Guest Post by Kristin Louis
As animals age, they become more prone to health issues, including arthritis, vision loss, hearing loss, and senility. They may struggle with mobility issues such as climbing stairs, passing through doorways, or moving through the darkness. If your pet is getting older and starting to slow down, there are some simple lifestyle changes you can make to help ease the transition.
Prepare for Care Costs
According to leading veterinarians, senior pets need check-ups more often than their younger counterparts. You should expect to visit at least twice a year for routine care, and the vet should also check for signs of illness based on species, breed, age, and body composition.
Vet care becomes increasingly expensive as your pet ages, so it’s essential to budget for pet care costs as early in life as possible. However, your savings can quickly eat into chronic illness or emergency care needs. Therefore, you should consider adding a pet policy to your insurance coverage. However, finding good pet insurance can be tricky, so evaluate policy packages by examining coverage levels, premiums, deductibles, and maximum pet age. Many pet insurance companies can choose from, so research sample quotes and customer reviews before buying a policy.
Meet Nutrition Needs
Just like humans, animals have specialized nutrition needs as they age. Older pets may not require as much food as their metabolism and activity levels slow down. Your vet can guide you in determining the right formula and measurement for your senior pet.
‘Baby-Proof’ Your Home
Especially if your senior pet has trouble with mobility or blindness, they may not navigate your home as well anymore. You can make simple adjustments to help relieve your pet’s physical or mental stress. A few examples include:
- Laying non-slip rugs to prevent slipping and sliding on hard floors
- Offering heated or orthopedic beds to keep pets warm and relieve joint pain
- Setting up steps or ramps to help older pets climb onto furniture
- Installing night lights so pets can find their way in the dark
- Declutter your home and remove obstacles that impact your pet’s movements
Just as you would make changes to your home for a mobile toddler or new puppy, you can revamp your rooms for the safety, health, and comfort of your aging animals.
Fortify Your Yard
As your pet ages, they may become more vulnerable outside your home. You can keep your pet from wandering and prevent predators from entering your yard by upgrading your landscaping or installing a new fence. Be mindful of any toxic plants and weeds your pet may consume on your property. Also, monitor your senior pet for heat sensitivity during the day. Provide plenty of shade plus a water system, especially if your furry companion must spend the peak sunlight hours outdoors.
If you make a home or outdoor improvements for the benefit of your pets, be sure to save your receipts and keep records of your before and after photos for inspectors, real estate agents, and potential buyers. Should you decide to sell your home, any work you have done may increase the value of your property.
Your pet deserves the best life you can give. Thanks to these strategies, modern veterinary medicine, and technological advancements, you have every chance to keep your best friend with you for as long as possible.
Our guest blogger, Kristin Louis, is a writer who writes on parenting children and pets. Please visit her site Parenting with Kris at this web link:
Photo Credit: Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash