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Senior Dog Care Tips

Like people, dogs are living longer. This is great news! We all treasure the companionship we share with our dogs. We hope to provide them with the longest, happiest lives possible.

Caring for your dog means more than treating problems as they arise. Preventive care is the most important component of healthcare in all of the life stages. At seven years most dogs are considered seniors. At this life stage changes in physical condition and behavior inevitably occur.

How Old is your Dog?

Dog's Age Dog's Weight in Pounds
< 5 0-20 21-50 51-90 > 90
5 36 38 40 42
6 40 42 45 49
7 44 47 50 56
8 48 51 55 64
9 52 56 61 71
10 56 60 66 78
11 60 65 72 86
12 64 69 77 93
13 68 74 82 101
14 72 78 88 108
15 76 83 93 115
16 80 87 99 123
17 84 92 104 -
18 88 96 109 -
Equivalent Human Age
Adult Senior Super Senior

What Signs Should I look for in my senior dog?

  • Change in water consumption (especially an increase)

  • Vomiting or diarrhea

  • Change in appetite

  • Change in weight

  • Lethargy or depression

  • Bad breath or difficulty eating

  • Change in urine production (especially an increase)

  • Lumps or bumps on the skin

  • Constipation

  • Decreased hearing or vision

  • Loss of housetraining

  • Stiffness or difficulty rising

  • Change in attitude (irritability or confusion)

What can my Veterinarian do?

Gresham Animal Hospital recommends a Senior Wellness Program for all dogs over seven years of age. The non-invasive tests in the program help us care for your senior dog in two ways. First, this program can identify possible health problems before they become life-threatening. Early testing and detection of medical problems allow for a more favorable outcome, or prognosis, and more cost-effective options. Second, these tests will provide a baseline with which your veterinarian can measure changes should your dog become ill in the future.

Doctor Exam

Detect early signs of disease such as periodontal disease, obesity, heart disease, cataracts, arthritis, and cancer.

  • Senior - Every 12 Months

  • Super Senior - Every 6 months

Blood Tests

Identify liver, kidney, pancreatic, and thyroid disease, anemia, and cancer.

  • Senior - Annually

  • Super Senior - Every 6 months

Urinalysis

Identify kidney disease and failure, infections, and diabetes.

  • Senior - Every 12 Months

  • Super Senior - Every 12 months

Blood Pressure Measurement

High blood pressure may lead to strokes, eye, or kidney disease.

  • Senior - Annually

  • Super Senior - Every 6 months

Tonometry

Screening for glaucoma.

  • Senior - Annually

  • Super Senior - Annually

Blood Pressure Measurement

Detects heart and lung disease, arrhythmias, enlarged organs, and cancer.

  • Senior - Annually

  • Super Senior - Annually

The Goal of Senior Care

The goal of senior care is simple. We want to help you maintain the highest quality of life for your dog and thereby enhance the bond that we all share. Together, we can make the senior years the most rewarding years for you and your dog to share with each other.