Our veterinary team is able to provide comprehensive geriatric care for senior dogs and cats in the Middlesex area to help your beloved companion to stay as comfortable and happy as possible well into their old age. 

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Geriatric Care for Senior Dogs & Cats

To help your pet maintain a good quality of life as they continue to age, our senior pets need regularly scheduled routine preventive care and early diagnosis as they grow into their golden years. 

Diligent care can help extend your pet's life and good health as they age, so it's important that they attend regularly scheduled wellness exams, even if they seem healthy. 

Our veterinarians are here to help your pet age gracefully, healthily and happily. We provide care to Middlesex pets to help them achieve optimal health by identifying and treating health issues as they emerge and providing proactive treatment while their conditions are still easily managed.  

Geriatric Care for Pets, Middlesex

Typical Health Problems

Due to improved dietary options and better veterinary care, companion cats and dogs are living far longer today than they have in the past. 

While this is certainly something to be celebrated, pet owners and veterinarians now face more age-related conditions than they did in the past as well.

Senior pets are typically prone to the following conditions:

  • Joint or bone disorders

    Geriatric Dogs

    As your dog ages, there are a number of different bone and joint disorders that may result in discomfort and pain. Some of the most common of these joint and bone disorders in geriatric dogs include hip dysplasia, reduced spinal flexibility, osteochondrosis, arthritis and disorders affecting their growth plates. 

    Addressing these issues early is essential for keeping your dog comfortable as they continue to age. Treatment for joint and bone issues in senior dogs ranges from simply reducing levels of exercise, to the use of analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs, to surgery to remove diseased tissue, stabilize joints or reduce pain.

    Geriatric Cats

    While osteoarthritis is typically a condition we think of in older dogs, this painful condition can also affect your senior cat's joints.

    Symptoms of osteoarthritis in cats are more subtle than those in dogs. While cats can experience a decrease in range of motion the most common symptoms of osteoarthritis in geriatric cats include weight loss, loss of appetite, depression, change in general attitude, poor grooming habits, urination or defecation outside the litter pan, and inability to jump on and off objects. Lameness typically seen in dogs is not commonly reported by cat owners. 

  • Cancer

    It is believed that approximately 50% of all pets in the US die from cancers. That's why it's important for your senior pet to visit the vet for routine wellness exams as they age.

    Ensuring that you bring your aging pet in for a routine checkup even when they are healthy gives our vets an opportunity to detect the early signs of cancer and other diseases which respond best to treatment when they are caught in their earliest stages. 

  • Heart Disease

    Like people, heart disease can be a problem for geriatric pets.

    Senior dogs commonly suffer from congestive heart failure, which occurs when the heart isn't pumping blood efficiently, causing fluid to back up in the heart, lungs, and chest cavity.

    While heart disease isn't as common in cats as it is in dogs, HCM—or Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy—is a relatively common condition affecting senior cats. It causes the walls of your cat's heart to thicken, decreasing the heart's ability to properly function. 

  • Blindness and hearing loss

    The degeneration of your pet's eyes and ears can lead to a variety of degrees of blindness and deafness as our pets age. This process is much more common in dogs than it is in cats. 

    When these conditions are age-related they may come on slowly, allowing geriatric pets to adjust their behavior and making it difficult for pet owners to notice. 

  • Liver disease

    In senior cats, liver disease is common and may be the result of high blood pressure or hyperthyroidism. Symptoms of liver disease in cats include loss of appetite, jaundice, drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, and increased thirst.

    Liver disease in dogs can cause a number of serious symptoms including seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, jaundice, abdominal fluid buildup, and weight loss.

    If your geriatric dog or cat is displaying any of the symptoms of liver disease, veterinary care is essential.

  • Diabetes

    Although dogs and cats can develop diabetes at any age, most dogs are diagnosed at approximately 7-10 years of age and the majority of cats diagnosed with diabetes are over 6 years of age.

    The symptoms of diabetes in cats and dogs include excessive thirst, cloudy eyes, chronic and recurring infections and an increase in their appetite while still losing weight. 

    Obesity is a risk factor for diabetes in both cats and dogs.  

  • Kidney disease

    As pets age, their kidneys tend to lose their function. In some cases, kidney disease can be caused by medications used to treat other common conditions seen in geriatric pets.

    While chronic kidney disease cannot be cured, it can be managed with a combination of diet and medications.  

  • Urinary tract disease

    Our Middlesex vets often see geriatric cats and dogs with urinary tract conditions and incontinence issues. Elderly pets can be prone to accidents as the muscles controlling the bladder weaken, but it's important to note that incontinence could be a sign of a bigger health issue such as a urinary tract infection or dementia.

    If your senior pet experiences incontinence issues it's important to take your pet in for geriatric vet care in the Middlesex area for a thorough examination.

Veterinary Care for Seniors

Our vets will conduct a comprehensive examination of your senior pet, asking about their home life in detail and performing any tests that they may require in order to receive additional insight into their health, well-being and condition.

Based on the findings, we'll recommend a treatment plan that can potentially include medications, activities and dietary changes that may help improve your senior pet's health, well-being and comfort. 

Routine Wellness Exams

Preventive care is essential to helping your senior pet live a healthy, happy and fulfilled life. It also gives our veterinarians the opportunity to detect diseases early. 

The early diagnosis of diseases will help to preserve your pet's physical health and to catch emerging health issues before they are able to develop into longer-term issues. 

With regular physical examinations, your pet will have the best chance at quality long-term health. 

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