Senior dogs aren’t the spry little pups they once were. Over the years, you may notice it takes your dog longer than usual to get up the stairs. They might forget where their food bowls are, or crunchy treats might become too hard for their teeth.
Partial or total hearing loss is an invisible disability that’s hard to detect in pets. Upon closer inspection, some owners might notice their pet doesn’t react to the doorbell or verbal commands. When you approach the pet from behind, they might startle at your touch. These are all signs a pet has developed hearing loss to some degree.
As the years go by, pet parents start to notice their pups lagging behind on walks. They can’t keep up with the younger dogs and become less inclined to exert themselves. Aging is a natural process that can limit your dog’s physical activity.
Just like humans, our furry companions often experience mobility issues later in life. Many pets develop arthritis, which makes it painful to navigate stairs and furniture. All of a sudden, owners might notice their senior pet bumping into the coffee table or tripping over objects left on the floor. Stiff joints, visual impairments and other disabilities are all normal parts of the aging process.
Any pet parent can tell when a pup is approaching their senior years. They look a bit gray in the snout, and long hikes through the woods become increasingly difficult. But these aren’t the only signs of old age. Senior dogs might begin to act peculiar, often staring at blank walls or howling at odd hours of the night. In some cases, this could signal the onset of cognitive dysfunction syndrome.
If your resident cat is getting up there in years, you might be wondering whether it’s a good idea to adopt a kitten to keep them company in their old age. Can it be done? Absolutely. But should you? This answer is less clear-cut.
Considering whether or not to have your dog wear a diaper is never ideal. It can feel cruel, especially since few dogs love wearing them. Often, however, diapering your dog can increase their freedom and decrease the stress of your pet making messes they can’t control.
Most commonly found in dogs that are eight years and older, Cushing’s disease is a condition that affects your aging pet’s pituitary and adrenal glands. Unfortunately, the symptoms are sometimes mistaken for regular signs of aging—but they can have much worse consequences.
In their puppy years, dogs need plenty of stimulation and attention. As they age, it’s even more important to maintain your dog’s cognitive health. Like humans, dogs can experience cognitive decline in their later years, and you might notice they’re more lethargic and less prone to excitement. While all dogs tend to slow down a bit in their senior years, there are ways to prevent cognitive issues—like cognitive dysfunction syndrome—from affecting them. One of the main ones is through their diet.
As dogs age, they tend to slow down both physically and mentally. One solution many pet parents think of for keeping their beloved senior pet healthy and active is to adopt a new puppy. The thought behind this is that the puppy with keep the senior pet on their toes and encourage them to play.
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