They say the older they get, the sweeter they become. We agree!
There’s nothing quite like the love of a senior dog. Here’s 10 ways to make sure they feel our love in return.
#1 Frequent, Short Walks
Just because your dog is aging doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy a good walk. And while they likely can’t cover the distance they did years ago, they always appreciate time by your side, even if its just a stroll down the block.
If your dog has trouble getting around, consider pulling them in a padded wagon. They might not be as mobile, but they still enjoy the smells and visual they get on a good walk. Or you can come up with a creative solution like the video below ?
#2 Treat Them to Bone Broth
Bone broth is fast becoming a favorite for older dog parents. Not only is this super-soup packed full of joint enhancing ingredients such as collagen and glucosamine, it also contains a whole food source of vitamins and minerals. Many pet parents find that pouring a bit of bone broth over their dog’s existing food boosts their dog’s appetite. If you don’t have hours to make your own from scratch, this powdered bone broth might be helpful for you.
#3 Teach an Old Dog New Tricks
Contrary to popular belief, old dogs can learn new tricks. In fact, its vital for their cognitive health! Older dogs actually have some advantages – attention span being one – that might make them easier to train in some ways. However, there are a few things to think about when you are working with an older dog. Check out our piece on 10 Training Tips for Senior Dogs.
#4 Gift Them an Orthopedic Bed
When was the last time you replaced that stinky old dog bed? Spoil your dog with a new orthopedic bed that will support his joints while he sleeps, alieving any pain caused by arthritis or past injuries. Look for a bed that is also antibacterial and antifungal for all-around care.
#5 Give Your Senior Dog a Canine Massage
Canine massage is beneficial for so many reasons – no matter if your dog is a couch potato or the next agility master. And while it is a skill that requires schooling to do masterfully, there are a few techniques that dog owners can learn at home to benefit their dog’s health and well-being. Check out this article for a few tips.
#6 Give Them Easy Access to YOU
Our seniors want to be near us, but we often forget that their mobility can restrict this desire. Many unique products exist that help dogs get up on beds, couches, and vehicles so they can stay by our side.
#7 Dental Treats
By the time a dog is a senior, they have likely built up some level of tartar and plaque, which can cause of host of health issues. While there’s no substitute for brushing and cleanings with your vet, dental chews given regularly can make a difference. Not to mention most dogs find them to be a tasty treat.
#8 Allow Them to Smell New Smells
Humans are very visual and when we’re bored we often turn on the TV or look to our smartphones for entertainment. A dog’s brain, on the other hand, is more far more scent oriented. Allow your dog to experience new smells such as flowers, plants, new trails or new people.
#9 Give Them a Joint Chew (Disguised as a Treat)
Once a dog reaches 7 or 8, most pet parents have begun to give a glucosamine supplement, especially for larger breed dogs. However, your senior doesn’t need to know its good for them! There’s many great tasting joint soft chews on the market, including these natural bacon flavored chews.
#10 Give Them a Cognitive Toy
While we often think of toys as frivolous, they are anything but for your dog’s brain and physical health. Like humans, dogs get bored of the same things over and over, so rotating your dog’s toys or purchasing them a new one monthly helps keep things fresh. For seniors, cognitively oriented products such as treat dispensing toys are especially beneficial. (tip: here’s some more cool toys your pup will love, and each one bought provides a toy for a shelter dog too!)