Adopting a dog means taking on the responsibility of caring for that dog for the entirety of its life. Even if you have adopted a fairly low-maintenance breed dog, every dog will need more attention and care as he or she ages. Furthermore, watching your dog age and enter into the senior phase of life can be a difficult thing to do.
Thankfully, there are several changes that you can make both to your home and to your dog’s routine and lifestyle that can make the aging process much easier on both of you. However, it is important to be aware of the key signs of aging in dogs so that you can adapt when the time is right.
Ultimately, you would do anything for the dog who has been a part of your family for so many years, including making a few simple changes to your home to make it more accessible for them and to your routine to give them the attention they need. With that in mind, here are a few things you can do to give your senior dog the very best care.
Accessibility in the Home
As dogs age, their joints and muscles will become weaker than they once were. This means that there will come a time when your dog, who once loved to jump around and run all day, will find it difficult to pull themselves up onto their favorite spot on the sofa. You can help make this transition much easier on your dog by making a few changes to your home.
Firstly, you do not want to wait until your dog has lost too much mobility to make these changes. When you first notice them slowing down and becoming a bit weaker is the right time to introduce them to these changes. This will help them understand better how to utilize these changes and avoid injury.
An automatic sliding door is going to come in handy as your dog will likely need to have access to the backyard more frequently throughout the day. There is a great selection of such devices from Evo Products to choose from.
You should also bring in ramps to help your dog do things like get up on the sofa or the bed without straining themselves. Moreover, if your dog frequently accompanies you out and about, a ramp for your car is also a good thing to have.
Diet and Exercise
While it is true that aging dogs need less exercise than younger ones, they will still need a certain amount each day to stay physically fit. Routine exercise will help your dog’s joints stay stronger for longer and will also help ward off other health issues that the specific breed might commonly experience.
You should also switch out your dog’s food to give them a more senior-oriented diet. Quality senior dog foods will provide the specific nutrients that your pup needs to age well and continue living its best life for as long as possible.