No matter how much we love and care for them, our furry family members live shorter lives than us and progress through life’s stages more quickly, too. In general, cats and dogs are considered seniors once they reach age seven, and senior pets need specialized veterinary care. Even if your aging pet is doing well, we recommend senior pets receive a biannual checkup to ensure the early detection and treatment of age-related health conditions.
Medical Conditions That Commonly Affect Older Pets
Geriatric pets are at greater risk for developing the following conditions:
Heart Disease and blood pressure problems
Hormone and thyroid issues
Although aging pets are more susceptible to health conditions that can progress at an accelerated rate, they still instinctively hide their symptoms. This can make it difficult to spot illness while it’s still easy to treat. Keep an eye out for the following signs and symptoms of health problems that are common in older pets:
Decreased activity/energy and limited mobility
Increased or decreased appetite
Unexplained weight fluctuations
Loss of eyesight
Any changes, even subtle, in your pet’s behavior could indicate a health problem. Be sure to schedule an appointment if you notice anything different or abnormal.
What to Expect During a Senior Veterinary Appointment
To keep pets happy and healthy throughout their golden years, senior pet appointments focus on a variety of primary care approaches.
Examination and Health Screening
We’ll perform a complete physical examination and screen your pets for early signs of disease. This will likely include blood and urine testing that can help us diagnose a problem before a pet begins experiencing symptoms. Focused orthopedic evaluations and diagnostic imaging may be warranted as well.
Wellness and Preventive Care
We’ll help you promote your pet’s wellness and manage existing conditions with nutritional counseling, medication and/or supplement recommendations, and appropriate vaccinations.
If your older pet has a painful condition, we’ll partner with you to determine a customized, multimodal pain management plan.
We’ll help your pet stay active and playful by addressing any concerns affecting his or her mobility.
Maximum Care and Convenience for Aging Pets
Minimizing stress is an important part of addressing your pet’s health and happiness. With Signature Veterinary Services’ mobile clinic, pets enjoy the convenience and comfort of in- or at-home veterinary care. To learn more about geriatric veterinary care or to schedule an appointment for your pet, contact us today.