Senior Pet Care

Prevents Disease & Extends Life

senior pet care

Your senior pet is a cherished friend and loyal companion, deserving the best of care. SPORTSVET Animal Medical Center is acutely aware of the needs of seniors. We work hard to preserve the dignity and comfort of every aging pet, from champion athlete to household companion.

With age comes a variety of challenges for every animal. Your pet may be stiff, slowing down, or facing medical issues. Your SPORTSVET veterinarian understands the aging process and works with you to keep your pet as happy and vital as possible in the senior stage of life.

Senior Pet Care

When your dog or cat enters the senior years, our care is designed to identify age-related concerns at the earliest point and initiate treatment that minimizes or eliminates these problems. When will your pet become a “senior”? While this varies, the standard is somewhere around age 7. Of course, size is a factor—large breed dogs live shorter lives and many enter the senior years at age 4. Your veterinarian will be the best judge of when to begin the senior pet protocol.

The most important step to senior pet care is to schedule wellness exams every six months for healthy animals. Rapid aging allows diseases to progress at an alarming rate in animals, often with no visible symptoms. The six-month visit is the minimum for optimum care in senior pets.

Changes in Your Senior Pet

Changes may occur in activity, eating habits, elimination, and disposition—any physical or behavioral change may be an indicator that something is wrong. Changes may include:

  • Household accidents
  • Increase or decrease in appetite
  • Lameness
  • Aggression
  • Increased inactivity
  • Excessive sleeping
  • Foul odor from mouth or body
  • Open sores or lumps
  • Panting or heavy breathing at rest
  • Seizures

Identifying the cause of these symptoms early allows us to treat with the least invasive measures possible. Contact us at once to discuss any such changes.

The Senior Pet Exam

Every six months, we examine your pet from head to toe, noting any changes in weight, skin and coat, demeanor, and overall condition. We will discuss with you the changes you have seen since the last visit, important information in identifying subtle or developing problems.

In addition to the physical exam, we perform a variety of laboratory tests such as blood work, urinalysis, and fecal exam. We may order additional tests, such as radiographs, ultrasound, or electrocardiogram, if your pet shows signs of disease.  Whatever we discover, we always discuss our findings with you, including available tests and the various options for treatment.

We offer both medical treatments and holistic methods for addressing pain from age-related diseases and chronic conditions. Our goal: a happy, healthy, and comfortable senior pet.

The AVMA senior pet brochure offers an age chart, a list of changes to be aware of in your senior pet, and more.

SportsVet Animal Medical Center was the best vet I have ever had. I live in Minneapolis now and not only are all of the vets very expensive, they do not really seem to care in the same way Dr. Jacobs did.

Nadine Frances Mercil

I’ve never seen a vet be so caring and compassionate to not only the animals, but the animals owners as well. We think so highly of Dr. Jacobs and his staff that we travel and hour and a half for all our vet needs.

Keri Robinson

SportsVet Animal Medical Center performed TPLO surgery on our 7 year old flat-coat retriever. We were very pleased with her care, Dr. Jacobs and his staff could not have been more thorough, professional, and friendly.

Vickie Hart

Thank you so much, Dr. Jacobs and staff, for helping little Duke regain use of his left leg (he suffered a grade 4 patellar luxation). We so appreciate your kind care, surgical skill and postop therapy.

Lila & Barry McCammon

Dr. Jacobs and his staff are AMAZING. Every time I called, which was often (multiple times a week), they were happy to speak with me. They even sent me video of her during her underwater treadmill therapy. 4.5 years later, while some of her other joints struggle, her knee is perfect.

Callie Cozzolino

Dixie had her TPLO surgery on Jan. 10th and went for her first water therapy yesterday. She is doing great. Getting stronger and using her leg more everyday. Everyone at SportsVet is soooo supportive and caring. Thank you again so much!!!!

Becky Didier

AAHA Accredited Hospital