Extra Care for Senior Pets
In general, when your pet turns 7 years of age, he or she is considered a senior pet. Due to advanced age, we recommend geriatric pets receive wellness examinations performed at least twice yearly. Pets with underlying medical conditions may need to be evaluated more frequently.
During the wellness visit, your veterinarian will be specifically addressing any changes that may be suggestive of discomfort or an underlying medical condition. Changes in any of the following require further investigation:
- Behavior (such as pacing at night)
- Comfort and energy level
- Elimination habits
- Water consumption
Medical conditions at this age are primarily related to an aging body. These include conditions such as: kidney, dental, and heart disease; arthritis; dementia; and cancer. Laboratory testing evaluates organ function and provides indicators of your pet’s overall health. Additionally, detecting infections with regular heartworm and fecal examinations helps keep your dog and your family parasite free. Your veterinarian will discuss a treatment plan with you to address your aging companion’s specific needs.
Continue your home preventive medicine program outlined by your veterinarian, including:
- Daily tooth brushing
- Regular exercise
- Preventive medications for heartworm, fleas, ticks, and intestinal parasites.
Please keep an open discussion between your family and our veterinary team regarding concerns you may have about how your aging pet is progressing through this life stage. Your veterinary team wants to help guide you through making the best choices for your canine family member. Contact us to schedule your pet’s senior wellness exam.