How to Meet the Nutritional Needs of a Senior Dog

By the time they reach eight years of age, most [i4w_db__DogBreed]s  are considered to be senior dogs. At this point in their lives, their bodies will start to really slow down and will undergo significant changes. They may not move as quickly, will often sleep more, and will have new nutritional requirements. When you get to this point, then, you should consider possibly changing [i4w_ud_DogName]’s diet.

As you may already be aware, after reading [i4w_db__DogBreed]s Made Easy, [i4w_db__DogBreed]s  have different nutritional needs throughout the various stages of their lives. The nutrients a puppy requires compared to that of an adult or senior are incredibly different. Therefore, you must make sure you are feeding your senior [i4w_db__DogBreed] the appropriate nutrition to help it maintain optimum health and wellbeing. But where do you start?

Well, unless your dog is already on a special diet to treat an existing health condition, you will find that most quality dog food manufacturers actually sell mixes specifically for senior dogs and these are already carefully balanced to satisfy your [i4w_db__DogBreed]’s nutritional requirements in later years. However, if you really aren’t sure which brand is best and want more advice on which nutrients should be included in [i4w_ud_DogName]’s diet, consult your veterinarian, as he or she will be able to make some recommendations and assist you in making the right food choice specific for your dog.

Now, you might be wondering, what makes a senior dog food formula different from puppy and adult varieties? One of the primary differences is a decrease in calories. Due to the fact that senior [i4w_db__DogBreed]s are not as active as they were when they were younger, they don’t need as many calories as they once did to support an active lifestyle. Senior formulas also tend to contain less protein, for the same reason. Feeding kibble that has lower calories helps to lower your dog’s risk of becoming obese in old age – and obesity in itself can lead to many health problems. Senior dog food formulas typically also contain supplements such as glucosamine to help stave off uncomfortable joint pain.

You should also take greater care not to overfeed your dog. The less active your [i4w_db__DogBreed], the less food energy it requires. Many dog food brands recommend suggested servings but it really depends on how active [i4w_ud_DogName] is so, if you are unsure what amount is sufficient, speak to your vet. You should also think more carefully about the amount of treats you provide your senior [i4w_db__DogBreed]. Most treats are very high in calories and should only be given on occasion. Try to find healthy treat options that offer nutritional benefits.

Finally, should you notice that your senior dog is struggling to eat food or is reluctant to eat, this is commonly due to dental problems, which could be making their gums and teeth sore. Have your dog’s mouth checked by the vet, and try adding water to dry food to make it softer and more manageable for you [i4w_db__DogBreed] to eat.

Filed Under: Dog Health CareEmail Articles


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