Top Tips for Taking Care of Your Senior Dog
One of the best things you might ever do is get a dog. At the very beginning of your time with them, life can seem like a breeze as you head out on hikes and play fetch for hours each day. It’s no secret that puppies are hard work, and if you are reading this article then you will know that since you’ll have already went through it. Senior dogs require just as much care and attention as a puppy, if not more. They have spent their days being there for you, now it’s time to be there for them and give them undivided attention.
This article has completed some research to find out some of the best tips you can consider when taking care of an older dog. It is easier than you might think, but it is great that you have come to terms with the fact you need to change how you approach life with your dog. Stick around to find out more!
Find a routine
One of the first things you can do to take care of your senior dog is by helping them find some routine in their daily lives. As you will already be aware, you are your dog’s whole world – everything about their world revolves around you. This is why you need to ensure that you are making enough time to consider how your dog flows through each day.
Depending on the health of your senior dog, you might find it more common nowadays for them to sleep in longer, spend less time outside and generally, less time doing the things they used to love doing. However, keeping your dog in a daily routine is a good way to keep them feeling young and happy. All too often, dog owners simply let their dog’s routine follow their own. However, as a senior dog, this shouldn’t be the case as they need some more scheduled time doing what they love.
A routine can also ensure you maintain your dog’s health as they will know what to expect at the same time each day. A cohesive routine is key for a healthy and happy senior dog, so certainly consider this tip going forward.
Be mindful of their weight
Secondly, as dogs age, they become a lot less mobile and prefer to lounge on the sofa or your lap. Whilst this is a necessity for their joints and bones, you must stay mindful of your dog’s weight and overall health. One way you can do this is to ensure your dog gets enough exercise each day. The ideal weight of your dog will wholly depend on the type of dog you have, so it is worthwhile checking in with your dog’s vet or thoroughly researching online.
When it comes to exercising with a senior dog, many experts recommend that you should follow a professional training plan to keep your dog within its limits. You should make sure you are not pushing your dog to walk, run or play for longer than they are capable of. Moreover, your dog’s energy levels will decrease as they age, so this is something to expect.
On that note, as your dog gets older, this does not mean they cannot live their golden years happy and healthy. It’s just up to you to help them along with it!
Keep them nourished
On the topic of staying mindful of your dog’s weight, you can aid with this by giving them a healthy and nutritious diet. Senior dog food can be different to puppy food in some cases as they will require different and more nutrients. Your dog’s ability to fight infection and the issues that come with age will wholly depend on how nourished and strong it is to fight.
Senior dog food is the perfect thing to help ensure this is the case for them as it boosts their immune system, helps with bowel movements, helps with their digestion and gives them a glossier coat. On top of this, senior dog food is proven to give dogs higher energy levels which will, in turn, allow them to exercise more and feel healthier.
The best type of dog food to serve your senior dog is that of raw dog food as it is full of the vital nutrients and proteins required to keep them on their toes. From our research, this point was the more commonly suggested one out of them all as health is largely down to diet when it comes to pet health.
Help them socialise
What better way to keep your dog happy than to help them socialise with other dogs? Senior dog life can be much easier if they have another furry friend at home, however, this is often not the case for many senior dogs. As they can’t be as playful and energetic as they used to be, aging can become a very lonely and frustrating process for senior dogs, but you can help!
We recommend that you help your dog get out to meet some other people and other dogs every so often. It doesn’t need to be for hours each day or week; it can be as simple as meeting up with a friend and their dog a couple of times per month. This will allow your dog to feel youthful and happy as they now have some time to spend with another furry friend.
Experts recommend that you allow your dog to socialise with both older and younger dogs as this will make them feel engaged and happy. With that being said, you must consider the extent of your dog’s playfulness abilities. At all costs, you should try to avoid putting them out of their comfort zone.
Keep them comfortable
A final tip to consider when taking care of your senior dog is by keeping them comfortable and showing them some attention. As your dog is getting older, you’ll notice a drop in energy levels and a surge in laziness. However, this laziness isn’t a bad thing, it is just their way of showing us that they’ve had enough for the day. This is when you can make yourself available for them, giving them enough attention and love as you did when they were a pup.
One way you can keep your dog happy and comfortable is by assessing their sleeping situation and ensuring it is comfortable enough for them. Additionally, you can purchase some new senior dog toys now and again for them and give them some delicious treats to let them know they are loved. Just make sure that the treats are suitable for your dog and their senior dog food diet.
Overall, it is hard to take care of a senior dog, but don’t let it throw you off. If you’ve made it this far into the article, then you are doing the right research and know what to expect. If you are taking one thing away from today’s article, just remember that your dog’s diet is key for a healthy and functioning immune system. This, coupled with some love and attention, will allow them to live out their golden years happy, comfortable and safe.