Dog ownership is about a lifetime of friendship and good company. And because dog years are faster than human years, our favorite furry companions tend to age a little faster. Your dog may be considered a “senior puppy” anywhere between five years and fifteen years depending on their breed and personal constitution. But that doesn’t mean the fun times with your pup have to come to an end.
Taking care of a senior dog does require a little extra attention and love. Fortunately, you’ve got those in spades! Now all you need is a quick guide on the best techniques to keep your senior canine buddy as happy and relaxed as he was when you first found each other. Here at Little Friends Pet Sitting and Dog Walking, we’re here to help! We love dogs of all ages and can help you be the same attentive, amazing owner for your senior dog as you have been for the last five, ten, or even fifteen years of dog friendship.
Tip 1) Dog Beds for Aging Bones
As your dog ages, they go through many of the same things that humans do, including arthritis. Dogs tend to get achy as they become seniors, just like people, and they deserve the same kind of comfort technology that humans use. Even if your dog adores their old bed, consider getting them a new one that is extra-soft or features memory foam.
Many dog owners also opt for soft stairs up to the bed or couch. This makes it easier for your senior dog to climb up to ‘snuggle level.’
Tip 2) Design Your Dog’s Diet with Vet Advice
Nutrition is even more important for senior dogs than it is for most dogs. Senior dogs need a complete supply of nutrients and vitamins without loading up on fattening fillers or unhealthy additives. You’ll want to start picking your dog food by reading the ingredient lists, focusing on short lists with easy to understand ingredients.
But from there, you’ll also want to consult with your vet. Your dog might need a special diet to help them maintain a healthy weight or to account for any medical conditions of aging like liver or heart care. Let your vet be your guide when it comes to feeding your senior dog.
Tip 3) Don’t Neglect the Exercise
Believe it or not, senior dogs need exercise, too! In fact, exercise is often the key to helping dogs stay active, healthy, and live longer as they grow old. Even if your dog seems to get tired more easily, they need to take walks and play every day to stay vigorous and strong. Here in Charlotte, there are tons of dog-friendly places you can walk together.
Or, if you don’t have time in your busy schedule, you can rely on Little Friends dog walking service! Our team of active dog lovers understands how to walk an elderly dog. We can help your dog get home before they get tired and take walks that will build your senior dog’s stamina for more energetic walks in the future as well as better overall doggy health.
Tip 4) Brush, Brush, Brush
Your elderly dog needs extra physical care at home. You will want to brush their coat regularly to remove any itchy hairs that fall out and to make sure their skin is still in good condition. Brushing is very important for senior dogs, and not just as a way to bond and spend time together. Dental care is also a vital part of senior dog health and you’ll want to make sure your dog’s teeth are clean and healthy. Consider dental chews if your dog is up for it or, if not, gently brush their teeth with a soft toothbrush about once a week
Tip 5) Spend Plenty of Time Together
Finally, remember to spend plenty of time with your senior dog to remind them how much they are loved. When your dog starts to slow down, it is especially important to lay on the love. Fortunately, senior dogs are pretty chill and lots of your quality time can be spent on leisurely walks or just enjoying your favorite television shows together.
Charlotte, NC is one of the most dog-friendly cities in the nation and your senior dog no-doubt has felt right at home here since puppyhood. As your dog ages, they will need extra love and attention. It’s okay if you need a little help to provide everything your precious pup needs.
Here at Little Friends Pet Sitting and Dog Walking, we are passionate about dogs and would love to help you in any way we can, whether that’s petsitting in your home or taking your senior dog out for some much-needed daily exercise while you’re at work. For more great tips and friendly insights on dog care in Charlotte, NC, contact us today!