From 7 years, a medium dog is considered old, 5 years for large dogs and 10 years for small dogs. Once senior, the dog’s rhythm changes and his metabolism slows down. Thus, the animal becomes less active, changing its nutritional needs. His diet must then be adjusted. For that, it is enough to respect these 9 advices to guarantee a long and beautiful end of life to his elderly dog.
1. Increase Protein Quality
As the older dog becomes more vulnerable, his protein requirement increases. However, his kidneys work less well and can no longer break down proteins properly. To bring him all energy he needs, so don’t enrich or reduce the amount of protein in his diet, but increase the quality. For example, the ideal food for the older dog consists of:
- Protein high-quality concentrates: 18 to 20%
- Small fat : 10 to 20%
- minerals essential to protect the joints
- Vitamin C and E to strengthen the immune system
- fibres to facilitate digestion
2. Choose a special diet
To ensure all of your senior dog’s nutritional needs are met, it is highly recommended that a “special seniors” food. indeed, the Food for animals the elderly take into account all the essential elements to keep them maintain a good physical condition.
Be careful though, the change of diet should be gradual more than ten days to avoid digestive disorders. To do this, it is enough to: mix the new senior diet with the old gradually increase the amount until it becomes the dog’s exclusive food.
3. Opt for small croquettes
As they get older, older dogs don’t always succeed chew their food correct. It is therefore advisable to opt for small chunks or easy to swallow food to make it easier for them. Likewise, it is possible tomoisten their kibble with lukewarm water.
4. Stimulate his appetite
It is not uncommon for older dogs to gradually lose their appetite. Indeed, old age causes them to sense of taste and smell. So don’t hesitate to find tips to encourage them to eat. For example, choose chunks with a high meat content helps stimulate their appetite.
5. Split Your Meals
An older dog must be fed more often than before to make the food easier to digest. So it is necessary to give him his daily ration in at least two meals (for example, morning and evening).
Keep in mind that the ration you should give your dog according to his age is always: indicated on the packaging industrial foods. When in doubt, do not hesitate to seek advice from a veterinarian.
6. Don’t give him treats
It may sound harsh, but it’s important never to give an older dog a treat. Since the latter is less active, it tends to: easier to store fat and thus weight gain. However, obesity in dogs is the cause of many health issues, such as diabetes, arthritis, or even heart disease.
If your dog is overweight, choose: so-called light foods specially made for older dogs.
7. Serve food at room temperature
The senior dog’s taste and smell are not what they used to be, it’s important to serve their meals at room temperature. indeed, the food too cold (e.g. from the refrigerator) do not exhale odor. This is now thesmell of food making a dog want to eat it.
Also think about save the croquettes of your dog in a hermetically sealed packaging to keep its taste and aroma.
8. Think about moisturizing it
the risk of dehydration in older dogs is more important because their bodies contain less water. So it is essential to ensure that your hairball has permanent access to a come with fresh water and clean. A wet food or a water cooler can be an additional means of encourage your dog to hydrate.
9. Adjust your scale
With the years, joint problems are felt in dogs. Especially can have large dogs hard to bend on their water and food bowls when they are on the ground. To make sure they can feed themselves properly, in a comfortable position, don’t hesitate to lift their bowls and place them at head height.
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