We all wish our pets could stay young forever. But because aging is a natural part of life, the best thing we can do as pet parents is know what our furry companions need to age comfortably and gracefully. Here are the five most important issues to keep in mind as your pet gets older:
1. Keep Moving
The best starting point for taking care of an aging pet is to make time for daily activity. Although it may be lower impact and at a slower pace than when a pet was young, moving helps combat a lot of problems. Keeping your dog or cat active will help to loosen stiff joints, reduce the risk of pressure sores, and help them keep a positive state of mind.
2. Eliminate Slips and Trips
Keeping your pet active is a very important part of supporting graceful aging. Just be aware that age can increase the risk of slipping or tripping around your home. You can help prevent injuries by making changes like adding nonslip carpet runners to hard floors. Choosing runners with bright patterns can also help a pet with vision issues continue getting around.
3. Provide Easy Access
In addition to eliminating slips and trips, you’ll also want to make it easy for your pet to access what it needs. This can include food and water bowls, as well as essential like your pet’s bed or litter box. Watching your pet can identify where it needs help. Small ramps can help provide provide easy access. As a rule of thumb, the gentler the slope of a ramp, the better.
4. Make Life Comfortable
Getting older can bring a variety of aches and pains. It’s also normal for aging pets to spend more of their time sleeping. You can help your pet continue feeling its best by choosing the ideal style of bed. There are plenty of dog and cat beds that are specifically designed for the needs of senior pets.
You’ll also want to choose the right spot for your pet’s bed. Older animals are more sensitive to both hot and cold, so choose an area in your home where you can keep the temperature consistent.
5. Give Your Pet the Right Nutrition
Keeping your pet active, eliminating household hazards, providing easy access, and making life comfortable will go a long way towards helping your pet as it gets older. Your vet will also be able to provide advice based on your pet’s specific needs. Nutrition is an issue that vets often emphasize for older pets.
Since age changes the specific nutritional needs of both dogs and cats, Pet Wants makes special food blends for senior pets. You can learn more by visiting the website for your local Pet Wants.