We all love our pups, especially when they get older and become our faithful companions. But, unfortunately, as dogs age their health deteriorates and we need to be aware of the common health problems that can affect senior pooches. The more we learn about the common health problems of older dogs, the more we can understand them and step in when needed.
When it comes to age-related health problems, perhaps arthritis is the one that springs to mind for most people. It’s caused by wear and tear on the joints which weakens them and makes them more prone to inflammation and pain. It’s important to seek medical advice as soon as you notice any signs of arthritis in your aging pup, including limping or difficulty getting up from lying down. Conservation measures such as providing a comfortable bed and avoiding too much exercise can help reduce the risk of joint problems.
Sadly, many older dogs experience heart disease. This occurs when the heart becomes enlarged or weak, and it can lead to problems with blood flow throughout the body. Signs of heart disease include difficulty breathing, coughing and fatigue. If detected early, you can manage your pet’s symptoms with medication and lifestyle changes (such as restricting exercise).
Kidney problems are also common in older dogs, and they can lead to serious health complications. Symptoms of kidney disease include drinking and urinating more than usual as well as a lack of appetite. If you notice any changes in your dog’s behaviour or routine that could suggest kidney disease, seek veterinary advice immediately. In terms of treatments, diet changes and medication can help slow the progression of kidney disease.
Similar to humans, dogs are prone to cancer as they get older. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to detect early as many types of cancer don’t display any outward symptoms until they have reached an advanced stage. This is why it’s important to take your pup for regular check-ups with the vet so that any potential problems can be identified. If cancer is detected early, there are various treatments available such as chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation therapy.
Next, hearing loss is also common in older dogs and can affect their quality of life. Hearing loss may be gradual or sudden, but either way, you’ll need to seek veterinary advice on how you can best manage the condition. It’s a good idea to keep your pup away from loud noises as much as possible, install visual signals (such as lights) to help them stay aware of their surroundings, and provide extra companionship if they show signs of confusion or distress.
As our beloved pups get older, they may develop health problems that can impact their quality of life. As a loving owner, you need to be aware of the common health problems that can affect older dogs, such as arthritis, heart disease, kidney disease, and cancer. With regular check-ups and care from a veterinarian, these conditions can be managed and your pup will have a comfortable life in their golden years.
As well as keeping an eye out for the signs of problems, it’s also worth exploring senior dog supplements in Australia that can help boost your pooch’s immune system, reduce inflammation, and improve their overall well-being. With the right care and attention, older dogs can continue to enjoy life just like any other pup.