Senior Pet Wellness Care
Thanks to first-rate veterinary care, pets are now living longer lives than ever before. It also means that senior pet care is becoming more important for owners to know about. If you have a pet that is getting into the advanced years, you will want to make sure that he is receiving the best care possible, to live a happy and healthy life for as long as possible. At Firestone Animal Hospital in Downy, CA, we take the wellness of senior pets seriously!
Old Age in Pets
Cats and dogs live much shorter lives than people. Although it varies with each pet, cats and small breed dogs generally enter their senior years when they reach seven years of age (six years for large breed dogs). However, this doesn't mean they are suddenly elderly and frail at these ages. It just means that they are entering their elder years, and their health needs are beginning to change.
Health Problems in Senior Pets
Just like people, pets start to become at greater risk for certain illnesses and conditions when they enter their senior years. As pets age, their immune systems become weaker and become more susceptible to specific problems, such as:
- Heart disease
- Liver disease
- Joint problems
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Kidney disease
Wellness Changes for Senior Pets
You should be prepared for changes once your pet starts to become a senior. For example, younger pets can usually get by with a wellness checkup with a veterinarian once a year. For geriatric pets, wellness checks are recommended on a twice-a-year schedule. Wellness checks for senior pets also involve more tests to screen for cancer, liver and kidney disease, diabetes, and other potential problems.
Be prepared to make changes in your pet's diet as he gets older. Our Downey veterinarian can make specific recommendations based on your pet's age, breed, and health. Weight control and suitable exercise become more important as pets get older, so you may need to make changes in your home if your pet starts to experience mobility problems. For example, you may need to move your pet's bed to an area of the home that doesn't require him to climb up or down the stairs. Our vet will discuss all of these issues with you during your pet’s wellness checkups.
Schedule Your Pet’s Wellness Care Appointment Today
If your aging pet is undergoing sudden behavioral changes, it may be time to bring him in for a senior pet wellness checkup at Firestone Animal Hospital. Behavior changes can be an early warning sign that your senior pet is not well. Call our animal hospital in Downey, CA, at 562-928-1341 to schedule an appointment.