Free 2-3 Working Day Standard Delivery
Order before 12pm for same day despatch
Log in Log inRegister

Forgotten your password?


Sorry, your email or password is incorrect.


Caring for an older dog

by Lauren Samet

The length of a dog's lifespan depends on the breed, and ranges from an average of five and a half years for a dogue de Bordeaux to fourteen years for a miniature poodle. It is generally considered that larger breeds age faster than smaller ones, but for the majority of breeds middle-age begins after the age of seven years. As a dog ages, their needs change, but as long as the owner makes appropriate adjustments to the usual routines of canine care, there is no reason why man's best friend cannot live a long and happy life.

Changes to expect as your dog ages

Most dogs will begin to show signs of slowing down as they reach middle age. This means that their requirement for energy from food will decrease, and helps explain why senior dogs have a greater tendency to gain excess weight. The muscles and bones show sign of losing strength, and the joints might become stiffer, resulting in less enthusiasm for exercise. There will also be noticeable changes to the condition of the skin, with a loss of elasticity, and the coat might lose its gloss and begin to turn grey or white.

Feeding practices

Canine nutritional requirements change with age, and senior dogs usually benefit from a specially designed diet. The age at which a pet should move onto a diet that has been formulated for senior dogs depends on the breed. A vet or qualified animal nutritionist will be able to provide advice on how best to proceed with regards to modifying your dog's diet.


Older dogs may start to need to go to the toilet more often, which will mean providing more regular access to a suitable place for relieving themselves. Some dogs may become incontinent, and female dogs are especially susceptible. There are a variety of available treatment options, and you should consult a vet if your dog is starting to leave wet patches.

Keeping active

Even if older dogs don't appear to have as much energy as when they were young, they still benefit from physical activity and mental stimulation. Regular exercise, such as walking, has a role in the management of a dog's weight, and toys and suitable problem solving tasks can help their brains stay sharp.


A senior dog's joints may start to show signs of wear and tear, and they might appear to be stiff from time to time, especially in the morning. Regular exercise at a light to moderate intensity and the maintenance of a healthy bodyweight can help support the condition of an older dog's joints. Nutritional supplements, such as glucosamine, might also be useful in helping to promote mobility, and a vet will be able to give advice if you are unsure about the suitability of these products. You should also consult a vet if the dog appears to be in any kind of pain.

General maintenance

Like people, dogs may start to experience deterioration in their sight and hearing as they enter their senior years. Care should be taken in the home to avoid making loud noises that might startle them, and a vet should be consulted if a dog repeatedly fails to respond when called. Also, as they are likely to be taking less exercise, their nails might appear to grow more quickly than they used to, and regular trips to the vet for trim might be warranted.


Call Us: 0800 0773 861 Call Us
top of page

© SimplySupplements™ 2019   All rights reserved.

Show Bottom Menu
More +