We consider pets that are
SEVEN YEARS OLD
or older to be senior-aged pets. Senior pets are a lot like senior humans – they require more frequent checkups and tender loving care to keep them happy and healthy. There is a difference between aging animals and older people, however. Your pet ages much faster than you do, so disease and illness progress faster as well.
Dog Years VS Human Years
7 dog years = 44 – 56 years
10 dog years = 56 – 78 years
15 dog years = 76 – 115 years
20 dog years = 96 – 120 years
Cat Years VS Human Years
7 cat years = 54 years
10 cat years = 63 years
15 cat years = 78 years
20 cat years = 97 years
Getting Older Means Going to the Vet More Often
At Chimacum Valley Veterinary Hospital, we know all the work that goes into keeping an animal healthy over the course of a lifetime, and we understand very well just how important your senior pet is to you. Your furry friend has reached these precious golden years because you’ve done your job as a pet parent, feeding them nourishing food, getting them plenty of exercise and socialization, and showering them with love.
The rest, of course, is up to us, and we have made senior wellness one of our main missions. A large part of that mission is preventative care. Beginning when your pet is seven years old, we recommend twice-yearly exams, as well as regular bloodwork that can check for issues. At this stage in their lives, dogs and cats are more susceptible to contracting health issues, including the following:
- Heart disease
- Liver disease
- Certain types of cancer
Your senior pet’s routine wellness examination gives you an opportunity to discuss concerns and includes specialized lab work to detect early signs of disease processes. Our veterinarians tailor these exams and tests to your pet’s age, breed, lifestyle, and physical condition in order to best meet his or her health needs. We also include information regarding nutrition, pain and arthritis management, and preserving quality of life.
- MOBILITY AIDS – Senior pets may not be able to get around as easily as they used to. You can provide assistance by placing ramps for access to high areas like beds and furniture and adding rugs for improved traction on slippery flooring.
- EXERCISE – Exercise is just as important for senior pets as it is for younger pets. It keeps them mobile, boosts their mood and impedes weight gain.
- COMFORTABLE BEDDING – If you haven’t already done so, consider providing your senior pet with a soft, supportive bed for naptime and bedtime.
- HEALTHY DIET – Aging pets should eat food that is tailored to their age group for optimal digestion and caloric intake.
- CAREFUL MONITORING – Keep a lookout for changes in your pet’s behavior and mood, as they may indicate a health condition. Pay special attention to eating, drinking, sleeping and bathroom patterns. Make sure to let your vet know about any changes.