How To Care For Dogs In Their Old Age
It seems like one moment you’re picking them up for the first time, just a little puppy, able to fit in your two hands. Before long, they get to be big, and their curiosity for the world grows along with their size. They run around playing with the other dogs, and seem to have infinite stores of energy. They’re in peak physical condition.
Then that slowly starts to change. You notice, perhaps, that they aren’t running with quite as much vigour as they once did, or that they don’t seem all that interested in the young whippersnappers at the dog park. They’re content to just curl up on their Mammoth Dog Beds and while away the hours snoozing.
It can be hard watching your beloved companion grow old, especially when their age is accompanied by medical problems, like dysplasia, arthritis, incontinence or dementia. Your once-active pup is now an elder, wiser than the other dogs but suffering through some age-related pain. Your job, in these twilight years of your best friend’s life, becomes how to make sure they’re comfortable, pain-free and able to enjoy themselves. Let’s look at a few things you can do once your pooch gets on in years.
Regular Vet Visits
It’s good to get into the habit, especially with very old dogs, of going for regular vet check-ups. Remember that dogs age much quicker than humans – in the six months you leave between vet visits, your dog can age a number of years. This allows for early detection of disease, and allows you to monitor more closely your dog’s comfort level. Remember, dogs can’t always communicate that they’re in pain.
Diet And Exercise
Diet and exercise are important to any dog – indeed they’re important to any human as well – but they are even more important in old dogs. This doesn’t mean that you should require your old pooch to get as much exercise now as they did when they were younger – in fact, quite the opposite. Give your old dog the opportunity to exercise, but monitor them for when they’ve had enough, and don’t push it.
As for diet, weight issues and diabetes are common in older dogs, so make sure that you feed your dog according to the vet’s recommendation, and lay off the excessive treats. Check out this list of healthy dog treats for old dogs, which includes some treats that offer hip and joint care. And speaking of hip and joint care…
Choosing The Right Dog Bed
Older dogs, especially large breeds, often battle with some form of joint problem, like arthritis, that can cause them pain. This pain is often made worse by having an inadequate bed, one with easily compactible fill and insufficient space either spread out or curl up. Mammoth Outlet addresses each of these problems with our dog beds, and we’ve even gone so far as to tailor beds to specific breeds, so if you have a Great Dane, for example, we encourage you to learn about extra large dog beds from our website.
The high memory fill in each of our dog beds acts as a cushion around the affected joints of your old dog, taking pressure off of the painful area. Old dogs absolutely love our beds – just read these reviews from past customers whose dogs just refused to get out of bed! Now that’s a sign of a well made dog bed.
You should also take a look at the Mammoth Latex dog beds that offer supreme support that can be washed and perfect for dogs suffering from allergies. Latex is known to outlast any other support cushion and be able to be washed if needed.
Old dogs also tend to have dental issues. Consult with your vet to see if a change in food is necessary, or whether a cleaning ought to be schedules. Try and brush your dog’s teeth regularly to avoid any tartar build-up, pain or gum disease. You can find all sorts of intriguingly flavoured toothpastes for dogs, like chicken and beef.
Love And Affection
Finally, don’t forget to give your dog the requisite about of attention and care. A dog likes to be of use to their human, and even if they can no longer fetch the paper or come greet you enthusiastically at the door, let them know that they’ve done a great job. Give them those belly scratches and ear scratches they love – no dog is too old for those.
Your dog may have retired from the job of chasing down balls or barking at squirrels, but they’re still the same pup. With a little extra TLC, some frequent vet visits and an orthopaedic dog bed, you can make sure your pup retires in comfort and style!