen for hyperthyroidism, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes mellitus, cancer, arthritis and other joint problems, feline dementia, and other cognitive diseases.
It is important to remember to vaccinate older cats since their body immune systems deteriorate over time. This is truer now than ever.
Senior cats should keep up their active habit. Exercise is necessary if they wish to retain a high quality of life. An active lifestyle will help elderly cats avoid or delay the onset of diseases like obesity or osteoarthritis, which are frequent in older cats.
Are Senior Pets Too Old for Surgeries?
Your pet is never “too old” to get the excellent care they need. Surgery may be necessary to control infection in bites and open wounds from fights. Ligament tears may necessitate surgery. Also, stabilizing damaged bones can require surgical resetting or metal plate insertion. In urgent circumstances, it is advised that you take your pet to the veterinarian’s clinic as quickly as you can to avoid blood loss, infection, or other damage. Click here to learn more about surgeries.
As with people, aging is still something expected, impacting your pet. It is vital to realize that as they age, our animal friends will change from the youthful animals they were. Due to these changes, they will not only have more relaxed lifestyles and be less active but also require particular care and attention to make their lives simpler and more comfortable. You may watch them evolve into adorable senior dogs and cats with proper care.