Unfortunately, dogs age much faster than humans. Depending on the breed and size of your dog, being classified as a senior can be as young as 6 or 7 years old. Senior pets and those with chronic illnesses, such as arthritis, diabetes, and kidney disease, often require more frequent check ups. During your pet’s senior exam, a thorough physical exam including palpation of joints, evaluation of sight and hearing can be performed, as well as looking for any skin masses. We often recommend more frequent blood work to monitor chronic diseases and medications which your pet may be on. Make sure to bring a list of all medications as well as supplements that your dog is receiving.
Closely monitoring your senior pet’s activity, appetite, mobility and thirst can give us clues to changes, which when managed early on can often lead to a better quality of life for our aging companion.