Greece Animal Hospital Senior Pet Care
Greece Animal Hospital embraces a respectful, responsible approach to senior pet care. We understand that your aging dogs and cats have special needs. We provide the most progressive disease prevention and treatment protocols, combined with the sensitivity our senior patients deserve.
Quality Care for Loyal Seniors
Dogs and cats become seniors at varying ages depending upon size, breed, and type. Typically, medium-sized dogs enter the senior stage around age seven and cats around age eight.
Your veterinarian will tell you when the time comes to begin the senior protocol. Regular wellness exams and lab work help us to make that determination.
Regular dental exams and cleanings become especially important during this stage to prevent disease and enhance comfort. Other senior health recommendations may include medical testing, nutritional supplements, prescription diets, modification in exercise and lifestyle, and medication for chronic conditions.
Senior Exams & Lab Tests
In the senior pet, early identification of developing problems and diseases allows us to begin proper treatment early. We recommend twice a year examinations and annual lab tests for every senior dog and cat.
Possible tests for senior pets include:
- Complete blood count – Administered to diagnose possible infections, anemia, and leukemia
- Blood chemistry panel – Administered to monitor overall organ function
- Thyroid testing – Administered to evaluate thyroid function
- Urinalysis – Administered to evaluate kidney function and screen for infection and disease
We may also order X-ray or ultrasound tests, parasite screening, and more advanced blood and urine testing for specific conditions.
Blood Pressure in Senior Pets
Causes of hypertension include age, obesity, certain diseases, and some medications.
Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a serious veterinary health problem often seen in our seniors, especially those with acute and chronic illnesses. Causes of hypertension in dogs and cats include certain diseases, obesity, specific medications, and advanced age.
Blood pressure screening is routinely performed at wellness visits, when your pet is injured or ill, when your pet goes in for a surgical procedure, and at the senior exam.
We provide routine blood pressure screening for all our senior patients, especially those with underlying conditions such as kidney, heart, or endocrine disease and those requiring surgery.
Nutritional needs change as our pets age. Obesity puts any pet at risk for hypertension and heart disease. Decreased activity is often the result of discomfort or mobility issues in aging pets, especially those with arthritis.
We may recommend a prescription diet to address seniors’ nutritional needs, such as allergies, digestive issues, and medical conditions. Nutritional supplements can be combined with pharmaceutical treatments for chronic conditions. For example, we may offer an arthritis patient a prescription diet with glucosamine and chondroitin, fish oil supplements, and pain medication, combined with modifications for activity and lifestyle.
Comfort Throughout the Golden Years
Our respect and compassion for your senior pet lead us to focus on happiness and quality of life. We tailor care to each patient’s specific needs and lifestyle, maintaining health and comfort from the time they enter the senior stage until end of life.