Is your canine pal a four-legged retiree? If so, you may need to make some adjustments to Fido’s workout routine. Your pet won’t be as agile or strong as he once was, so he’ll need a less strenuous fitness regimen than he used to. A Covington, GA vet offers some tips on exercising a senior dog below.
Walking is pretty much the standard exercise for Man’s Best Friend. Pay attention to Fido, and monitor his energy levels. For some senior dogs, a short walk is plenty.
Swimming can also be wonderful for older dogs. It’s very easy on their bones and joints, because the water will support their weight. That makes it a top choice for older pooches that need to lose weight, as well as those that need physical rehabilitation. Of course, the main thing to consider here is whether or not Fido likes the water. If he doesn’t, you shouldn’t force him. If he does, let him enjoy himself, weather permitting. Just choose safe, shallow spots, and never leave him unattended.
One thing you’ll need to be aware of is the fact that Fido will tire out more quickly than he once did. Keep a close eye on him, and watch for signs that he is getting tired. Panting is often the first thing you’ll see. You may also notice him lagging behind, or even trying to turn for home. Head back in when your pooch gets tired.
Fido may slow down as he ages, but he will still be a puppy at heart. Go ahead and play with your pooch! Just don’t encourage him to jump or stand on his back legs very much. Also, play on safe, soft surfaces, like a grassy lawn or a carpeted area. That way, you don’t have to worry about your furry pal hurting himself if he falls. Finally, be sure to choose toys made just for older dogs. These are often easier on Fido’s mouth than other toys.
Enjoy this time with your four-legged friend. You may find that those relaxing, end-of-the-day strolls are a great way for you to unwind and just spend some quality time with your canine buddy. Have we mentioned that senior dogs are adorable?
Please contact us if ever we can be of assistance. As your local Covington, GA veterinary clinic, we’re here to help!