19 November 2020
Nothing compares to the love for an older dog.
As our dogs get older, the incredible bond that we have built over the years comes into its own. And while they may not race around as they used to, or be quite so fixated on their ball games with you, there’s still a lot that you can do together to enhance their retirement.
Like older people, life can become much quieter for an older dog. They will likely need less exercise as they did as youngsters and they may be generally less active. Exercise and activity is still really important though – however old your dog is – so don’t leave them sleeping on the sofa all day, simply adjust what you to to what works for them.
The gradual change in their requirements and what makes them happy will see a greater emphasis placed on their relationship with you and the importance of your bond. You will likely have developed this relationship over many years – and this is where all of that time together means the most – you know each other so well. Always remember just how much you mean to your dog.
Observe your dog
By spending more time together, you should have more opportunity to notice any small changes in your dog’s behaviour which may indicate something is wrong. Are they struggling to jump onto the sofa like normal? Is getting up difficult? Do they seem stiff when they walk?
While it’s common for owners to think these are just due to old age, they need investigating as there will always be a reason for change. For example, arthritis is extremely common in older dogs, and treatments are so effective, your dog doesn’t need to feel pain from it and can enjoy a much happier older age if only it is diagnosed.
Always check any changes in your older dog with your vet.
Grooming and massage
Contact with your dog is hugely important throughout their life, and this doesn’t change as they age. Physical and social contact can produce additional neurotransmitters in a dog’s brain, making them feel happy and content.
Do always bear in mind that if your older dog has compromised sight or hearing, that an unexpected touch can startle them. Always make sure they know that you are there before you touch them, and that you focus on the areas that you know they enjoy contact.
Gentle, daily grooming is great for bonding between dog and owner, and many will enjoy a gentle massage. Be guided by your dog and what you know makes them happy! Older dogs that aren’t as active as they used to be may find that spending this time with you becomes their favourite part of the day.
This October and November, there is no upper age limit applied to new lifetime pet insurance policies, so dogs of ANY age can enjoy life with the protection of lifetime insurance behind them.
Get your dog’s quote until 30 November 2020, and protect your best friend in time for winter.