November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month!

senior pet

When adopting a pet, you’ll need to make a decision on whether to adopt a young or senior pet. There are numerous benefits of adopting a senior cat or dog, but caring for a senior pet is much different.

Adopting a Senior Pet

Introductions with Your Senior Pet

Make sure to go slowly and don’t overdo it. The first days with your senior pet are not the time to invite everyone to meet your new family member. Most senior dogs are amazingly adaptable. However, your new pet will appreciate some quiet time to get to know all of the household members (humans and other pets).

Introduce your new furry friend to other pets in the household individually, particularly if you have two or more other dogs. A great way to begin the bonding process is with a walk in a neutral territory away from your home.

Once the introductions are complete, take your new pet for a tour of the house and yard. Then, let them settle down for some rest after all the “excitement”. Sleep is good and chances are your new family member will be exhausted. If you choose to adopt from the shelter, keep in mind that they are coming from an extremely stressful and noisy place. Therefore, they may sleep almost continuously for the first few days to catch up in the quiet of your home.

Feed Your Senior Pet a Nutritious Diet

Good nutrition is important at every age. However, feeding your pet proper nutrition in their senior years is critical to keeping them active and playful.

Contact All Pets about the type of diet your new senior pet needs. We can make recommendations about quality brands, ingredients or special formulas your senior pet needs to thrive.

Help Your Pet Get Enough Exercise

Getting enough exercise is especially true for senior dogs. While they be slowing down, that does not mean they should spend their days curled up on the couch.

Exercise is a key component in keeping your pet healthy, both physically and mentally. Your dog may be unable to go on long hikes with you. However, shorter, less strenuous walks will keep him feeling good.

Keep Your Senior Pet at a Healthy Weight

Extra pounds on older pets means more stress on their body, including joints and internal organs.

If you feel your pet needs to shed a few pounds, talk with our vet about a weight loss and exercise plan.

Schedule Regular Check Ups for Your Senior Pet

Many things can happen between vet visits. The American Animal Hospital Association recommends senior dogs visit their vets at least once every six months.

There are many diseases and health issues that can be treated if caught early enough.

Don’t Neglect Your Senior Pet’s Teeth

Regular dental care is another critical component for senior pets. Older dogs and cats with neglected teeth are time bombs ticking. Tartar build up can result in gingivitis, which can cause bacteria to get into the bloodstream. This can wreak havoc on your pet’s organs.

You can contribute to your senior pet’s health by keeping their teeth and gums in tip top shape. This can be done with regular at-home brushing and yearly professional cleanings by All Pets.


For more information on caring for your senior pet, or to schedule an appointment with All Pets Veterinary Medical Center, contact us with the link below!

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