Common Health Problems in Senior Dogs
When a dog enters his seniorhood then he is more likely to develop some age-related health issues, however, with good care, you can help your dog lead a healthy & happy life. Just like humans, dogs can also become less enthusiastic about reaching seniorhood. From food, exercise to general care, a senior dog has unique requirements than those of younger dogs. It is the dog owner’s responsibility to take care of his furry companion’s need so that his dog can fend off any possible ailments.
Dog owners should be aware of common health issues that their dog can develop so that they can easily detect it before it deteriorates his health any further. Large breed dogs tend to age at a much faster rate than the smaller breed of dogs so you need to determine at what age your dog reaches his seniorhood then you need to keep a close eye on his health. Dogs tend to slow down on reaching the senior years of his life, and their respective owners get confused whether the changes that their dog’s body is showing is due to his growing age or is it due to any underlying medical ailment.
To make your dog live his senior hood happily, you need to be aware of all the health-related that commonly affect the senior dogs. Dogs tend to age at a much faster rate than we humans do and, just like humans, they also become afflicted with some health problems in their senior age.
In this article, we’ve rounded up some common health problems that you should watch out in your senior dogs:
One of the most common health ailments in senior dogs is deafness. As the dog ages, he becomes less responsive to the things around him due to nerve degeneration in his ears. Hearing loss can be frustrating for you and as well as for your dog but by helping your dog coping with it, you can make his life much easier. Nothing can be done to your dog’s deafness as every senior dog is bound to undergo degenerative changes in the ear. On noticing that your dog is failing to respond at your cues or sleeps more deeply without getting disturbed by loud noises then you should consider starting training him to sign language so that you can communicate with him.
Another common health issue that can affect your senior dog’s health is obesity. As the dog starts aging, their physical activity tends to reduce making them more prone to illnesses. Due to a lack of physical activity, they end up carrying extra weight on their body. Senior dogs love to eat & rest all day long which ends up making them obese. When a dog has a medical issue then obesity can contribute to complicating the treatment. To prevent your dog from getting obese, you need to feed your dog age-appropriate meals to ensure that he is not getting more calories than his body requires.
The next health issue common in senior dogs is dementia. Dementia or cognitive dysfunction can happen as the dog starts aging. Some common symptoms of dementia are confusion, whining for no reason, disorientation, and bathroom accidents, etc. Although there is no cure or dementia, however, with proper medication, you can help in improving his condition. Also, make sure to provide high-nutritional food to boost your dog’s brain functioning.
Another common problem health problem that senior dogs tend to face is osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis refers to joint problems such as stiff joints, wearing away of cartilage in shoulder & leg joints. To reduce joint problems in your furry companion, make sure to feed him healthy, nutrient-rich food that can make his joint stronger. As dogs get older, their joints begin to thin which can cause pain & discomfort in simple walking. You can also consult your doctor to prescribe some medication to help improve your dog’s joint health.
The next common health problem in senior dogs is kidney ailments. Aging can take a toll on your pooch’s kidneys which can result in developing kidney diseases. To avoid any chronic kidney disease, make sure to get your dog examined every six months. Always keep an eye on your dog’s behavior as it can help in the early detection of any kidney ailments. Dogs with kidney disease show signs which include increased thirst & urination, loss of appetite, nausea, and lethargy, etc.
Cancer is another common issue that your senior dog can suffer from. Dogs can develop cancer at any age but with growing age, the risk of cancer also increases. The best way to deal with cancer in your furry companion is by detecting it at the beginning stages. On noticing any lump or bump on your pooch’s body, or you see him drooling, panting, excessively tired then you should consider taking him to a vet to get him examined.
The next common health problem that can affect your senior dog is vision loss or blindness. Tissue degeneration can develop in dogs as they grow older which can result in causing partial or total blindness. The dog owner should always keep a close eye on his dog’s vision & should consider taking him to a vet regularly to get his eyes examined properly.
So, these are some common health problems that can develop in senior dogs. The dog owner should monitor his furry companion closely so that he can help his dog live a long & healthy life.
Wrapping it up, we can say that regular health checkups & a balanced diet can keep your dog’s health intact. Also, always keep an eye for any unusual behavior & report it to your vet as soon as possible so that any health issue can easily get detected at its early stage.