Older dogs have different nutritional needs than younger dogs. The dog’s metabolism changes every year as the dog gets older.

Therefore, dietary nutrition can do a lot to help our dogs stay healthy as they get older. An increased dose of trace elements, vitamins, and amino acids is desirable. For example, with natural food supplements such as brewer’s yeast.

Things to Feed An Old Dog

First of all, There are some feeding rules you have to follow for senior dogs.

  • The Basics
  • Lower Calories
  • Some helpful addition
  • Keep The Joints Supple

The Basics

In most cases, you will always need to change your dog food when he gets older. The healthiest dog food for senior dogs usually contains less fat, a lot of animal protein components, and more fiber.

Fewer vegetable fillers are also beneficial, with which the dog is unnecessarily stressed, and these fillers do not provide any significant nutrients. It is best to avoid dry food.

They often contain too many fillers, and the valuable nutrients are only chemically added. Besides, the preservatives included may only put additional strain on the older four-legged friend. [1]1

Lower Calories

As the older dog moves less, he generally needs fewer calories. If you put your dog on a diet, please keep the following in mind: This way he gets less of the trace elements, vitamins and amino acids that are now essential for him and this cannot be in the dog’s interest.

Now, it is common knowledge that obesity is widespread in older dogs, but one often hears from dog owners that this is not that serious after all, people would be a bit squat in old age. That may be so, but be careful: Every kilo our friend weighs contributes to painful arthritic diseases.

The kidneys have to work harder, as do the liver and heart. So watch your dog’s weight! [2]2

Some Helpful Addition

Top-rated senior dog food is characterized by an extra dose of B vitamins and zinc. A high fiber diet is also essential as it strengthens the intestines.

If you already have good wet food, you can supplement it with brewer’s yeast and chlorella specifically for the age of your dog.

The remedy consists of natural brewer’s yeast, contains vitamins B1, B2, B5, B6 PP, B12, and biotin as well as many amino acids and trace elements that precisely compensate for deficiencies.

It is also highly recommended for a dog with poor nutrition or before operations. It also protects older dogs from a sluggish bowel and an undersupply of nutrients.

Brewer’s yeast can compensate for this deficit well to very well. Brewer’s yeast is the richest and most natural source of B vitamins, amino acids, and trace elements.

Keep The Joints Supple

Joint wear is unfortunately a fundamental problem in older dogs. Finding appropriate dog food or supplementary food can do a lot to relieve pain and slow down further signs of wear and tear in the joints.

Tip: Don’t be afraid to give your dog pain medication. Dealing with acute, painful relapses of osteoarthritis is often not easy for a dog who cannot communicate its pain. An anti-inflammatory pain reliever (NSAID) can help the dog better endure the excruciating pain in acute phases.

So, as long as your vet approves, do not hesitate to give a pain reliever. A veterinarian you trust will provide your dog with a suitable remedy. [3]3

Is Senior Dog Food Necessary?

Of course, it is. A healthy senior dog diet with animal proteins is recommended to maintain muscles. Besides, these can also be supported by the preparations mentioned above.

There are various providers on the market for this. Sensible feeding and supplementary feeding is essential for the older dog. If the dog moves less, the muscles also become weaker, of course, old dogs occasionally sway when they run or stand up.

Older dogs feel joint pain, they turn grey, and the bones become brittle, the vascular walls calcify. Ask your vet which remedy of choice you can give here.

A dog only feels the reluctance to move if it suffers from severe osteoarthritis or has back problems. Otherwise, every dog will be happy to be a loyal companion for a walk into old age.

Feed an Old Dog That won’t Eat

To make your dog eat, it is essential to find suitable dog food. This should contain easily digestible animal protein and plenty of essential amino acids.

The animal protein is gentle on the intestines compared to vegetable proteins. As a rule, flatulence comes from having too many plant-based components in pet food, and this should be avoided.

Furthermore, your dog should drink plenty of water to keep the animal’s kidneys healthy. This is very important so that the old dog does not become dehydrated.

If he does not drink very much, you can also mix his dry food with water. Often, older animals like to take it that way.

Human Food for Senior Dogs

Human food is sometimes good for a dog, but not all of them. It is crucial to have a high-quality source of protein in the feed so that the kidneys and liver are not stressed too much.

Unfortunately, the protein content on the packaging does not provide any reliable information about the quality of the protein it contains.

Tip: If your dog smells of urine, it can indicate kidney weakness. Since the old four-legged friend consumes a lot of water with kidney diseases and has to let out a lot of urine, kidney disease is often mistaken for incontinence. Therefore;

  • Avoid too many vegetable proteins
  • Mix dry food with water
  • Always make drinking water available
  • Do not confuse kidney failure with incontinence

Finally, tartar addition in human food is a big problem, and not just in old dogs. Dry food often causes a pH value that is not precisely beneficial and is, therefore, one of the causes of gum inflammation.

Here, it can be advisable to switch to high-quality wet food, especially for the sake of the dog’s fluid balance. Besides, the dog can have pain when eating dry food, and we shouldn’t expect that from him.

Dry senior dog food for small breeds also favors tartar due to a low pH value in the mouth. If there is too much tartar, your vet should remove it under general anesthesia.

This way, you can preserve your dog’s dental health for a long time. Also, remember that dental health means general health. It would help if you did not let the inflammation in the mouth area arise in the first place.

Often they are also an indication of a non-intact intestinal flora. It can be helpful to switch to additive-free dog food.

Final Thoughts

As they get older, most dogs take it easy. A leisurely walk through the district and a nap afterward are more her thing than frolic around.

But if your dog exercises less, your dog also uses fewer calories. Because your dog’s metabolism works more leisurely overall, its energy requirements drop much more than that of a young dog who is less active.

References

References
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