Did you know dogs are capable of living between 10 to 13 years? The same goes for a cat’s lifespan, which is approximately 15 years.
Older pets are wonderful companions who deserve to have a loving home. We’re here to provide you with the best advice on adopting an elderly pet.
Keep reading to learn how you and your family can become better prepared to welcome an older pet into your home!
1. Register With Your Local Vet
It is important to register with your local vet when adopting an older pet. This will help to establish a good relationship between the pet and the vet, ensuring that the animal receives regular check-ups and preventative care.
A vet not only provides medical care but can offer advice concerning proper nutrition, age-appropriate living conditions, and behavior strategies for the older pet. Furthermore, if an emergency arises, you will already have an established relationship with a vet, which can provide tremendous peace of mind.
2. Look Into the Pet History
When adopting older pets, it is important to look into the history of the animal. For example, research the pet’s original owner, the home they lived in, and any health issues or injuries they may have experienced.
Knowing the pet’s history can be beneficial in the long run as it gives you a better understanding of their needs and how to provide them with the best care possible. Taking the time to look into the past of your pet can help ensure their future is a bright and happy one.
3. Preparing Your Home
When adopting an older pet, it is important to make sure your home is pet-ready. Start by pet-proofing the house by securing any hazardous items or areas that the pet could potentially get into.
Make sure to stock up on the necessary supplies such as food, toys, treats, and a properly-sized crate or bed. Also, consider providing your pet with a comfortable spot to relax where they can enjoy the sun or just take a nap.
Ensure your pet is getting plenty of exercise with regular walks or playtime. If you have multiple animals, introduce them to each other gradually in a safe, secure environment, and always keep a close watch. By doing all these things and being patient with your pet, you can help it adjust to the new home and start to build a loving bond together.
4. Get Pet Insurance
Pet insurance can provide peace of mind in case of a pet emergency or if the pet needs medical attention for something unforeseen. Older pets can often require additional medical attention, and pet insurance can help cover these extra costs.
It’s also recommended to check your local laws and ensure that you can bring an older pet into your home and abide by local regulations.
5. Choose the Right Food
Older pets with digestive issues often need food that is easy to digest and contains essential vitamins and minerals. Grain-free or limited-ingredient diets are typically ideal for older pets with sensitive stomachs.
Be mindful of switching your pet’s food suddenly, as this can cause digestive issues or even an upset stomach. When switching foods, do so gradually over a period of about seven days, mixing increasingly larger proportions of the new food in with the old food each day.
During this transition period, keep a close eye on your pet’s eating habits and look for changes in their energy levels. If your pet’s appetite drops or they seem lethargic, contact your vet as soon as possible. Proper nutrition is the key to a healthy life, for senior pets especially.
6. Finding the Perfect Food Supplements
Finding the perfect food supplements for dogs and cats can be a challenge, but the effort is worth it! First, ask your veterinarian for recommendations about the best dietary supplement for the pet.
Consider the age, weight, activity level, and health issues of the pet when deciding which supplement to choose. Look for supplements with natural ingredients that are specifically designed for older pets, and make sure to read the label carefully.
No matter the kind of supplement you choose, make sure to give it as instructed. Monitor the pet’s overall health and eating habits to ensure that the diet is balanced and the supplement is working.
Finally, while it may be easy to fall into a monthly routine, give your pet routine checkups to ensure that the supplement is keeping up with the pet’s changing needs.
7. Research a Reputable Rescue or Shelter
One of the top tips for adopting older pets is to make sure you research a reputable rescue or shelter. There are many organizations out there, and not all of them are as reputable or as committed to providing the best possible home and care for animals.
Researching an organization can help ensure that the pet you’re adopting is in good health, has received all of the necessary vet care, and is going to a good home where it will remain for life. Doing your due diligence can help you choose the right older pet for you to adopt and provide a forever home.
8. Doing Regular Exercise
When adopting an older pet, one of the best tips is to ensure it gets plenty of exercise. Regular exercise helps keep an older pet healthy and could help stave off potential health concerns as your pet ages.
Exercise can be as simple as playing with toys at home or more structured, such as going for walks, hikes, or playtime at the dog park. Exercise is also a great time to bond with your pet by giving it plenty of attention, treats, and runs.
If your pet appears to tire more easily, be sure to gradually increase exercise lengths, and don’t be afraid to adjust the intensity level of the activity. Overall, regular exercise will help your pet stay healthy and happy in its golden years.
Start Adopting Older Pets Today
Adopting older pets is a wonderful way to give a second chance to a pet in need. With proper care, attention, and patience, your older pet will provide you with years of love and companionship.
So, what are you waiting for? Consider looking into adopting an older pet and see how much joy it can bring to both of your lives!
Check out our other blog posts for more tips.