Just as we give special attention to the needs of puppies, dogs heading into their later years require unique attention to help continue their good quality of life and extend their precious time with us. After so many years of loyalty and support, don't they deserve the best care we can give them?
When is my pet considered a Senior?
Aging varies by breed, body size and individual pet. Larger breeds of dogs age more quickly than smaller dogs. Typically a cat reaches their senior years at 9 years old, small dogs at 9 years old, and large dogs at 6 years old.
How often should I bring my Senior in for a visit?
Pets can not tell us when they feel unwell or if they are experiencing subtle life changes. Our senior heath program provides check-ups at least twice a year to assist in early identification and management of disease conditions. Dogs and cats age much faster than we do and as a result, health problems progress much more rapidly. Australian pets are living longer than ever, and the risk of disease increases with age so early detection is the key to prevention.
Diet for Seniors
The most critical part of preventive health care for a cat or dog is keeping a normal weight. On average, a fat cat or dog will have a shorter lifespan than one who is a normal weight. Geriatric cats and dogs need only about 2/3 the number of daily calories that young adults do. A “seniors” formulated diet will have a significant impact on the health of your older pet.
When should I worry about my Senior?
If you notice the following changes in your pet:
- Increased or decreased appetite or thirst
- Weight gain or loss
- Reduction in grooming or greasy hair
- Having problems with urination and/or defecation
- Changes in normal home behaviour
- Persistent cough
- New lumps or bumps.
- Bad breath, tartar on teeth or bleeding gums
- Trouble getting up, difficulty walking or taking the stairs
If you notice any of these signs please call us to make an appointment.