Caring Hands Veterinary Clinic in Philadelphia, PA, and Veterinarian Sajeesh Thomas specializes in senior pet care. We are the premier Philadelphia vet and animal hospital dealing with geriatric pets, improving pets’ lives one at a time.
Senior Pet Care
Senior pet care requires an entirely different set of measures than care for younger pets. When your best friend becomes a senior, their longevity depends on breed, genetics, nutrition, exercise, and environment. Once they reach this phase of life, it is up to you to monitor for diseases and conditions, provide them with an adequate specialized diet, and be proactive with their health care. All these things will determine their quality of life and life span, and they depend on you.
Conditions that Affect Senior Pets
Just as in humans, there are many diseases and conditions that may afflict a senior pet. Your veterinarian or animal hospital can help diagnose the ailments and provide therapies and treatments to improve your pet’s quality of life and longevity. Please review these common diseases, conditions, and behavioral changes to monitor:
Common Diseases and Conditions Recognized in Senior Pet Care
These are some of the afflictions that may affect geriatric pets:
- Inflammatory issues
- Heart disease
- Kidney or urinary tract disease
- Liver disease
- Joint or bone disease
- Weakness or frailty
Common Behavioral Changes in Senior Pets
Here are behavioral changes to watch for:
- Sensitivity to sounds
- Increased vocalization
- Aggression or protective behavior
- Disrupted sleep cycles
If your senior pet is affected by any of these conditions, schedule an appointment with your vet to get the best information on therapies, treatments, and a course of action. Then, make sure you are feeding your older pet the proper diet they need to thrive.
Dietary Requirements for Geriatric Pets
With so many changes in your senior pet’s condition and behavior, one of the most essential and effective things you can do is provide them with a healthy diet. When they have the proper nutrition, their health can improve significantly.
These are a few recommendations to improve your senior pet’s diet:
- If your pet has kidney disease, it may be helpful to reduce dietary phosphorous in their meals.
- If it suffers from heart disease, try lowering dietary sodium.
- Reducing the daily intake of calories will help obese pets lose weight and become healthier.
- Some older pets can benefit from a higher fiber intake, but not if they are underweight since high fiber foods usually have lower calories.
- Most often, supplements are not needed. However, some may help improve symptoms of certain diseases and ailments.
Being Proactive with Senior Pet Care
Despite all the diseases and conditions that may affect your senior pet, there are several things you can do to improve their quality of life and well-being. Diet is one primary measure, but there are plenty more.
Here are things you can do to enhance your pet’s life and health significantly:
- Schedule regular wellness visits with your vet.
- Provide your pet with daily exercise to keep joints, muscles, and blood flow moving.
- Give them proper dental hygiene.
- Take measures to keep them safe, like removing dangerous objects and erecting baby gates where needed.
- If your senior pet suffers from joint pain, provide them with accessibility equipment such as a wheelchair or orthopedic beds.
- Take the time to give them daily mental stimulation to keep their cognitive capabilities sharp.
- Always give them affection and physical contact.
How Caring Hands Veterinary Clinic Can Provides Senior Pet Care
At Caring Hands Veterinary Clinic, we are the leading Philadelphia vet in the region. Our expert veterinarian is dedicated to providing the highest quality of pet care available. Your pet’s improved health and well-being are our mission.
Some of the ways we provide senior pet care are through:
- Immunizations and vaccinations
- Wellness exams
- Dental care
- Surgery, when necessary
- Digital radiography
- Emergency and urgent care