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Growing Old Gracefully-How to Help Your Aging Pet

November 2, 2011

Everyone remembers the day they got their new puppy or kitten. The excitement as you brought them home for the first time, letting them explore their new surroundings, watching them zoom through the house. It seemed like they would never run out of energy.

But, time passes, as it has a way of doing, without us even noticing. One day you wake up and realize that your dog, which used to jump onto the landing without touching a single step, now can’t make it up at all.  Your kitten who once leaped from couch to chair without even pausing to look, now takes her time just getting up on the furniture. Sadly,  pets age quicker than we do. But just as there are things that can help us age gracefully, there are things we can do to help our pets in their senior years as well.

Many of the same conditions that affect us can affect your pet, and as with most medical conditions, the sooner a problem is diagnosed, the better the chances of successfully treating your pet. Often,   problems develop so slowly, we may not realize there is a problem until it’s developed into a critical or even life-threatening situation. This is especially true in older pets.

Some of the things that can be found through senior wellness exams are:

Early signs of kidney problems/failure

Early signs of liver disease


Glaucoma, cataracts, dry eye and other eye issues


Dental issues-periodontal disease, broken teeth

Heart conditions, such as murmurs and arrhythmia



The sooner these conditions are diagnosed, the better the chances that they can be treated. Also, early diagnosis prevents unnecessary discomfort or pain for your pet and the costs associated with treatment are generally less as well.

An ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure.

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