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Care For Older Dogs

As your dog gets older, you will witness noticeable differences in him or her physically. Their teeth will begin to wear down and will change color. Their eyes may begin to change color as well and start to appear gray or blue. The tone of their muscle will decrease and they won't be able to get around as fast or as easily as they once could. As your dog ages, they also will begin to experience various illnesses and chronic health problems.

Because dogs are often like part of the family, you will want to be able to care for them as best as you can and in a manner that the dog is still experiencing a good quality of life. You want to make sure that you are very vigilant and that you watch them closely. Study them and see if they begin to act differently, or if they seem to be in pain. It will be more important than ever to get checkup visits on a regular basis so that your vet can pinpoint any serious problems. You may want to do this as often as two times every year. These exams should include a blood workup.

If you are not sure of what warning signs to look for as your dog gets older, consider the following list.

-Your dog suddenly needs a lot more water than normal
-Your dog begins to throw up
-Your dog starts to gain or lose weight.
-Your dog suddenly has a change in their stools
-Your dog may have a harder time urinating
-Your dog’s stools suddenly become very loose or contain blood
-Your dog may begin going to the bathroom in the house
-Your dog may appear weak in the leg area or have a hard time walking, running or sitting down
-Your dog’s coat may begin to look dry, flake or lose fur
-Your dog may begin having a difficult time eating and digesting food.
-Your dog may exhibit behavior changes. They may be more cranky then usual.
-Your dog may begin coughing
-Your dog may begin to have trouble hearing
-Your dog suddenly becomes easily labored

Many dogs, as they get older, begin to suffer from diseases of the heart and kidneys. They will begin to have problems with their teeth and perhaps even their thyroid. If a dog is able to receive lots of good care, they can live for quite awhile even up to 15 years. However, this will differ based on their breed. Dogs that are neutered or spayed generally live longer. Some breeds of dogs such as Poodles, Airedale Terriers and Cocker Spaniels may live up to 20 years or more. Again, It depends on the breed, the individual dog and how well they are taken care of.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/pets-articles/care-for-older-dogs-907271.html

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