Senior Dog Care with our Reisterstown Veterinarians
You love your dog and want what's best for him. Good health care is important at all stages of your dog's life, but they need special care as they get older. Dogs age faster than humans, and there aren't always outward signs that they are getting older. Just like people, dogs’ health needs change and they become more prone to certain illnesses and conditions. Give your senior dog that proper care and attention it needs with help from our trusted and caring veterinarians in Reisterstown.
How Long Will My Dog Live?
This depends. Natural lifespans vary according to multiple factors. Barring serious injury or disease, the average lifespan is 10 - 13 years. This can vary widely, as smaller dogs tend to live longer. It's not unusual for a smaller breed dog to live to be 15 or 16 years old. The largest breeds tend to have much shorter lifespans so it isn't unusual for a breed such as a Great Dane to only live to be 8 - 10 years old.
Aside from size and breed, there are plenty of other factors when it comes to lifespan and health. Dogs that get good nutrition, exercise and lots of loving, positive interaction will live longer than those who don't.
When is My Dog Considered A Senior?
Again, this somewhat depends but by age seven your dog is considered a senior. For smaller dogs, the senior years may stretch out considerably longer than bigger dogs, who may only spend three or four years as a senior.
Your pet won't necessarily show any outward signs of aging although older dogs may get gray around the muzzle. Over time, you may notice your dog becomes less energetic and sleeps more. Other signs include difficulty jumping or running very far.
Taking Care Of Your Senior Pet
Your veterinarian is an excellent source of information when it comes to senior pet care. While yearly veterinary exams are important at all ages, it is especially important that your senior dog has regular checkups to ensure good health.
One of the biggest health concerns for senior dogs is obesity. As your pet gets older, he requires fewer calories and tends to be less active. The combination of lack of exercise and overfeeding can quickly become a problem. Not only that, but he has different nutritional requirements. For example, a pet food with fewer carbs and fillers and more protein is ideal.
It's important that your senior dog continue to get plenty of good exercise and attention. Making sure that her environment is stimulating keeps her mind sharp and staves off depression.
Schedule Your Senior Dog Exam with our Reisterstown Veterinarian
Your veterinarian can make sure your pet is in good health and check for common senior pet issues like arthritis, obesity, dental problems, and more. It's always a good idea to keep your eye out for signs of problems such as extreme loss of energy or lethargy, lack of appetite, difficulty eliminating, skin problems, or trouble walking or getting up. Contact TLC For Pets, your trusted veterinarians in Reisterstown, at (410) 833-1717 to schedule an appointment.