Is Your Dog Getting Old?
When you bring home a dog, you imagine him to be there life long. Unfortunately, that seems too good to be true. But, if you are lucky, you might be able to spend all your golden years together.
Dogs start showing signs of aging once they reach eight or eleven years of age, depending on their breeds. But, since they can’t speak your language, they cannot communicate their worries as easily as you do when you reach 40. They crawl away into a quiet corner and lick their wounds and do not rejoin the world until they are whole once more. You need to be alert and look for the following signs in order to be a better care giver for your buddy.
- He doesn’t seem to be listening to you nor seeing the ball you threw for him plain within his sight. Probably, a loss of hearing and sight, to some extent, as happens with humans too.
- He’s getting anxious in the presence of guests or strangers, a little bit more aggressive than before and clinging more to you as if in fear. Yes! His senses are dulling and he cannot manage stressful situations like he used to.
- He’s having difficulty moving, getting up or climbing and seems to have become a slow poke and lazy dump. That’s definitely because of joint stiffness or symptoms of arthritis, if not an old injury threatening to resurface.
- He’s putting on weight and gives you that ridiculous look of ‘I’m always hungry but don’t know what to do’. Well, his activity, metabolism and energy level have all slowed down with age and all he remembers is how much he has to eat all the time.
- His teeth and gums have aged too, showing signs of deterioration, just like his once shining and smooth coat, all requiring immediate attention.
Changing Their World – In the end it’s only kindness that matters
They are the lives you take care of and the lives that take care of you. Senior dogs require a care different from the younger ones, so you need to do things for them a little differently. How different they ought to be, read along to find out.
‘Just Wanna Be With You’
If your buddy could sing, he would sing his demand to you. Old age is the age of loneliness and the senior dogs get petrified whenever their owner is not around. So make sure that you spend ample time with your buddy, taking him for walks, playing with him or simply lazing around together making memories.
Never Say Never To A Vet
Since older dogs require additional care, they should more frequently be taken to the vet for routine checks. Illness that is diagnosed on time can be taken care of promptly, either curing them or prolonging their life.
That Journey to Get Back in Shape
One major issue, being overweight, can lead to a whole lot of other health problems. So while they still craze after food treats, their bodies aren’t active enough to burn the calories as before. To satisfy their taste buds and tummies, you can switch them to the yummy foods formulated for senior dogs; fewer calories, less fat and additional nutritional pet supplements. Set up their exercise program that will build up their stamina and impact positively on their overall health.
Love Him, Love His Teeth
‘Your mouth is the mirror of your health’. The health of your mouth, gums and teeth can affect your buddy’s general health. Dental treats, besides the daily cleaning, would work wonders for him.
A ‘Joint’ Effort
Yes, the biggest setback of getting old is having the joints go all stiff and painful. This is the time for some serious ‘joint effort’, a larger part involving you going all the way to make things easy for your buddy. When every movement becomes a pain for him, it’s time to make some changes in the house, give him massage and grooming for better blood circulation and some vet recommended joint supplements.
Your Care Says it All
Looking after your aging dogs is not as easy as it seems. You will have to take pains learning how to do it. How well are the last few years of their life spent, depends only on how well you make it for them. All it takes is a little care, a little kindness and pals for life.