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In my eyes my dogs will always be my little cute Murphy and Lucy pups. But knowing they're reaching their senior years, we need to tweak a few things so they stay healthy and comfortable.
Developing good healthy habits is the place to start! There are a number of things we can do to introduce healthy habits to our dogs, and its never to late to start taking these steps. They will need some extra help, so I wanted to share our top 5 healthy tips on caring for senior dogs in today's post!
Our nutritional needs change as we get older, so it only makes sense to change up our dogs diet as they enter their senior years. Can you believe at 7 years old dogs are considered seniors? We gradually switched our dogs to a dog food specifically formulated to fit their nutritional needs and eating habits. As they get older there sharpness in awareness and memory will slow down, thats why we love the nutrient dense Purina PRO PLAN BRIGHT MIND Chicken and Rice Formula Adult 7+ Dog Food. Packed with brain supporting nutrients like enhanced botanical oils, amino acid, fish oil, antioxidants, and key vitamins helping them think more like they did when they were younger. If you're not sure which dog food is right for your dog, always talk to your vet first. Our vet loves Purina One, and agreed that Pro Plan Bright Mind Formula was perfect fit for our pups.
I've noticed in the past few months both Murphy and Lucy have been getting more zzz's during the day. To keep them super comfortable I I've updated their bedding, added more cozy blankets, and created more comfy spots around our home for them. As our dogs age, their bodies become more stiff as they are at more risk for arthritis and hard surfaces can be painful for them. Lets just say with these few adjustments I can already tell they are resting more comfortably.
The older dogs get the less active they will be, so to avoid overfeeding, obesity, or other health problems from overfeeding, we have been monitoring there intake. Murphy for the most part has been pretty consist with his food intake, on the other hand as Lucy has aged, she tends to beg for food quite often. So we have been really working on portion control :) Making sure they are getting enough exercise but also not overdoing it is key. Being active also helps keep their body and mind functioning well, happy mind + healthy body = happy dog!
Regularly grooming is a great habit to get into! Our dogs have been catching up on more sleep these days which makes them more prone to matted hair, and longer nails. Older thinning skin can be more sensitive to irritation, so grooming regularly will help maintain healthier hair and skin. Also I have become more aware of their overall body condition by grooming them more often. This is another reason why we choose Purina PRO PLAN BRIGHT MIND 7+ Formula, as it's packed with key nutrients like Vitamin A and Linoleic acid, an omega 6 fatty acid, to promote healthy skin and coat.
Never underestimate the importance of companionship! As dogs get older they treasure the presence and touch of their loved ones. I've noticed with my pups they have been more cuddly then ever!! Even Lucy our medium size dog never cuddled when she was younger, but now LOVES to squeeze in close to us ( and we are not complaining at all :) ). With age they may be less likely to respond to our physical touch or voice but that doesn't mean they don't need the attention and comfort. Their mental health and emotional well being depends on it!! Another reason why we went with Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind Formula-- it's made to NOURISH our dogs MIND with key ingredients. When added to their daily diet it helps promote: memory, attention, and trainability. It's also made with enhanced botanical oils that can be used as an additional energy source for their brains, helps in alertness, and mental sharpness.
Instilling these healthy habits into your dogs daily routine will not only help with their overall health and happiness but help prepare for their elder years. It's all about less worrying and more time connecting with your dog as they enter their senior years of life.