How to Care for Your Senior Pet

Senior pet care.

Since pets age so much faster than humans, it sometimes seems like we blink and they’ve reached their golden years. Older animals require different care than puppies and kittens do, so if your pet is suddenly a senior (around age seven for dogs and cats), your friends at Berkeley Veterinary Center have some helpful care tips for you:

Increase Veterinary Care for Senior Pets

One of the most important elements of caring for senior pets is to bring them in for more veterinary wellness visits annually. While most young dogs and cats only need one wellness visit a year, it is a good idea to increase it to two for senior pets. During a senior wellness visit, we can:

  • Take a blood sample to get a better picture of overall health
  • Perform a urinalysis to look for proteins, sugars, and other substances that could indicate a health issue
  • Take a better look at vital organs with a blood chemistry panel
  • Make sure there are no parasites like roundworm or tapeworm present

Regular veterinary visits as your pet ages help us find and treat any potential health issues early.

Find the Right Food

As pets become seniors, their nutritional requirements change, which is why it is very important to start feeding them food that is designed for older pets. From different caloric needs to more difficulty digesting certain foods, senior pets can benefit greatly from enjoying a diet that is created just for them. 

Keep them Moving

Although senior pets might start to slow down, they are still in need of exercise. Regular movement helps older pets remain mobile longer and it can help strengthen parts that might have weakened (like joints). Exercise is an important element of senior pet care that can help prevent your pet from becoming overweight, which can increase the risk for certain health issues like arthritis and diabetes. Talk to your veterinarian about the best kinds of exercise for your senior pet.

Give them Mental Stimulation

Just like with humans, older pets might start to become somewhat senile. Engaging them in stimulating activities like games can help keep their minds sharp, and it might even improve their mood. If you notice any negative changes in your senior pet’s behavior, please schedule an appointment so we can make sure there isn’t a larger issue at play.

The team at Berkeley Veterinary Center wants to help your pets through every stage of life. From wellness exams to internal medicine, we offer a full range of veterinary services to keep your pets healthy. Call (732) 269-3600 to learn more.

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