How to care for older dogs

Older dogs are often much easier and less time consuming than young dogs. They make great companions and their ability to understand human body language means we often feel they’re in tune with us.

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What to feed older dogs

Consider changing your dog’s food to a senior diet and feed them smaller meals two to three times a day. Avoid feeding them snacks in-between meals as obesity can be a problem in older, less active dogs.

Exercising older dogs

They may be less active, but it’s important your dog still has daily walks to keep their brain active and joints mobile. Allow your dog to set the pace and try to go for frequent short walks rather than one long walk.

Look after your dog’s health

Have your dog checked by a vet at least twice a year and look out for signs of:

  • loss of appetite
  • coughing or breathing difficulties
  • growths or lumps on his body
  • weakness, lameness or reluctance to exercise
  • increased thirst or urination
  • diarrhoea or constipation
  • a fever or an increase in heart or breathing rate
  • changes in behaviour
  • check your dog’s teeth regularly

Changes in your dog’s behaviour

Be aware that older dogs are more sensitive to loud or sudden noises and tend to sleep more. Make time to play games with them to help them remain mentally active. Many behavioural changes in older dogs are due to an underlying medical disorder – seek advice from a vet if you have any concerns

There is never a shortage of older dogs at our rehoming centres looking for a new place to call their own, with many years of life left to enjoy.

Unfortunately, older dogs are more difficult to rehome. By offering one of our senior residents a loving new home you will be making a personal contributiom to animal welfare. take a look at all of our older dogs currently looking for homes.