Once dogs are over 7 years old, they are the human equivalent of middle age and are considered seniors. Dogs at this age require a little more care than their younger counterparts and you may notice them ‘slowing down’ or changes in their lifestyle and behavioural patterns. Whilst this change of speed is common in senior animals, if can also be an indication of a health problem.

We recommend bringing your senior dog in for twice yearly health checks as at this age, illnesses can develop and health can deteriorate much faster than in a younger dog. Below are some of the most common health conditions in senior dogs which need to be monitored and treated through regular visits to the vet.

Dental disease

Untreated dental disease is a common problem in senior dogs which often goes unnoticed by owners who mistakenly assume that if their pet can still eat well, the condition of their teeth must be okay. In most cases, the animal has simply learnt to chew differently to avoid aggravating the condition. Bringing your pet in for regular complimentary dental check-ups at our clinic ensure dental disease is caught and treated early.

Chronic health conditions

We recommend annual blood and urine tests for animals over ten years old to screen for age related diseases such as diabetes, kidney disease, liver disease and tumours. With many of these conditions, the animal may not show symptoms until the disease is well advanced and they are in a significant amount of pain, so screening for them with a blood and urine test is a quick, easy and pain free way to pick up on these conditions early.

Arthritis

Arthritis is a common (and painful) disease for senior dogs but it can be easily managed with changes at home and various medications. Common signs of arthritis include a slower walking pace, stiffness when getting up, or lower activity levels.

Lumps and bumps

Skin tumours come with the territory of being a senior dog. Although most lumps aren’t anything to worry about, some can be serious and have a significant impact on your dog’s quality of life. All lumps should be checked out by a veterinarian to ensure they are not cancerous.

Pet Care

  • Signs of poor digestive health in your dog or cat can be uncomfortable for your pet and be a cause of concern for you. Some owners write these signs off as a ‘sensitive stomach’, and either tolerate the symptoms – feeling as though that’s normal for their pet, or try various different diets in the …
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  • Like us, our pets can unfortunately fall victim to the ‘middle-aged spread’ and put on weight. This occurs due to the natural slowing of the metabolism associated with ageing, which can predispose your pet to excessive weight gain. For this reason, depending on the lifestage of your pet, we often recommend varying their dietary and …
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  • It can sometimes be hard to know which injuries or illnesses are emergencies and require a veterinary consultation or more urgent veterinary care. Which symptoms suggest urgent care is required? As a general guide, your pet should be seen urgently if they are showing any of the following symptoms: Difficulty breathing Difficulty passing urine Bloody …
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