How can you tell if your aging pet is sick – or just getting old? Here are some tips from Prevention magazine:
- To start, say you notice that your pet has bad breath. Your dog may simply need his teeth cleaned. As dogs get older, their teeth can build up severe amounts of plaque, but it could also be a sign of dental disease. Just like in humans, oral bacteria from a infected mouth can spread to the bloodstream and the heart, and that can lead to a life-threatening infection. Your course of action? Of course, schedule a dental cleaning right away. Your vet may also prescribe antibiotics to knock out the infection.
- So what if you notice weird lumps and bumps on your aging dog’s body? Vets call those lumps “old dog warts,” and most of the time they’re benign and nothing to worry about. However, sometimes, they can be cancerous – so have your vet check them out. They can usually tell what needs a biopsy and what’s harmless. However – CATS don’t get old age warts. So if you notice a weird lump or bump on Felix, take him to the vet immediately.
- Lastly, what if your aging pet is having trouble getting around – bumping into things. It could mean that your pet is having an eye problem. Cataracts may mean your pet will have trouble climbing stairs or navigating the backyard like he used to. Severe cases can blind your pet so you may want to consider cataract surgery by a veterinary opthalmologist.