Many dog people look at me with wide eyes when I recommend that their senior dog should have a regular health check for older dogs. The answer is usually: “But he’s got nothing, he’s just old.” G
This may appear to be the case at first glance. However, the fact is that the body changes with age. Older dogs have an altered metabolism and a weaker immune system. This makes them more susceptible to disease. At the same time, however, recovery is also very strenuous for the body and requires a lot of strength.
Health check for older dogs – Many diseases develop gradually
Many diseases show hardly noticeable symptoms at the beginning and the quadruped can also compensate them well and also cover them up. As a result, diseases are sometimes diagnosed late. In many cases, early detection of the disease increases the chances of recovery and shortens convalescence.
Therefore, I can only recommend that you have your senior dog checked regularly in order to detect illnesses at an early stage. In my opinion, this is really money well spent and not a pointless visit to the vet. Our dogs are unable to communicate with us and changes in everyday life are often noticed with a delay. Therefore, it is absolutely essential to present the older dog at least every 6 months to the geriatric check for dogs. And if it turns out that your dog is fit, all the better! Then you will always have a good feeling and certainty.
Chronic progression may eventually lead to reduced quality of life Health check old dog
It’s not just that the dog’s body is less able to cope with illness as it ages. Many diseases additionally take a chronic course. In some cases, this can be prevented. However, even if the chronic course of the disease cannot be prevented, the symptoms of the disease can be alleviated and pain can be relieved or even prevented.
Beautiful retirement and quality of life despite illness
As described at the beginning, the earlier a disease is detected, the better it can be treated. In many cases, the progression of the disease can be halted. In the best case, before symptoms occur that reduce the quality of life. This is especially the case with age-typical heart diseases and joint diseases such as osteoarthritis and back problems such as spondylosis.
Health check for older dogs – these parameters are checked during the geriatric check
The veterinarian will take a thorough history as a first step. This includes taking your dog’s medical history and also possible current symptoms. Your veterinarian will examine your dog thoroughly. This includes, for example, checking the eyes and hearing, as well as the body orifices. Also a look into the mouth of your dog should not be missing. Especially the teeth are often a construction site in senior dogs. The condition of the skin and coat are also checked.
Your dog will also be thoroughly palpated. This is how your veterinarian will try to feel for swelling, induration, and painful areas. Your dog’s joints will be checked for mobility and possible painful joint arthritis. The back is also palpated to detect possible back pain.
Also these examinations belong to it health check old dog
Furthermore, a laboratory examination of blood and urine is performed. Especially blood and urine tests give a good indication of your dog’s health. Here, diseases can be detected that may not yet show any symptoms externally. Kidney diseases only show the first clear symptoms, for example, when more than half of the kidney tissue is already damaged.
It is also recommended to have a cardiac ultrasound to detect possible heart problems early. If the general examination reveals abnormalities, further diagnostic examinations such as X-ray, ECG or ultrasound are sometimes necessary to make a diagnosis.
Health check for older dogs as prevention
You see, a regular check up at the vet for your older dog is not a useless frills. On the contrary. It gives you the opportunity for diseases in your dog to be detected and treated early. It gives your dog the chance to age with a high quality of life and without severe symptoms and pain.
You’ve always wondered what happens in your dog’s body as he gets older: Here’s what happens in your dog’s body as he ages.
Do you have an older dog and have you ever had a health check? What are your experiences with it?
PS: Are you interested in the topic of “older dogs” and would you like to actively do something to support your dog’s health?
I think that’s great! For me, it is a matter of course that I support and accompany my Tessa as best I can in her old age. I just want to have her by my side for as long as possible and give her as much quality of life as possible. I’m glad you feel the same way about your dog. If you are still at a loss as to how you can support your older dog, then take a look at my courses specifically for senior dogs. As this is a subject close to my heart, there are several online courses for interested dog people. Click here for the courses for senior dogs.
Not sure which course is right for you and your dog? Please get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can exchange ideas!
All the love, your Tina