The Best Ways You Can Care For Your Aging Dog

Natural dry dog food brands and products we’ve featured target specific dietary needs of senior dogs. A balanced diet with the best supplements for your ageing dog is essential.

Whether it’s a grain free diet, weight control, joint issues or super-food boosts to strengthen immune and cognitive health, premium dog food brands specialise in these issues.

We echo the opinion of the RSPCA that many older dogs have chronic health issues that can be affected or improved by the diet you feed them and recommend giving your senior dog frequent smaller meals.

It might seem obvious that the needs of a puppy and a senior dog are very different – but it’s not always second nature to know exactly what your dog needs.

Every dog is different

The right food for your dog should be assessed by looking at their individual health or dietary needs, breed, age and size.

Before we get into the details, it’s important to remember that different breeds have different needs. But also that what may work for one dog might not be the best practice for another – regardless of whether they’re the same breed or not.

The best dog food for older dogs

As your dog ages, his metabolism will slow and the amount of daily activity decreases. Naturally this combination can make dogs more susceptible to weight gain. So, as their routine changes, so should their diet.

What types of food are best for senior dogs?

A variety of foods, (by that we mean dry, wet and fresh), is considered the optimal diet for a dog.

What’s the best senior dog food brands?

Purina, Nulo, Canidae, Orijen, these brands offer special ranges to suit different requirements for older dogs. The choices are generally based on size of dog, breed and nutrient level.

Check out Nulo if you’re after the best diet dog food for older dogs and Orijen for grain-free dog treats. This is a list of some of the highly-rated senior dog food lines with ingredients that target specific needs.

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Should I consider supplements for my aging dog?

The best way for your dog to get nutrients is through their diet, although sometimes this isn’t enough. If you’ve established a nutritionally balanced diet for your dog but are noticing signs of ageing or less movement it could be time to consider supplements.

What are the best supplements for older dogs?

  1. Glucosamine and Chondroitin

Supplements to help with arthritis and joint pain. These compounds are naturally occurring in the body and support healthy cartilage. To get maximum pain relief and anti-inflammatory results it’s recommended that glucosamine and chondroitin are taken alongside essential fatty acids. Both glucosamine and chondroitin can be found in senior dog foods blends, such as Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind and Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Senior Dog Food. Look for these ingredients if you’re after the best hip supplements for dogs.

  1. Omega 3 and 6 – Essential Fatty Acids

The essential fatty acids, Omega 3 and 6, have anti-inflammatory benefits and help preserve your dog’s skin and coat. It’s believed that they assist brain functioning and awareness while also boosting their immune system. Senior dog food ranges which are high in Omega 3 include Purina Supercoat Senior and Canidae Grain-Free Pure Senior Formula.

  1. Prebiotics + Probiotics

These gems can aid your dog’s digestion and relieve stomach issues. Another key benefit of prebiotics and probiotics is that they restore the gut with good bacteria that can be lacking in older dogs due to age or medication. The use of prebiotics and probiotics can also help protect your dog against illness and infection.

Is it dangerous to give my dog supplements?

   Be aware that the pet supplement market lacks regulation and there isn’t widespread testing for supplements. Monitor your dog, feed a balanced diet and speak with your vet about whether your dog is receiving sufficient vitamins and supplements. 

There’s a wide range of vitamin and supplements on the market. Unfortunately many have questionable reviews and intentions. It’s best to consult your vet before trying vitamins or supplements for your senior dog.

At what age is my dog considered senior?

To make matters confusing there’s no set age for when your dog is considered senior. The average age is around 7 years but in reality the age at which your dog is considered senior depends on a number of factors. Breed, health and lifestyle are the variables.

Breed

Different breeds age at different speeds. The general rule of thumb is that larger dog breeds age more rapidly than smaller dog breeds. To check the specific age timeline for your dog it’s important to consult your vet as other factors are taken into consideration when judging whether a dog is considered senior or not.

Health

Your dog’s medical history needs to be considered. Like humans, genetics and environment can play a big role in a dog’s ageing process. Taking into consideration their health status and history important.

Lifestyle

Another important factor for determining the seniority of your dog. You can do this by evaluating aspects of their lifestyle such as the amount of exercise/activity, diet, nutrition and nature.

Senior dogs need different types of care, diet and nutrients but the advice is not one size fits all. Every breed and individual dog is different. Monitor your dog’s progress and alter their diet and lifestyle accordingly as they age.

We recommend you consult your vet before making any changes and if you have any concerns about your dog’s routine or specific needs.

Providing the best supplements and nourishing with the best dog food to suit a senior dog or his stage of life helps deal with symptoms of aging and delay the onset of health problems. These are the positive things we can do for our dogs.

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