Playing is one of the best things you can do for your canine buddy. It’s also very beneficial for senior dogs! As Fido grows older, running and jumping will help keep him strong physically. Playing also provides mental stimulation, which is great for his mind. However, there are some things to keep in mind when playing with an older dog. A local Georgetown, IN vet discusses playing with senior dogs below.
Try Different Toys
As Fido ages, he may develop issues with his vision and/or hearing. Try using toys that light up or make noise.
Your furry friend won’t have as much energy or stamina as he used to. Fido may be tired out after just a few rounds of Fetch. Instead of spending long chunks of time playing with your canine pal, break doggy playtime into several short sessions. Even a few minutes of jumping and running will help!
Don’t Crowd Fido
Younger dogs often like to run and play with their buddies, which is super cute to watch. Older dogs, however, are much more fragile, and just can’t withstand roughhousing from younger pups. Play with Fido by himself or with another dog his age.
Watch The Weather
Older dogs are very sensitive to weather extremes. Don’t encourage Fido to run and play when it’s really hot out. Also, make sure your pooch always has water available.
Don’t Overdo It
Dogs love to try to please their humans. If Fido seems tired, don’t try to make him play. Just let your old buddy rest!
Check With Your Vet
As your furry buddy ages, his needs will change. Ask your vet for specific recommendations about the amount and type of play Fido needs. It’s worth noting that many dogs develop arthritis or hip dysplasia in their golden years. Don’t encourage your faithful pet to jump or to stand on his back legs. That will put a lot of stress on his hips, which can exacerbate these painful bone/joint conditions.
Keeping that cute tail going will be one of your biggest jobs as your furry pal ages. Make playtime extra fun for Fido by incorporating treats, praise, and belly rubs. Just don’t go overboard with the treats: you don’t want your pooch becoming obese!
Do you have questions about caring for your senior dog? Call us, your Georgetown, IN vet clinic, anytime!