The idea of our pets getting old is upsetting, but aging is a fact of life. All we can do is love them to the fullest and adjust to their new set of needs to keep them comfortable.
Of course, keeping them comfortable not only means maintaining their happiness, but also their overall health and well-being
We will cover seven ways to help your senior dog to get you and your pup through these new challenges. Read on to learn how to make an old dog comfortable now.
Upgrade to a More Comfortable Dog Bed
Let’s start with the basics like the new supplies! Your stiff senior dog needs a softer and lower bed to save them from joint aches and pains and other conditions. Their sleep should always be peaceful and cozy, so make sure to invest in an orthopedic bed that is ultra-thick and warm to soothe their arthritis.
PetFusion’s Large Orthopedic Dog Bed is made out of memory foam that promises reduced joint pain, improved health, mobility, and energy.
This one definitely stands out among other beds for senior dogs as all sides are elevated to keep your furry friend secured as they doze off. There is also an entryway on one side that makes it more accessible to pets who can’t step high enough.
It comes in four sizes and is easy to clean, water resistant, and durable.
Buckle Them Up When Inside the Car
Just because your dog is old doesn’t mean they aren’t any more ready for adventures! Take them on outings and make sure they are safe and protected during the road trip with a safe seat belt and harness.
You can also consider this pet seat cover and dog hammock from Active Pets to keep them pampered, free, and safe while inside the car. It comes with a soft fleece mat, which dogs love because of the texture, attached to the hammock that prevents them from slipping and sliding. It’s Velcro-sealed seat lets you have access to the two seat belt leashes as well!
Make Your House More Accessible to Them
As previously mentioned, aging dogs frequently have problems with their mobility because their bodies start to get stiff and they are more vulnerable to arthritis and other age related illnesses. With that in mind, consider making modifications around your house so they will continue to feel welcome and comfy in it.
For instance, try a non-skid carpet runner in their favorite parts of the house so they can wander around them happily.
You can also get a portable ramp for cars and couches like PetSafe Happy Ride Folding Dog Ramp!
We are amazed by how light this product is that you can bring it anywhere with you! Despite the weight, it can carry even your 150-lb chubby dog. Its portability makes it easier to store and carry, too.
Modify Their Exercise Routine
Exercise becomes more important as our beloved pets get older. This keeps them physically fit and mentally stimulated by releasing serotonin, keeping the muscles strong, preventing obesity, and boosting their appetite.
However, their exercise needs to be moderated in such a way that you increase the frequency and diminish the intensity. Replace your game of fetch with a long walk full of sniffing, greeting, and investigating!
We know how our four-legged buddies love to be with people to interact and grab their attention. Keep them curious and active and they will stay happy and healthy.
You can also ask your vet for supplements that will increase their energy and for advice on the best activities you can do with them.
Try Canine Therapy
Increasing age means more aches and pains for your pup and all these can be relieved through therapy. Make sure that the procedure is safe and recommended by your vet!
One therapy you may consider is laser therapy for acute and chronic injuries, muscle pulls, and other sources of pains. It uses a class 4 cold-laser device to make your pet walk properly!
Another effective one is hydrotherapy which includes swimming in a warm pool and using a treadmill underwater. It also alleviates joint pain and improves cardiovascular health.
Acupuncture is also ideal for neurological and musculoskeletal benefits!
Physical therapy is excellent for regaining body function and movement. And you can even learn how to give your dog a massage to help them.
Check out this video from Insider that shows how underwater treadmills work in the Animal Medical Center, NYC to provide dogs with sports medicine and rehabilitation!
Maintain a Healthy Diet
Dogs entering old age will also require a new diet. Their changes in metabolic rate cause more stored fat and less burned calories.
This means it is better to eat food that is lower in fat and calories and higher in L-carnitine which is found in red meat, fish, chicken, and dairy products.
In some cases where dogs get thinner as they grow old, more calories may actually be needed. This is applicable to those with decreased appetite and a loss of sense of smell or taste.
More protein is also needed for maintaining the muscles, tissues, and to repair the immune system. It is also not true that too much protein on old dogs can overtax their kidneys.
Maintain their sources of fiber. There is no need to increase or decrease fiber intake since senior pets don’t need to lose weight. Moreover, this nutrient can alleviate constipation and provide glucose regulation.
Annamaet’s Senior Dry Dog Food is specially formulated for senior pups as it contains sustainable silver carp high in omega 3 fatty acids and protein for lean body mass. It also has probiotics for gut health and turmeric for decreased inflammation.
Remember to keep them hydrated and add any necessary supplements to their diet.
Fish oil keeps your dog’s coat healthy and their joints supported. Glucosamine and chondroitin are also suggested for arthritic dogs. Lastly, hyaluronic acid can aid in lubricating fluid in your dog’s bones.
Consider More Frequent Vet Checkups
Your geriatric pal needs more trips to the vet, preferably three times a year. However, checkups need to be more frequent if there is already an existing health problem with your dog.
Make sure to comply with any necessary diagnostic tests like x-rays, blood tests, and physical examinations.
Remember to continue with the basic care needs of your pup such as proper grooming, oral hygiene, and a balanced diet.
The senior dog checkups will also help in determining symptoms early in order to easily treat these conditions. Striking early can help your dog stay healthy and happy, so they can enjoy their golden years.
P.S. Help a friend with their senior dog by pinning this!