Exercising your senior dog
One thing we humans hear all the time is the mantra that keeping mobile is key to good physical and mental health, especially as we get older. This is no different for our pet pooches. However, just like us, as our beloved dogs begin to show signs of ageing, mobility starts to become more of a challenge. There could be a myriad of reasons for this - not just the obvious signs, such as weight gain, or stiff joints. Your canine companion's eyesight or hearing might not be quite as good as it was, or perhaps he suffers from digestion trouble. All kinds of minor ailments could result in a reluctance to run around.
Stick to a regular routine
Of course, it is hugely important to ensure your dog has regular health checks with your veterinarian and always take their advice if you are considering supplements for your dog's health. Most vets will tell you though, that in the vast majority of cases, a daily walk will bring substantial health benefits to your senior dog (and you!). Almost all dogs love walks and it is not just for the exercise. They love to sniff every pillar and post, leave their scent and feel the fresh air in their fur. This is still the case for senior dogs. However, if they are suffering from a reduction in vision and hearing, new environments might be a cause for anxiety. If this is the case for your pet, keep the routes familiar and regular.
Pay attention to your dog's behaviour
As well as listening to your vet, listen to your dog. If Doggy starts to lag after a hundred metres, maybe it's time to turn around and head home for a well-earned rest. You may find that while he finds it harder to cope with an hour-long walk, he is more than happy to trot along for two half-hour walks, or even four fifteen-minute walks! Try to understand what your dog seems to cope with best and incorporate it into a routine. As ever, seek advice from your veterinarian if you are increasing or decreasing exercise time for your senior pup.
Enjoy your walks!