In order to help provide your companion animal with a good quality of life as they continue to age, your senior pet will benefit from ongoing routine preventive veterinary care as they age.
By providing your pet with comprehensive veterinary care throughout their lives with a little extra care later in life we can help ensure that your pet stays happy and healthy, so it's important that they attend regularly scheduled wellness exams, even if you don't have any concerns.
Our veterinarians are here to help geriatric pets in Millbrook achieve optimal health by identifying and treating emerging health issues early, and treating issues as they arise before they can cause more serious complications.
Our companions are now able to live longer and healthier than ever before thanks to the advances in medicine, nutrition and diagnostic and treatment options.
While having our pets live longer is a wonderful thing, pet owners and veterinarians now face the challenge of managing more age-related conditions in pets than they did in the past.
Senior pets most commonly experience the following conditions:
When your dog begins to age they may begin to experience various joint discomfort resulting in pain and discomfort. Some of the most common joint and bone disorders in geriatric pets that our veterinarians see include arthritis, hip dysplasia, osteochondrosis, reduction in spinal flexibility, and growth plate disorders.
It is crucial for your dog to have ongoing veterinary care to prevent potential conditions from going untreated and causing serious complications. Treatment for joint and bone issues in senior dogs ranges from simply reducing levels of exercise, to the use of analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs, to surgery to remove diseased tissue, stabilize joints or reduce pain.
While generally osteoarthritis is a condition most commonly associated with older dogs, this painful condition may also affect your senior cat's joints.
If your senior cat experiences symptoms of osteoarthritis, it may be less noticeable than when observed in dogs.
Do you suspect that your cat is showing signs of arthritis? Fill out our checklist to learn more.
It has been reported that approximately 50% of all pets die from various cancers. This makes routine checkups very important in pets as they age.
Bringing your geriatric pet in for routine checkups even when they seem healthy allows your veterinarian to examine them for early signs of cancer and other diseases which respond better to treatment when diagnosed as early as possible.
Heart diseases can not only affect us humans but can also occur in our beloved companions.
Senior dogs commonly suffer from congestive heart failure, which occurs when the heart isn't pumping blood efficiently, causing fluid to back up in the heart, lungs, and chest cavity.
Heart disease itself may be more commonly seen in dogs but Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) is relatively common in senior cats. This condition causes the walls of a cat’s heart to thicken, decreasing the heart’s ability to function efficiently.
Degeneration in the eyes and ears can lead to varying degrees of deafness and blindness in older pets, although this is more common in dogs than in cats.
One of the main issues in diagnosing these conditions is that they may come on slowly, allowing geriatric pets to adjust their behaviour and making it more difficult for pet owners to be aware of the signs they are exhibiting.
In senior cats, liver disease is common and may be the result of high blood pressure or hyperthyroidism. Symptoms of liver disease in cats include loss of appetite, jaundice, drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, and increased thirst.
Liver disease in dogs can cause several serious symptoms including seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, jaundice, abdominal fluid buildup, and weight loss.
If you notice any of the above symptoms in your geriatric dog or cat then you should bring them in for veterinary care as soon as possible.
Diabetes in dogs and cats can occur at any age, however, most dogs are diagnosed at approximately 7-10 years of age and the majority of cats diagnosed with diabetes are over 6 years of age.
Symptoms of diabetes in dogs and cats include excessive thirst, increased appetite accompanied by weight loss, cloudy eyes, and chronic or recurring infections.
Cats and dogs suffering from obesity are at an increased risk of developing diabetes.
As pets age, their kidneys tend to lose their function. In some cases, kidney disease can be caused by medications used to treat other common conditions seen in geriatric pets.
Unfortunately, kidney disease is a condition that has no known cure, but the symptoms can be managed, allowing your pet to continue to live a full life.
Urinary tract conditions and incontinence issues are common conditions among the senior pets that our Millbrook vets often see. Elderly pets can be prone to accidents as the muscles controlling the bladder weaken, but it's important to note that incontinence could be a sign of a bigger health issue such as a urinary tract infection or dementia.
If your geriatric pet begins to show any signs of urinary concerns then you should bring them in for an examination as soon as possible.
During your senior pet's routine visit our vets will complete a comprehensive examination, as well as discuss and perform any diagnostic tests that may be required to receive additional insight about their overall health.
Depending on what the initial diagnostics show, our vets will recommend a treatment plan that can potentially include medications, activities and dietary changes that may help improve your senior pet's health, well-being and comfort.
Preventive care is essential to helping your senior pet live a healthy, happy and fulfilled life. It also allows our veterinarians the opportunity to observe and diagnose potential diseases and disorders as early as possible.
Early detection of disease will help preserve your pet's physical health and catch emerging health issues before they develop into long-term problems.
With regular physical examinations, your senior pet will be able to live comfortably, long into their golden years.
Millbrook Valley Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Millbrook companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.