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Caring for a Senior Dog

November 15, 2020

Is your canine pal starting to go grey around the muzzle? Is Fido becoming more interested in catching Zs than in catching sheep? Your pet will still be the same cute, lovable pup as always as he grows older, but he’ll need some extra TLC. A Peterborough, ON vet discusses caring for an older dog in this article.


Fido won’t be as playful or rambunctious as a puppy, but he will still need regular activity. If your pooch doesn’t get enough exercise, his muscles may weaken, and even atrophy. Generally, a daily walk is fine for older dogs. Let your canine buddy pick the pace, and head in if he looks tired.


Good nutrition is a crucial cornerstone to your furry best friend’s care regimen. Fido will need a good, high-quality food that is appropriate for his life stage. He may also benefit from certain supplements, such as fish oil or perhaps glucosamine. Ask your vet for specific advice, including portions, snacks, and changing over to a senior-formula pet food.


At this stage of your furry pal’s life, you’ll want to focus more on keeping him comfortable, and less on entertaining him. A good bed is an absolute must! Things like pet ramps or stairs can help your pup get around more easily. Fido may also benefit from things like doggy massage.


Just like people, dogs go through some changes as they age. Fido may have trouble with his vision or hearing, and he may become stiff and sore, especially if he is afflicted by painful conditions, such as hip dysplasia or arthritis. While this article focuses on dogs, it’s worth noting that cats can also suffer from similar issues as they age. For more information on this topic in felines, check out our article on “Osteoarthritis in Cats“. Things like stairs and pools can be very dangerous for older dogs! Take steps to make sure your home is safe and comfy for your pooch.


Although Fido won’t be any more fond of baths now than he was as a puppy, he’ll be much more comfortable with soft, clean fur and clipped nails. If you have a hard time getting your pup in and out of the tub, schedule an appointment with a groomer.

Tail Wags

Last but not least, make sure your canine companion feels loved and safe. Spend time with Fido every day, and indulge his adorable requests for tail wags and belly rubs.

As your Peterborough, ON veterinary clinic, we’re dedicated to offering great care. Regular check-ups and preventive care are especially important for senior pets. To learn more about our comprehensive wellness services, including vaccinations and health screenings tailored for older dogs, visit our Veterinary Wellness & Pet Vaccinations page. Please feel free to contact us anytime.