Care of an elderly dog
Dogs older than 10 years old can be considered as old dogs, ie a dog that is over this age (especially if it is large) is an old dog.
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Older dogs have a certain tenderness, and if you’ve ever had one, you certainly know this: Older dogs resemble, in a way, a baby dog, either for their needs, for their care, or for their delicacy.
In this article by YourCatCareguide, we offer the best advice to improve the quality of life of elderly dogs and provide greater comfort. Keep reading to discover the care of an elderly dog, the complete guide to everything you should know.
Caring for an elderly dog requires dedication and willingness
As stated earlier, puppies older than 10 years old are considered old dogs, old dogs. Still, you should know that puppies of small size are generally tend to live longer, but that depends on each case.
During this final stage of your life (do not be scared, in some cases it is too long!) The dog experiences behavioral changes, sleeps much longer and may even develop diseasesbecause his immune system is compromised if you do not pay attention. Its mission should be to combat the effects of age, taking into account three basic factors:
Feeding an elderly dog
Feeding the elderly or senior dog is very important as it has different needs of an adult dog. For this, the tutor only needs to follow these advices:
- An elderly dog should be proportionate and not obese. maintaining the ideal figure is very beneficial as it prevents your dog from carrying excessive weight on his bones and muscles.
- To ensure that your puppy is well fed, it is important to consult the veterinarian every 6 months for a general review and review, ruling out anemia and other problems.
- If your dog is in good physical shape and eats without problem, you should switch your feed to a light or senior feed . These rations have fewer calories and are specific to this stage of the dog’s life. Do not forget that you should bet on quality food.
- If, on the other hand, your puppies are too thin, it is best to try to make them gain weight through fattening puppies’ food.
- If you find that your dog does not drink water frequently, you can try adding chicken broth or fish to the feed (if he accepts it). It can also increase the consumption of water-rich pates and moist food .
- Your dog should always have clean, fresh water with plenty.
- At this point in your life, your teeth can be damaged. Avoid offering bones for the dog to gnaw, it is preferable to use an apple for this.
- It can happen that the dog does not eat and spit out his food, or that he simply does not want to eat. In these cases, we advise you to find a higher quality ration and to prepare homemade diets occasionally. If he does not eat, go to the vet.
- You can add vitamins to your puppy’s diet if you feel you need extra energy. Consult your veterinarian or pet store to find out how to administer them.
- If your old dog eats too fast and you fear that it will suffer a gastric twist, you can spread the feed on a clean and disinfected surface. This will help the dog to use his sense of smell and eat more slowly.
- Do not forget that in some cases, older dogs with problems such as senile dementia may lose consciousness while eating (forgetting that they are eating). In such cases, we recommend that you supervise meals.
- It is also possible that the elderly dog suffering from deafness or loss of vision does not want to eat if you are near him, which is normal. Let him be confident that being around is a good idea.
If you do not properly feed or moisturize your elderly dog, serious problems such as kidney failure or heart problems can appear. It is important to monitor it and verify that the dog feeds properly.
How should the rides of an elderly dog
The elderly dog sleeps longer than an adult dog, but do not get confused like this: he needs to walk around and socialize like any other dog . For this, it is important that you adapt physical exercise to your concrete situation, since dogs that are very old have a reduced physical activity, but that should be maintained.
We recommend that the tours be more frequent, but shorter (never more than 30 minutes), and be made in the early morning, or in the afternoon at sunset. If you are in direct sunshine of noon, the dog can suffer from excessive and unnecessary heat. Walking with the dog helps keep your muscles and control obesity, a risk factor at this stage. You can practice many activities with an elderly dog .
Do not forget that you should be especially careful if your puppy suffers from hearing or visual deficiencies. It is more sensitive to the environment and therefore you should hear or see through it.
Finally, it is important to add that the tutor should be aware and understand that your old puppy can show different behaviors in this new phase. Do not pull your treadmill or treat it disproportionately, be patient as it is during walking even if it walks more slowly or in some cases you do not want to walk. Always carry some treats in your pocket to motivate your partner.
The elderly dog may change his behavior, be more independent, attached or even cry when the tutor leaves home: he has greater needs for affection.
One of the most common problems that occur with older dogs is that because they sleep a lot, their families think they should leave them alone. It is for sure that we should let the dog rest and not interrupt his hours of sleep. However, it is important to give affection to the dog regularly, encourage him to play and have fun with the elderly dog . Otherwise, apathy, sadness and isolated family behavior may arise.
Play and treat the dog in a special way, do not forget that it can be difficult for him to rejoice in his most delicate state. Leave toys or intelligence games with food when you leave the house so the dog can be distracted.
It is normal for the elderly dog to change behavior or attitude within the home. You may notice that he follows the tutor exaggeratedly: it may be a consequence of deficiencies in his senses, being afraid of being alone . We recommend that you try to increase your confidence and that you always count on your company to go to the kitchen or the room, he thanks you.
If your dog has senile dementia, it is important to try to keep order indoors so you do not get disoriented.
In addition, some dogs begin to have pains in the body due to the age, the bones and the musculaturas. It is also more difficult to regulate your body temperature. For this reason, it is essential that they have a large, warm, comfortable and padded bed where they can rest, since old dogs sleep a lot.
Diseases of elderly dogs
Older dogs can suffer from all kinds of diseases of their own over time. It is important that you spend a little of your day palpating your dog’s skin and caressing it to find out if you have sore spots . No one better than you can do this.
In addition, it is important to perform emptying of the anal glands , a common problem in older dogs. If you do not consider yourself fit to do this, you can take it to a veterinarian or canine aesthetic center.
Some of the most common diseases of the elderly dog are:
- Incontinence (you may need a diaper for a dog )
- Tooth loss
- Gastric torsion
- Displacement of anca
- Kidney disease
- Heart diseases
It is important to consult your veterinarian more regularly than usual to maintain the health of an elderly dog. We also recommend that analyzes be done at least every six months to make sure everything is working properly.
The host house, a wonderful option
In several shelters or animal shelters, an action called the host house is held, a different option: It consists of adopting an elderly dog temporarily , since they are the group of abandoned dogs that attracts less attention.
The center in question offers the veterinary services for free , all so that the dog can have a dignified finish in a home. Try to find out if there is a center near you that offers this possibility and becomes a host.