Once you are aware that your dog is moving on in years, there a preventative steps you can take to keep him happy, healthy and active. Let’s look at helping your aging dog, so he may continue having a great life.

Hey! Where’d My Ribs Go!

An overweight dog will run the risks of health problems such as diabetes, joint problems, liver or kidney malfunctions. As tempting as it is to give your pup that extra treat – don’t! Cut back on treats, as a general rule these treats have quite a few calories and fatty elements.

Taking your hands on both of his sides and feeling for his rib cage will tell you if he’s putting on too much weight. If you can not feel his ribs, it’s time for a diet.

Killing your dog with kindness is just wrong and certainly is not helping your aging dog. Table scraps have never ever been a good thing for dogs, but if you have been doing this over the years, you must stop that now. If you have children, let them know they must not continue to sneak food under the table, explaining to them why.

Could I Talk You Into Moving That Water Bowl Over Here?

As dogs age, getting around becomes a little more challenging. Some dogs might have a problem getting to their water bowl. You might want to set up water bowls in various areas so he will always have one close enough for him to get to. Always be sure he has fresh water at all times. Drinking plenty of water will keep his kidneys and his liver healthy.

I Really Don’t Want a Scenic Tour – Just a Nice Walk

Cut back on walking distances as your dog ages. Shorter walks will help his circulation and possibly prevent an early onslaught of arthritis. New sights and smells are still very important for keeping your dog’s curiosity going and he needs that special time with you. But distances might be hard on his joints and he might tire more quickly.

Hey! That Dry Stuff Hurts!

As dogs age you might need to switch from dry food to canned food. Their teeth might not be able to handle the hardness in dry food. Even though your dog’s teeth have had regular cleanings and care, with age their teeth will become somewhat softer and need softer foods to alleviate the situation.

Helping your aging dog is not difficult at all, just sensible. Looking out for and taking great care of your pup means regular visits to the vet and changing some everyday activities. Changing his diet and understanding his limitations as he ages, are all apart of keeping him healthy, safe and happy as he enters his senior years.

 

Old Dogs: Are the Best Dogs
 By Gene Weingarten

 

 

 

 

 

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