Senior pets should see us for a veterinary exam every six months. As pets age, they tend to develop more health issues that must be closely monitored. These checkups are like pet owners’ annual checkups, where a lot can change in a short time. To book your pet’s next appointment, please contact us at 613-258-5745.
What should I pay attention to as my pet ages?
As a pet owner, it’s important to take note of any changes you notice in your pet, especially as they’re getting older. Changes in appearance or behaviour can often signal illness. However, if detected early on, we can work to either minimize or ease the effects of certain health conditions. One of the most important things you can do for your senior pet is to ensure they maintain a healthy weight. Many health issues are linked to obesity and a decrease in physical activity. Your pet will also need adjustments to their usual diet. Specially formulated senior pet foods with lower calories and high-quality protein content are available at our hospital.
How can I keep my pet active?
The first step is maintaining a regular exercise routine. However, it’s important to remember your pet won’t be as fast or agile as they were in their younger years. You’ll need to make adjustments like playing for smaller increments of time or introducing more low-intensity activities like walks or swimming. If you notice your pet is struggling with any of these activities and is limping or has issues lying down or climbing stairs, this could be a sign of arthritis. Please share this with our team during your next appointment.
What health concerns do you monitor them for?
We typically monitor the same issues for cats and dogs who’ve had their 7th birthday, with a few differences. For dogs, we pay close attention to heart changes. For cats, we look out for renal disease. For both pets, we monitor:
- Thyroid disease
- Dental disease
- Blood chemistry panel