You blinked, and suddenly your exuberant puppy has turned into a sweet old girl or boy! But don’t worry – with some extra care and lifestyle adjustments your older dog should be able to enjoy a lot more quality time with you yet.
Taking Care Of Joints In Older Dogs
It’s common for dogs over eight years to develop painful arthritis. Arthritis can be hard to recognise as it doesn’t always cause obvious signs such as limping. Monitor your older dog for symptoms such as stiffness after exercise, difficulties rising from rest, and a reluctance to jump up or climb stairs.
If you notice any of these signs, it’s best to book your pet in for a check-up. There are many effective arthritis treatments to improve your pet’s joint mobility and comfort.
What To Do if You Notice A Lump In You Older Dog?
If you notice any new lumps on your older dog then we recommend a prompt veterinary assessment. After which we can offer lump testing to see if any further treatment is warranted – this is always best to be done sooner rather than later. You can read more about lumps here.
Taking Care Of Your Older Dog’s Teeth
Dental disease is very common in dogs and sometimes even from a relatively young age. Furthermore, it can cause pain, infections and contribute to poor general health. Book your pet in for a check-up if you notice any bad breath, redness of the gums or discoloured teeth. For this reason, we may recommend a dental scale and polish procedure to clean the teeth and we will explain more about what’s involved.
Behaviour changes In Your Older Dog
Whilst we expect older dogs to slow down a little, it’s not normal for them to become very withdrawn, anxious or unsettled. Some of these symptoms can be caused by either medical issues or age-related cognitive decline (i.e. “dementia”). If you notice behaviour changes in your pet then it is best to get them assessed by one of our veterinarians. There are supportive treatments which can support optimal health in their twilight years.
Ideally, Dr Pete and Dr Dylan would love to give your old dog a check-up twice-yearly. This way, we can help them stay happy and healthy for as long as possible!
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