Canine senior pet care is vital, old age is not a disease nor an excuse for poor welfare. Sometimes helping owners understand this can be challenging. With some of the most frequently seen veterinary complaints being more common in geriatric patients, helping owners recognise treatable diseases in senior pets is one of the best things we can do for our patient’s well-being.
Our latest video helps educate clients on some diseases of old age, how to recognise them, and what can be done to treat them.
Old dogs – new tricks?
The ‘he’s just getting old’ excuse is still widely used as a cover-all for many ailments. We, with the benefit of our extended veterinary education, may realise this – but it’s not our clients’ fault that they don’t see it the same way. Our duty is to stay calm and educate.
Our aim, as vets, is to help dogs live an active, fun, and pain-free life for as long as possible. The difference we could make to that goal is humbling – were we not restrained by time, cost, and opportunity. What we lack is a suitable communication channel to tell people what we can do for them and their senior dogs. Hopefully, our video can help.
Why this video?
Our canine senior pet care video starts by explaining the additional care needs of a senior pet. A few nuggets of at-home care advice can help engage clients – these are simple ideas that are easy to implement with little financial outlay.
Our older pets are just like us really. It’s likely the care advice is similar to that provided at your local GP clinic. Tips including providing a comfy bed, a coat in cold weather, good preventative healthcare, quality rest, and regular toilet breaks can seem obvious in humans – but may be overlooked when it comes to our canine friends. This type of straightforward advice is appreciated by a diligent owner as well as by their aging hound.
Recognising Disease in Older Dogs
There is an extensive catalogue of medical problems which are more commonly seen in older patients – it would be too lengthy to list them all. However, highlighting some of the most common can help encourage owners to address them. To do that we need to catch owners’ attention – it’s a sort of honest and factual click-bait.
Does your dog have accidents in the house? Do you get bored on dog walks because your dog lags behind? Does your dog’s breath stink? There will be owners out there who recognise these changes in their own pets, but don’t understand their significance.
Let’s remember most owners want their pets to be happy and comfortable. We just need the chance to tell them that a) there is a problem and b) how we can help.
Canine Senior Pet Care – Get the practice involved
Canine senior pet care can be a great opportunity to promote your pet health plan. Older pets need regular vaccinations and check-ups. They may need monthly nail trims – much better for the owner if they’re pre-paid. Owners of golden oldies are probably the most likely to benefit from discounts on prescription diets or life-long meds.
If the whole practice is singing from the same hymn sheet, you can try and encourage rebooking health check appointments. Don’t be tempted to do the booster and sign off the geriatric dog until next year. Twelve months is a long time for a dog – so see them back in six months, max – and book it now.
You could consider running a promotion alongside the video – longer booster appointments for older dogs, for example, to give you chance to discuss clinical findings properly and explain to owners how things could be improved. Or free dental checks? Or reduced-rate pain assessment appointments?
Older dogs can seem like second best – not featured on social media pages as often as fluffy puppies. Left longing for attention because they’re not constantly returning a half-chewed slipper to their owner’s lap. Allowed to limp, lump, and stink their way to an early grave. Together we can change this sad reality for geriatric dogs everywhere – download our Senior Care video now! Log into your account www.vetchannel-media.co.uk