For most people, a dog becomes a beloved family member the day he is brought home. Dogs can provide years of loyal companionship, but as a dog ages, he will need extra love and care. As a dog owner, it is important to know how to properly care for your senior dog to help keep him as happy and healthy as possible. Caring for a senior dog is not overly difficult; it just takes a little bit more time and attention. If your canine family member is older, use the following tips to care for your senior dog:
Invest in Quality Dog Food
Senior dogs have different needs than puppies and younger dogs, and these needs include the type of food that they need to eat. If you want to keep your older dog healthy, it is important to feed him the right food. Ideally,your senior dog should eat a high-quality dog food that is specifically formulated for senior dogs. Dog food formulated for senior dogs provide the calories and nutrients that your dog needs to be healthy. Since senior dogs are typically less active than younger dogs, choosing a dog food made for senior dogs can also help with weight control.
Give Your Dog Pet Supplements
An easy way to help maintain your dog's health when he is older is by giving him pet supplements. One of the most popular supplements for dogs is glucosamine. It is believed that glucosamine can help strengthen joints and help with arthritis. Fish oil may also be beneficial for older dogs; some believe that fish oil can also help with arthritis as well as skin issues. You may also want to give your dog vitamin supplements to help ensure that he is getting all of the nutrients and minerals that he needs.
Make Exercise a Priority
Older dogs may be less active than younger dogs, but that doesn't mean that senior dogs should be completely sedentary. It is very important to ensure that your senior dog gets ample exercise in order to keep him healthy. Your senior dog does not need strenuous exercise; daily walks are enough to keep him in good condition. Pay attention to how your dog acts when walking him. If he shows signs of tiredness or exhaustion, plan on taking shorter walks. Letting your dog dictate the lengths of the walks will help ensure that he gets the amount of exercise that he needs.