As our pets age, they require specialized senior pet care to stay healthy. From pet vaccinations to pet holistic care, our Tampa animal hospital is dedicated to helping your dogs and cats age gracefully and stay active well into their golden years.
Tampa senior pet care for dogs and cats starts around 7 years of age. Since larger breed dogs age more quickly than smaller breeds, a larger breed dog may need pet senior care sooner. Cats typically need senior care around 7 years of age; with regular check-ups and proactive care, many indoor cats can live to be 15 to 17 years old.
While your pet’s age is important for determining senior care, so too is your pet’s behavior. Older pets have less responsive senses; for example, a senior dog or cat may not hear as well or move as quickly as he or she once did. As a vigilant pet owner, it is also important to pay attention to changes in your pet’s weight, eating habits and urination habits. Changes to these different behaviors may indicate an underlying health problem that requires treatment or pet surgery.
Our Tampa veterinarian recommends semi-annual wellness exams for senior pets. While external aging symptoms are readily visible, you cannot see are the internal changes occurring to your pet’s organs. By having a senior pet care exam every six months, our vet is able to closely monitor your pet’s health. During this exam we will conduct a full physical, test for parasites and also take diagnostic blood work. This proactive senior pet care helps our veterinarian more effectively identify potential health problems before external symptoms are present.
When your pet was a puppy or kitten, pet vaccinations were critical to preventing highly contagious illnesses. Now that your pet is older, it is just as critical as before to keep you pet up-to-date on vaccinations. Senior pets are vulnerable to highly contagious diseases, and their immune systems have a more difficult time fighting off illnesses. Older pets may not be able to tolerate the vigorous treatments necessary for these illnesses. By keeping your pet up to date on vaccinations, you can help reduce the risk for health problems.
Older pets are more likely to suffer from osteoarthritis and reduce mobility. If your pet is in pain because of advancing arthritis, early intervention with pet holistic care may be able to help. In more severe cases, pet surgery may be necessary. Our veterinarian works closely with pet owners to create a treatment program that best matches their pets’ needs.
If you have an older dog or cat, contact Harbourside Animal Hospital today to learn more about our Tampa senior pet care services.