This senior dog care article provides tips and resources for adjusting meal plan, exercise, medications, exposure to other people and pets, napping, grooming, and daily routine.
When your dog begins to age you may notice changes in activity level and challenges in basic daily routine. For example you dog may find physical activity more difficult, may spend more time napping during the day, or may not be as attentive during exercise and training activities.
Depending on your dog’s health this may be a gradual decline in activity as she ages. English Cream Golden Retrievers are commonly active, agile, and happiest when they have an active routine. Throughout his/her life, and as your dog ages, you may notice activity level slowing down.
Senior Dog Care — Checklist
As you explore the checklist ask yourself “has this been a gradual or sudden change” because sudden changes are often signs of the need for a prompt visit to the veterinarian. See When to Call the Veterinarian in Addition to Regular Checkups.
- Monitor activity.
- For example: If your dog has walked an hour with you every day and gradually wants to rest after 30 minutes instead of walking an hour without missing a step. Let her rest. But keep taking her with you.
- Watch for difficulties (climbing stairs, laying down and getting up).
- Keep notes of any difficulties in mobility.
- Watch for difficulty while eating or digestion issues.
- While you watch your dog eat check for difficulty chewing (in case of dental issues) or in digestion (watch for diarrhea, gas, stomach pain, or constipation).
- Increase supervision when playing outside.
- Outdoor elements, people, other pets, and wildlife often present older dogs with increased challenges. By accompanying your dog while outdoors you are in a better position to intervene or offer assistance when needed.
- Your dog may have medication to take and it is important to be informed about what the medication is for, when to contact the vet, how long to take it, and what side effects to watch for. Keep track of dosage (a chart or calendar) so it is easy to monitor medication over time).
- Healthy food and treats are important from birth and throughout life. We feed our dogs Life’s Abundance. We also use Life’s Abundance treats, supplements, and have for many years. We wouldn’t feed them anything else.
Throughout your dog’s life be mindful of health. A healthy lifestyle, regular activity, healthy food, nutritious treats, regular veterinarian checkups, and plenty of love work together to make later years more enjoyable for both of you.
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