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Five Tips to Keep Your Senior Pets Healthy

Terri Rock - Monday, September 19, 2016

1st Professional Pet Sitters loves our elderly cats and dogs. In order to keep them in prime health and living for many more years to come, here are some tips to consider: 

  1. Take them to the vet regularly. Your cats and dogs should have a check-up with your local veterinarian at least once or twice every year, if they seem fine. Of course as problems arise, they should go in as needed. This is important because you could be preventing diseases before they are apparent.
  2. Take care of their teeth. Brush your cats and dogs teeth daily. You can also supplement with dental treats, if daily is unrealistic for you. Keeping your pets’ mouths healthy is important to prevent dental disease, which could make it difficult for them to eat.
  3. Help them maintain a healthy weight. Obesity can lead to serious conditions such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease, so this tip should not be taken lightly. Healthy weight can be achieved by a good diet and regular exercise. Your vet should be able to help you choose the right pet food; special diets may need to be considered for existing conditions such as arthritis or kidney disease.
  4. Be accommodating. If your pet loses their sight, be sure to use a pet gate and move dangerous objects out of their way. If your pet loses their hearing, consider using hand gestures to communicate. For pets with arthritis, opt for comfortable cushions for sleeping, soft flooring where possible, and ramps in lieu of stairs.
  5. Watch out for behavioral changes. Contact your vet if you notice a change in appetite, thirst or activity. If your pet seems like they are in pain, are losing hair, gaining or losing weight rapidly, and/or have a drastic personality change, you should also let your vet know. Many pet owners just brush it off as normal aging habits; it could be a sign of a serious disease.
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