■ Diseases to watch out for when raising senior dogs

Unfortunately, dogs age faster than their owners and die sooner. As they dogs mature more quickly than humans, more care should be taken. Let's take a look at the diseases that you should be aware of when raising senior dogs.


Diseases and treatments for senior dogs

1. Cataract

As with humans, a cataract in dogs is a disease that results in the clouding of the lens inside the eye. As a treatment, the natural clouded lens is replaced with an intraocular lens during surgery.

According to a specialist, cataract surgery itself is not difficult, but general anesthesia for senior dogs comes with a burden of risk. Since dogs have an excellent sense of hearing and smell, they depend much less on their sense of sight than humans. Therefore, dogs with a cataract causing continual loss of vision do not feel much discomfort.


2. Joint disease

Joint disease is caused by worn-out cartilage acting as a cushion. It comes naturally to senior dogs, but as they are insensitive to pain, it is safe to say that symptoms are developed when they feel pain. You may also use health supplements to enhance their joints from the time they become senior dogs (age of 7, 8). Abnormal gait and wobbling in dogs are often caused by joint problems. If you see such signs, consult a veterinarian.


Symptoms to watch out for

□ Weight loss and thin body

□ Loss of energy

□ Loss of appetite

□ Fever

□ Irritation and pain in specific areas

□ Difficult to breathe


■ Health check to extend lifespan of dogs

1) Usual health care is important.

Dogs, like people, can have poor physical condition such as sickness or injury. However, since dogs are not able to talk like people, it is the owner's role to notice any unusual changes.

It is advisable to check the health status of dogs regularly. Coat, skin, eyes, ears and mouth require a special check for any abnormalities. If their eyes are dull and look weak, they may be in poor physical condition. Taking care of their health on a regular basis is recommended.


2) Early detection and treatment of diseases through a medical examination

There may be some diseases that may not be detected by owners. It is encouraged for puppies and adult dogs to get a medical examination once a year, and twice a year for senior dogs. The medical examination should include inspection, palpation, blood test, and electrocardiogram. In some cases, stool and urine test is also conducted. Owners can learn warning signs for each dog by getting advice from a veterinarian.


3. Diseases that require attention

Senior dogs are susceptible to illnesses. Diseases that are likely to affect senior dogs include:

□ Heart disease

□ Kidney disease

□ Tumor (cancer)

□ Gum disease

□ Cataract

□ Arthritis

□ Diabetes



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