When is your pet considered a senior?
It can be difficult to pinpoint when a pet has entered his or her "senior years", but on average, around the age of 8 or 9 years old depending on breed/size for both dogs and cats. It is often around this age that we start to see a change in physical health in our pets, and when recommended screening and wellness checks are brought up.
Why do we care about promoting optimal care and providing preventative and therapeutic medicine for our senior pets?
For starters, we are our animal’s caregivers, therefore we are responsible for providing our pets with a life that is as close to free from pain and discomfort as possible. Our best chance at achieving this is through preventative medicine (preventing serious problems before they start) as well as early detection of problems, allowing us to come up with effective treatment plans. As your veterinary healthcare providers, it is up to us to carefully examine your pet, ask in depth questions about how your animal is doing at home, go over options for tests that can give us insight into your pet’s body systems, and recommend activities, medications, supplements and diet changes that may make a big difference in your senior pet’s health and comfort.
Additional areas to think about when evaluating an aging pet:
- Quality of Life
- Red Flags
- Diagnostic Screening
- Common Diseases
- Diet Recommendations
- Financial Considerations
- Cognitive Dysfunction (Senility)
- Saying Goodbye