How to Keep Senior Dogs Active and Healthy - Healthy Dog World

How to Keep Senior Dogs Active and Healthy


Ask any dog owner and they will tell you that it’s a big challenge, and an even bigger responsibility, to keep a senior dog active, happy, and healthy. However, with a bit of time and attention, you can make your dog’s golden years as healthy and as comfortable as possible. Here are a few things you should know about senior dog care. 

Maintain a routine

Regardless of a dog’s age, it’s important to establish a routine and stick to it. Dogs are creatures of habit. They have to know when to eat, when to go outside, and when they can bond and play with you. It’s also a good idea to have a set schedule for exercise and training sessions to set expectations for your pup. Not only will maintaining a routine provide predictability and stability for your pup, but it will also keep you accountable.

Watch their diet

According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the nutritional requirements of dogs change and evolve. Various studies have found that as dogs age, they may require more protein and a lower intake of fat and calories. If you’re not quite sure how to implement a diet for your mature dog, it’s always best to consult your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will be able to walk you through the best diets and exercise programs depending on your senior dog’s needs.

Leisurely walks are always a good idea

It’s no secret that dogs love going for a walk. However, as dogs age, remember that it’s okay to take a step back. Keep in mind that your senior dog isn’t as spry as they once were. When walking, pay attention to your dog’s pace as well as the total distance that you are planning to walk. This gives your dog enough time to enjoy their time outdoors without being overworked.

Spend more time with them

One of the biggest downsides to having a dog is that dogs do not live as long as we do. While aging is a completely normal part of life, it’s heartbreaking to witness all the changes that aging may bring your best pal. As a pet parent, the best thing you can do is to spend more time with your aging dog and let them feel that you’re always there for them. 

Keep aching joints in mind

Just like humans, dogs also experience aching joints as they age. Some of the warning signs you should pay attention to are stiffness and limping, moaning and yelping when moving, and lethargy and reluctance to play. If you think aching joints are interrupting your pup’s daily life, pay your veterinarian a visit. Your veterinarian will perform various physical tests to determine the root of the problem. Identifying where the problem stems from is important to make sure that you are administering the right type of treatment for your pup. Treatment can range from physical therapy, surgical treatment, to joint supplements. Keep in mind, however, that the type of treatment will depend on the cause and the severity of your pup’s joint pain.

Visit your vet regularly

According to the American Animal Hospital Association, taking your senior dog for a routine check-up twice a year is necessary as geriatric dogs are more susceptible to age-related illnesses. Visiting your veterinarian every six months enables you to detect the onset of disease and establish treatment methods before these health issues become worse.

How about you? Do you have other tips to keep senior dogs active and healthy? Share them in the comments below!

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