We love our geriatric dogs (aka senior fur babies) and want to keep them healthy and feeling as good as possible for as long as possible. It is our desire to postpone their crossing of the Rainbow Bridge for as long as we can, right?
What kind of special care do we need to provide for our geriatric dogs to achieve our goals as stated above? First of all, a routine physical evaluations by their vet is important for all dogs.
Dogs do not usually cry out due to chronic pain. Whining or crying out is usually reserve for acute, traumatic pain.
Some Indicators of Joint Pain in Geriatric Dogs are:
- Getting up and down more slowly Not getting on the sofa or your bed as often or as easily as when younger.
- Avoiding stairs
- Trouble getting into the car
- Not interacting in a playful manner as they once did
Some Ways to Improve Your Geriatric Dog’s Mobility
- Medication for inflammation and/or pain
- Laser or Acupuncture therapy
- Diet and supplements designed to help joints and skin
- Weight loss when appropriate
More Than Joint Problems Affect Our Geriatric Dogs
There are medical conditions that are more likely to become problems as our fur babies age. Some of them are:
- Heart Disease
Picking up on the problems listed above as early as possible is important. Beginning treatment for any of them sooner rather than later can often extend the life of your best friend.
Be Sure to Keep Your Geriatric Dog’s Teeth Clean
Don’t ignore canine dental care. More than just keeping their teeth clean, they can pick up problems that can make it hard for the dog to eat well. Poor nutrition because they cannot chew well can cause health problems.
If caught and treated early, dental disease can be cured before it does serious damage to your dog’s overall health. Just like with humans, there is a connection between poor dental care and their overall health.
How To Prepare For Your Geriatric Dog’s Vet Appointment
Prior to your dog’s visit with the veterinarian, make a list of your concerns and questions. This helps ensure a more complete and effective evaluation of your dog’s health. It also ensures a better wellness plan to keep them as healthy as they can be.
Of course, we all know that a healthy diet and regular exercise are important for all living creatures. As our fur babies age, we need to adjust their diets to fit their circumstances.
Dog food companies go to great effort to develop specific product lines for each of a dog’s life. Be sure to give them a high quality food designed to fit their needs.
Although they may move a little slower and not have the same stamina as they did as puppies, exercise is still important to them. If you see signs of arthritis or other joint problems, be sure to mention this to your vet.
Keeping them at a healthy weight is important, not only for minimizing joint pain but to avoid stressing their hearts as well. They may require steps or a ramp to get into the car or onto your bed. Orthopedic dog beds are also available. https://happymutt.org/6-benefits-of-an-orthopedic-dog-bed/