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Why Choosing Food Carefully for Senior Dogs Is Important?

Aug 09, 2019 10:48 AM EDT
Why Choosing Food Carefully for Senior Dogs Is Important?

(Photo : Photo by Nancy Guth from Pexels)

A dog can be the life of a party, particularly if you live alone. However, like every other creature, age catches up with dogs, and can hold them back from being as active and jumpy as before. This should not, however, make you give up on your dog. Even at old age, you need to take care of your dog, if anything, more than ever before. Proper care includes grooming and healthy dietary habits.

When it comes to feeding a senior dog, so many things impact the results you expect from him. Age introduces some health conditions that can be taunting if the dog does not feed on healthy foods. In that case, if you are a pet owner of a senior dog, here are some guidelines on how to choose the food you feed him, with some insights on why proper dieting is important:

To promote activity

If you check, you realize that older dogs are not as active as young pups. Their bones and hormonal structures do not encourage a lot of running around and playing with toys. However, as a pet owner, you understand that physical activity is paramount for a healthy lifestyle for your dog. Therefore, to keep your senior dog from lazing around without physical exercise, choose the foods right. Consider proteins which will increase the energy levels as well as boost the activity of your canine friend. Besides, account for the fact that the older a dog gets, the more likely they are to lose muscle mass. With more protein in the diet, the senior dog can account for the lost mass, making him stronger and more energetic.

To aid digestibility

The older a dog gets, the lower the digestibility thereof. The guts of senior dogs go through a lot over the years, putting a strain on their eating habits. This means that if you are not careful with the foods you feed your senior dog, he might succumb to digestive problems like bowel syndrome, food allergy, colitis, or pancreatitis, among other digestion-related. Even though your dog's digestion may not directly deteriorate because of age, the susceptibility to the digestive problems should have you watching out what your dog eats. Make adjustment to consider food options that aid digestibility, including those rich in soluble fiber that aid in gastrointestinal support.

Weight loss struggles

Did you know that some senior dogs struggle with keeping on weight? The first thing you might notice is the decreased appetite. Even though it might not have a lot to do with age, watch out for the digestive problems that might cause dire calorie needs, or any other medical conditions. For weight loss struggles, work on diets that help with muscle mass gain. Consider foods with high proteins and high fats. While at it, go for foods with an appropriate calorie density to help with gaining some weight. However, make sure you consult your vet, in case there are some underlying medical conditions that need your attention, other than thinning of your senior dog.

To fight dental diseases

Dental diseases can attack a dog, without age being a factor. However, older dogs suffer from dental issues more than young pups. In that case, then it is possible that your senior dog has lost several teeth, which makes it very difficult to eat. Without proper consideration for this, your dog will experience low appetite, and soon enough, you will notice a lot of weight loss. Before it gets to that, look into changing to soft foods which do not require a lot of chewing. Most of the soft foods are either canned, raw, or fresh. If you are out for dog foods made specifically to attend to dental diseases, then check for ingredients like dog probiotics, citric acid, sodium hexametaphosphate, to mention a few.

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