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Caring for a Senior Dog

Is your canine pal getting along in years? As Fido ages, you may need to make some changes to his feeding and care regimen. Below, a Newmarket, ON discusses caring for an aging dog.

Food

Making sure Fido is getting a good, nutritious diet is very important. Always feed your pup the highest-quality food you can afford. While occasional treats are ok, don’t let your pup become obese! Certain vitamins and supplements may help your canine pal with some of the aches and pains associated with aging. Fish oil, for instance, may be beneficial to dogs with bone or joint disorders. Your furry friend may also benefit from an elevated food dish. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.

Comfort

Your canine buddy will sleep more comfortably on an orthopedic bed, which will offer more support than a regular doggy bed. Be sure to keep Fido inside in bad weather, as older dogs are more sensitive to temperature extremes and fluctuations. If your furry pal has difficulty navigating stairs, or climbing in and out of cars, consider getting a pet ramp or doggy stairs to make it easier for him.

Grooming

Brushing your dog’s fur regularly will help remove mats and tangles, which will help to maximize the insulating properties of his fur. Also, be sure to keep Fido’s nails clipped, as overgrown nails can make it difficult for Fido to walk, run, or play.

Exercise

While you don’t want to over-exert a senior dog, be sure to keep Fido active. Walk him daily, but let him pick the pace, and take him in when he gets tired. Your furry buddy may be more interested in napping than playing, so let him get plenty of rest. There are few things cuter than an old dog dozing in a sunbeam!

General Health

Fido may need to see the vet more often as he ages, so he can be monitored for any developing health issues. Your dog’s immune system will weaken as he grows old, so be sure to keep up with his parasite control products, as well as necessary vaccinations. Aside from that, just keep an eye on your canine friend, and watch for any unusual behavior or signs of sickness. If you notice anything that seems amiss, contact your vet immediately.

Please call us, your Newmarket, ON vet clinic, for all your dog’s veterinary care needs.

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