Senior pets require more care than younger pets. It is essential to understand that different pets are considered “seniors” at different ages. For example, smaller breed dogs like Chihuahuas are considered to be seniors when they are 10 to 11 years old, while larger breed dogs like Great Danes are considered seniors at around 5 or 6 years old. Cats aren't considered to be seniors until they are 11. It all depends on the animal.
When your pet is a senior, there are a few tips that you should follow to give them the care they need.
Don't Skip Veterinarian Appointments
As your pet gets older, they are going to need to see the veterinarian at Mauston Pet Hospital regularly. The older your pet is, the more prone they are to diseases. Regular visits to the vet are essential in keeping your pet healthy. As your pet ages, the vet might want to see them more than once a year. It is essential that you keep these appointments.
Feed Your Pet a Healthy Diet
As your pet gets older, you need to watch what they eat. Food that is high in fatty acids will prevent mobility issues caused by arthritis and other joint diseases. You should also watch how much your pet eats. Because senior pets are less active than younger pets, you need to make sure that they don't become overweight. Obesity in pets can result in diabetes, heart disease, skin problems, and cancer.
Take Care of Your Pet's Teeth
As your pet gets older, they are more at risk for tooth decay and gum disease. Over time, this can result in tooth loss. It is best to brush your pet's teeth every week if possible. If your pet doesn't let you brush their teeth, make sure that they have access to hard food. It can help scrape the tartar off. You can also use dental bones and toys. Finally, be sure to schedule regular appointments with the vet to have your pet's teeth examined.
Exercise Your Pet
Your senior pet needs exercise; however, getting enough exercise can be difficult. Older pets don't have the energy they had when they were younger, and many have joint and mobility issues. Rather than taking your senior dog for long brisk walks, make them shorter and slower. This will help them get the exercise they need without putting too much strain on their body. If you have a senior cat, you can help them get some exercise by playing with them. Just 10 minutes a day will be plenty of exercise for your senior cat.
Schedule an Appointment Today!
As your pet ages, they will need to be seen at Mauston Pet Hospital more frequently. Our veterinarian near Wisconsin Dells will make sure that your senior pet is healthy. We offer emergency vet care at our veterinary hospital if your senior pet becomes very sick or is injured. To schedule an appointment, give us a call today at (608) 847-6024!