Older people feel the cold a lot more than the rest of us—and that goes for senior dogs also. Cold goes directly to their bones, and if the dog has arthritis, the winter makes it tough for him to move around or sleep on the floor. But winter doesn’t have to be difficult for your aging dog. Here are some simple things you can try out to keep your senior dog comfortable.
- Protecting your dog’s joints and bones
As your dog ages, his joints and bones may begin to weaken which can result in aching and stiffness – these issues can be aggravated by cold weather. One of the easiest means to shield your older dog’s joints and bones during the winter is to incorporate some supplementary glucosamine and chondroitin in his diet. These type of supplements is found in solid or powder form – there are also kibbles that are supplemented with these nutrients.
- Dress to impress
While your senior dog may have a fur coat to keep them warm, it may not be sufficient. Keep in mind that not all dogs are made for winter weather. If you find your senior dog shivering in their play time outside try getting your dog a sweater or extra layer of clothing to keep them warm during their time outdoors.
- Take them for a check-up
Given that your senior dog may be in more pain in the winter than other months, it’s wise to take them to your veterinarian for a check-up. It might even be the very first time your aged dog has acted like he is arthritic. Ensure your dog is taking the appropriate dosages of their drugs and consult your vet about including pain medications or upping their current ones if needed.
- More indoor time
Cold temperatures don’t usually support a senior dog, so you may need to reduce his outdoor time when the northern winds blow through. Ensure that outdoor time is strictly monitored and sessions are kept short. As always, once you know your dog perfectly you will be able to determine how long is too long, considering that each individual dog will surely have different cold tolerances.
- Take a walk under the sun
A sensitive senior dog might not like staying outside in the cold temperature. Ensure that you go for a walk in the daylight hours to give your senior dog as much warmth as you can. Not only will you be giving yourself and your aging dog vitamin D from the sun, but your senior pet will probably be more playful and get some more moments of exercising as well.
- Giving your senior dog a comfortable Place to Sleep
Always make sure that your senior dog has a comfy place to sleep. The floor gets extra cold and really hard during the winter, so think about giving your old pet a superb dog bed or a raised dog bed.
A plush dog bed help keep him off the hard floor and it will reflect most of his own body heat back to him – this is definitely true for types that have cushioned boosts around the borders. A heightened dog bed can likewise keep your senior dog off the cold floor and also offers additional support for his joints and bone. If your old pet is suffering from arthritis, you may also consider a memory foam dog bed for optimum joint and bone support.
- Stay away from heaters
Keep close eyes on your roaming dog. In the cold weather, most dogs often like to cuddle around something warm just like a fireplace or a space heater. Watch your aged dog to ensure they aren’t too close to a heat source.
- Start a winter diet
A dog’s diet may have to change with the different seasons just like people. If you regard your own dog as an outdoor dog, make sure you feed them accordingly. However, indoor dogs sleep more and exercise less. These dogs should be fed less than outdoor dogs. Don’t overfeed your dogs or feed them food with too many empty calories.
Cold and dry weather can have a number of effects on your pet’s skin. Help prevent flaky, dry skin by adding a coat and skin supplement to his meals. Fish oils and coconut are easy foods that will help keep your old pet skin and coat healthy. If you discover senior pet’s paws, ears or tail are cracking or dry, you may also apply coconut oil topically as required.
- Snow removal
Snow can be quite enjoyable but also unsafe for your senior dog. Snow stacked near fences provides your dog escape routes that even properly trained dogs usually can’t resist. If you clear snow in your garden, pile it away from fences to keep your pet from climbing over. Ice and snow often build up on rooftops but when the sun is out or as temperatures rise, this accumulation can easily slide and hurt your senior dog. If you can’t clear the snow from the roof top, always keep your dog away from the roof overhang to protect against injury.
Winter is tough on everyone, but it takes a specific toll on our senior dogs. Keep the cold away and your dog comfortable, so you can spend much more winters together.