Whether you’ve had your dog since she was a little puppy or adopted him as an adult, it can be difficult to admit that your precious pet is now in her senior years. Many pet parents find it difficult to come to terms with the fact that their dog won’t be around forever, but even though it can be tough, being honest about the fact your dog is getting older is crucial for her health and wellbeing. The way that you care for your dog needs to reflect her age. The good news is that there are several things that you can do to ensure that your dog is happy and healthy during her golden years.
Switch to Suitable Dog Food:
The food that you give your dog is designed for various canine age groups. If your dog is getting older and you are still feeding them the same diet that you were feeding them a few years ago, it might be time to consider a change. A diet that is more suitable for younger dogs can present various problems in a senior dog, including a lack of essential nutrients and weight gain if your dog is getting more energy than they are burning off from their diet. Since senior dogs often require less exercise and do not move around as much, their diet needs to reflect this. Senior raw dog food from Bella & Duke is an excellent choice. Bella & Duke offer prepared senior raw dog food meals that are specially formulated to ensure that your dog’s unique nutritional needs are met.
There are various natural supplements that can be extremely useful for anybody looking to improve the health and wellbeing of their senior dog. Omega-3s are especially important for senior dogs since they have an anti-inflammatory effect and can help to reduce joint pain in dogs with arthritis. You can add more Omega-3 to your dog’s diet from fish, phytoplankton, and krill oil. Probiotics are another important supplement for older dogs, thanks to the impact that they have on digestion and the immune system. Finally, adding more mushrooms to your dog’s diet can help reduce their risk of cancer and provide an immune system boost.
Create a Comfortable Environment:
As your dog gets older, you may notice that his senses of smell, sight, and hearing are deteriorating. This is a normal process, and there are several things that you can do to help your dog get around. When these senses start to deteriorate, your dog will rely on her memory more when moving around the house, so help her out by avoiding moving furniture as much as possible. It’s also a good idea to minimise clutter on the floors; seemingly innocent items left out like shoes or toys could lead to a nasty fall.
Encourage Consistent Exercise:
Most dogs require less exercise as they get older, however, this does not mean that you should give up on the daily walk. All dogs, regardless of age, need some regular exercise to maintain a healthy weight and improve muscle and joint health. It’s important to get the balance right as too much exercise can have the opposite effect for an older dog. Avoid high-impact activities or lengthy walks since it’s likely that your senior dog does not have the energy that they once did. Allow your dog at least one or two short walks per day and let her go at her own pace rather than expecting her to keep up with you.
Consider a Bed Designed for Older Dogs:
As dogs get older, they are often more prone to arthritis and other joint problems. The right bed can make all the difference between getting a comfortable sleep and waking up sore and stiff. If your dog often seems sore after sleeping, it could be because he is using the wrong bed. The best beds for an older dog are made from thick layers of memory foam that adapt to their shape and prevent additional pressure on any sore joints.
Keep Your Dog Warm:
Finally, remember that older dogs tend to have more difficulty when it comes to regulating their body temperature, and will usually feel the cold more compared to when they were younger. Older dogs may struggle to stay comfortable when the temperature drops, especially if they are a short-haired breed. If you’ve noticed that your dog seems colder than usual when out on walks, it might be time to invest in some dog sweaters or coats to provide an extra layer of insulation to keep them warm and comfortable. Bear in mind that older dogs also often suffer more in the heat, so avoid walking in the middle of the day during summer and make sure that your dog has plenty of water to drink.
Senior dogs often require a little extra care to remain comfortable and happy during their older years. If your dog is getting on in life, changing some parts of his daily routine will make sure he grows old as healthy as possible.