As pets enter the age of senescence, it is the responsibility of pet parents to make the routine adjustments to match changes in the body and their immune system which make them prone to health problems in older age.
Some note-worthy tips to ensure the health and happiness of senior pets are –
Pet supplements such as probiotics, digestive enzymes and fish oil for dogs can be a great addition to your dog’s diet. They not only help to maintain dietary balance, but also promote healthy digestive and immune systems that increase the natural resistance of pets against diseases.
Fish oil for dogs contains Eicosapentaenoic (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic (DHA) acids, two essential Omega-3 acids, produced in limited quantities in dogs.
Researches reveal that the deficiency of fatty acids like Omega-3 and Omega-6 in dogs can lead to severe disorders such as atopic dermatitis, auto-immune disorders and steatosis as well as heart and kidney problems.
Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA act as anti-inflammatory agents, reducing the impact of inflammatory enzymes produced by body fats. Reduction of inflammation prevents heart, kidney and skin inflammation conditions, promoting a shiny and healthier coat, while helping with weight loss in overweight dogs.
In fact, a study published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine revealed that overweight dogs fed on calorie-restricted diets lost a considerable amount of weight when fatty acids were supplemented.
Fish oil for dogs has also been found to influence growth and development of unborn puppies. Research suggests that mother dogs, fed on diets rich in marine-derived Omega-3 acids gave birth to puppies with significantly improved visual performance.
Regular Visits to Veterinarians
Regular visits to veterinary doctors can significantly improve the early diagnosis and treatment of issues which may impact the dog’s health.
Age-related diseases like cognitive dysfunction or dementia can have symptoms which are difficult to detect. A veterinary physician will undertake a thorough physical assessment of the dog to detect early signs of potentially serious illnesses. Moreover, regular checkups also provide pet owners the opportunity to consult physicians regarding behavioral issues affecting senior pets.
Providing the Best Diet
Feeding raw food or quality commercial food not only makes them feel better, but also reduces their susceptibility to illness and diseases. Adding human foods like carrots and oatmeal along with supplements like fish oil for dogs to meet the nutritional requirements of pets is a good option.
However, pet owners should be careful when introducing dietary changes to avoid stomach ailments and diarrhea.
Therefore, it is recommended to supplement new food with the dog’s current diet and gradually increase the quantity every week. Once the pet gets used to more variety, they can easily tolerate dietary changes.
Rebecca is a vet and owns 2 dogs, a cat and a cockatoo.