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How to Keep Your Older Dog Active

by | Jun 20 2020

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), dogs that are seven years of age or older qualify for the senior pet status.

 

Similar to what happens to us humans, our canine friends can slow down as they age, requiring more sleep and developing physical conditions, such as heart disease, visual problems and arthritis. Additionally, a sudden change in behaviour is also a common symptom of ageing in dogs, which can include increased anxiety and confusion.

 

Fortunately, it’s completely possible to alleviate these conditions and improve your pet’s quality of life. First and foremost, it’s important to keep your older dog active and healthy, and here are ten tips for doing just that!

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

1 – Go for a more nutritional diet

Senior pets can develop peculiar eating habits, become obese or even experience loss of appetite, meaning they have different nutritional needs and require a special diet. There are plenty of pet foods that are designed specifically for elderly dogs.

 

Usually, these brands add certain types of antioxidants to their formula, such as vitamin E, omega six and beta-carotene.

 

In addition to that, fruits and vegetables are rich sources of nutrients that can boost the immune system of your companion, making them feel stronger and more energetic.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

2 – Don’t forget to exercise

Doctors are always emphasising the importance of practising physical exercises, and that goes for both humans and our dogs. Exercising every day is crucial and should not be forgotten, so even if it’s just a gentle walk through the park, take your furry friend out every day and ensure they enjoy this moment together.

 

As well as offering a variety of benefits to the body, such as strengthening the muscles and improving the heart’s health, walking can keep your dog’s senses sharp and contribute to an active mind.

 

 

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How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

3 – Keep things interesting

As a geriatric, your dog might lose interest in certain activities that you two used to do together, so it’s important to try and keep them interested in playing and socialising.

 

New toys and play sessions can maintain the interest of your pet and contribute a lot to keeping them active and happy. One of the many creative things that can be useful in this process is using game scents and food puzzles; those will prevent boredom and stimulate your pooch’s mind.

 

Furthermore, exploring new places and teaching new tricks can also encourage your friend to be curious and interactive.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

4 – Give more attention

In order to ensure your companion gets the motivation that they need to perform new dynamics and continue active, it’s essential to give him or her as much attention as you can. Senior pets usually tend to experience a decrease in hearing, smelling and other important senses, meaning they will need more attention than usual to complete certain activities.

 

Old dogs can still do a lot of things, from playing to learning new tricks but as much as a puppy, they need time and attention to effectively stay happy.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

5 – Stimulating social interactions

Socialising is definitely one of the things that make pooches the happiest. Therefore, if possible, always ensure to take yours out for a great time with other dogs. For instance, try experimenting with new places at the park or even a pet store where the environment is favourable to social interactions.

 

Be creative but more importantly, be understanding of your pet’s circumstances, certifying yourself to provide care and attention to your dog at all times.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

6 – Soothe your dog’s aches

Unfortunately, joint pain is one of the most common and aggressive symptoms of ageing pets, and that contributes to a lack of interest in staying active.

 

However, along with other measures, such as massages and acupuncture, keeping them warm can help soothe sore joints and increase blood flow, which promotes pain relief and an overall feeling of comfort. Simply use warm towels or hot baths for that, it’s easy yet quite effective.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

7 – Invest in training sessions

Geriatrics tend to suffer from joint aches and other painful symptoms that can cause a lot of frustration. In order to avoid that from happening to your friend and ensuring they stay active, it’s important to give extra attention to their health.

 

According to Mikkel Becker, a dog training specialist, training sessions can be an excellent tool to keep your older dog active.

 

 

VetIQ Arthriti-UM - Mark + Chappell

VetIQ Arthriti-UM® Advanced Hip & Joint Care

Specifically developed for the maintenance of healthy bones & supple joints.

Find out more >

VetIQ Senior Care - Mark + Chappell

VetIQ Senior Care – Superior Senior Supplement

Specially formulated to help provide superior health support for cats & dogs aged 6 years and over.

Find out more >

Healthy Treats - Mark + Chappell

VetIQ Healthy Treats Joint & Hip Care

Helps support and maintain mobility in joints and the overall condition and flexibility of your pet.

Find out more >

 

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

8 – Invent new signals to teach your senior dog

Unfortunately, as our canine friends age, they start having a variety of problems related to their senses, such as hearing loss and difficulty in smelling things. This can be a problem since they require these senses to localise themselves and feel safe.

 

However, teaching your dog new signs can be a good solution to keep your dog active in activities like dinner, walk or bedtime.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

9 – Experiment with water activities

Training is a great solution to prevent your dog from feeling too tired. That said, along with regular training sessions, you can also incorporate new things to the schedule, in order to keep your older dog active.

 

In addition to making your pup’s day more exciting, swimming and other underwater activities can contribute a lot to keeping them active.

 

How to Keep Your Older Dog Active - Mark and Chappell

10 – Don’t over do it

While it’s important to keep your older dog active, don’t overdo it on activities that can culminate to more pain.

 

Staying physically active is good, but elderly pets need to rest and relax as much as they require to play. So work on planning gentle walks along with a healthy diet and regular visits to the vet.

 

There is no doubt that with the proper care, your four-legged friend will stay healthy, happy and active through their golden years.

 

 

VetIQ Arthriti-UM - Mark + Chappell

VetIQ Arthriti-UM® Advanced Hip & Joint Care

Specifically developed for the maintenance of healthy bones & supple joints.

Find out more >

VetIQ Senior Care - Mark + Chappell

VetIQ Senior Care – Superior Senior Supplement

Specially formulated to help provide superior health support for cats & dogs aged 6 years and over.

Find out more >

Healthy Treats - Mark + Chappell

VetIQ Healthy Treats Joint & Hip Care

Helps support and maintain mobility in joints and the overall condition and flexibility of your pet.

Find out more >

 

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