It’s no secret that as we age, our bodies go through changes. The same is true for our pets – as they reach their senior years, they may start to experience some health issues that can make the changing seasons a challenge. Fortunately, there are ways you can help your senior pet handle the fall and winter months safely and comfortably. Here are four tips to get started.
#1: Give your senior pet a heated bed
When the winter wind seems to blow right through your bones, nothing feels better than curling up with a heated blanket. Give your senior pet the same luxury by placing a pet-friendly heating mat on their bed and putting the bed in an area of your home that is free from drafts. Check your pet’s heating pad regularly to ensure it remains in working order and does not create any hot spots.
#2: Bundle up your senior pet when heading outdoors
Many senior pets experience decreased muscle mass as they age, so they have less natural insulation to protect them from the elements. Additionally, older pets are less capable of maintaining their body temperature, so help them out with proper cold-weather gear. Fit your pet with a waterproof jacket or vest, and protect their paws from snow, ice, and ice-melting chemicals with booties.
#3: Create an easily accessible bathroom area for your senior pet
Decreased mobility makes it challenging for your senior pet to hurdle snow drifts to find the perfect spot to do their business, so design an easily accessible bathroom for them. Keep it clear of snow and ice, and consider installing a square of fake grass or using pee pads to encourage your pet to eliminate in that spot.
#4: Spend plenty of time interacting with your senior pet
Pets can experience the wintertime blues, too, especially if they are not getting enough exercise and mental stimulation. Make a point of playing new games or teaching your senior pet new tricks throughout the winter while you’re both stuck indoors to help prevent boredom and stave off cognitive dysfunction.
Although your senior pet may be entering their golden years, that doesn’t mean they don’t have plenty of life left. Schedule an appointment with our team to discuss ways to help your senior pet live their best life.