As dogs and cats get older, they need more attention and special care. Our senior wellness program can help them remain fit and healthy as they age. It also helps us to catch any potential problems earlier when they’re easier to treat or manage. In some cases, regular veterinary exams can help your dog or cat live longer, too!
When is my dog or cat considered a senior?
Senior status varies depending on their breed and size. Smaller dogs tend to live longer than larger dogs, and cats generally live longer than dogs. We can help you determine what life stage your dog or cat is in. Before your dog or cat reaches senior status, we recommend that you bring them in for a baseline exam and diagnostic workup. This will give us a record of what’s normal for them so we can keep track of any changes. In most cases, we suggest this checkup when your dog turns 7 years of age or your cat turns 8 years of age. Thereafter, your senior dog or cat will benefit from more frequent veterinary exams and diagnostic testing.
Why is early diagnosis important for senior cats and dogs?
Diagnosing diseases and certain conditions early is important throughout a cat or dog’s life, but it becomes even more critical when they enter their senior years. The risks of arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, hormone disorders, and kidney and liver problems all increase with age. In addition, dogs and cats often do not show any signs of even serious diseases until they are advanced.
How do bi-yearly checkups improve their health?
We can treat many symptoms that are commonly attributed to age, including those associated with cognitive dysfunction syndrome (similar to Alzheimer’s in humans). We can also improve your senior dog or cat’s quality of life in many ways including identifying and preventing or reducing pain, recommending a nutrition and exercise plan, and suggesting environmental modifications. We will tailor a senior wellness plan to your dog or cat’s individual needs. If you have any questions, we can discuss our senior wellness program in more detail. Call us today to schedule your dog or cat’s exam at 905-571-3700.