A picture of an older Labrador in a field looking at the camera


National Pet Month: Helping your Pet Grow Old

As part of National Pet Month 2016, we thought we would give you some tips and advice for helping your pets as they grow old. Young pups and kittens are full of life and bound around with what seems like an endless supply of energy, but like humans, pets begin to slow down as they age and pet owners have a responsibility to help their pets adapt and thrive in their mature years.

As a member of your family it is only natural that you will want to support your pet the best you can, and ensure their later years are comfortable, healthy and happy. Follow these tips to help your furry friends live a long and enjoyable life.

Ageing Pets: Daily Living

As your pet grows older you may start to notice a change in their mobility, such as difficulty in walking or jumping. Consider how you can help your pets by adapting their living environment. Can their pet bed be adapted to make it easier for them to get in and out of, or do they need more encouragement and prompting to go outside when they need the toilet?

You may also notice a deterioration in their eyesight, so try to avoid changing the layout of their environment. Pets may also need guidance to food bowls or help to access the garden. Poor eyesight and reduced mobility can lead to more accidents in the house, so encouraging your pets to go to the toilet can help with this, but if an accident does occur, get rid of smells on carpets, hard floors and pet bedding with your favourite Zoflora fragrance.

Ageing Pets: Keeping Active

Like us humans, pets are also prone to piling on the pounds as they get older, as they tend to be less active. While it may be hard for older pets to remain active through walking or playing, there are other alternatives such as hydrotherapy exercises which can remove the impact on joints and help to keep less mobile pets active. 

It is important to monitor your pet's diet and weight, as reduced activity due to a lack of mobility may mean that older pets may not need to eat as much. Make sure their diet is adjusted to help them maintain a healthy weight, and seek advice from your vet if you are unsure. 

Also keep an eye on pets losing weight, as this can be a sign of an underlying health issue. 

Ageing Pets: Grooming

As pets age they may find it harder to groom themselves, you may notice that their claws grow longer as they are no longer worn down through activity, or they are less able to keep their fur clean. Help your pets with their grooming by brushing their fur, clipping their claws and keeping them clean. You can either do this yourself or can seek the help of a professional pet groomer. If using a groomer, you may want to stay with your pet to reassure them on their first visit as they can become unsettled in the new environment.

Posted by Zoflora (11/04/2016)