||Senior Pet Care Houston, TX
Read about dangers of not spay/neutering your pet (click here)
Senior pets love to eat and sleep. They appear healthy, but do you know what to expect as your pet ages? A pet enters his or her senior years beginning at age 7. Senior pets can begin to develop diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, endocrine disease and cancer. If left undetected, diseases can put your pet's health at risk and expose you to expensive treatment. Since diseases can go unnoticed in their early stages, we recommend twice yearly preventative care exams for all pets, but these exams are extremely important for the senior pet. Regular exams from Longenbaugh Veterinarian Hospital in Houston are important steps in protecting your senior pet's health. Early detection usually means a better prognosis and less costly treatment.
SHOULD YOU SPAY/NEUTER YOUR SENIOR DOG?
Are you aware of the life-saving health benefits of spaying/neutering your senior dog? Dogs can live longer and stay healthier if they are spayed /neutered. Of course, spaying/neutering your pet is the best way to prevent unwanted pregnancies. An estimated 5 million to 8 million animals are euthanized in shelters across this country every year. The number one cause is irresponsible pet owners not spaying or neutering their pet. Pets depend on us to keep them safe and keep them healthy. At Longenbaugh Veterinary Hospital, we believe our job extends beyond the exam room. We want to provide you with the education needed to keep your pet safe and healthy at all times.
If a female dog is not spayed, her risk of developing ovarian or uterine cancer as well as uterine infections substantially increases with age. These conditions can often be life-threatening. Spaying before a female's first heat reduces the risk of developing mammary tumors. Waiting to spay your dog until after several heats or a litter of puppies increases your dog's chance of developing mammary tumors to 1 in 4. If a female dog becomes pregnant at an advanced age, giving birth can have devastating health consequences for her as well as the pups. Fluctuating hormones in a non-spayed female dog can affect other conditions she might have such as epilepsy or diabetes.
Unneutered male dogs have increased risk of testicular tumors and infections and prostate disease with age. After age 5, 60 percent of unneutered male dogs show evidence of prostate enlargement. A senior unneutered male has an increased risk of testicular cancer, a fairly common form of cancer found in intact male dogs. A neutered male dog cannot get testicular cancer. Also unneutered male dogs are more likely to escape from their yard in order to find a female. Neutering him can make him less likely to run away, mark his territory with urine, or get into neighborhood fights.
Do not worry that your senior dog will become fat or lazy just because she has been spayed or he has been neutered. With regular exercise and proper nutrition, your pet will maintain their correct healthy weight. Please remember that senior dogs require fewer calories as they age and become less active. If your senior dog has arthritis or other health conditions, we can help you find an appropriate exercise plan that will allow your dog to be as active and healthy as possible.
Please remember the countless number of homeless pets in shelters before letting your pet have a litter of puppies. You can never be certain that one of those pups will not end up in a shelter for euthanasia. Please spay/neuter your pet.
Our senior pet care in Houston, TX includes twice yearly thorough physical exams of your pet's eyes, ears, nose, mouth, teeth, skin, coat, muscles, heart, lungs, lymph nodes, abdomen, genitals, and rectum. We provide a weight and behavior assessment. Proper nutrition is discussed. An individual vaccination protocol for your pet is established. Intestinal parasite testing is performed. This test, called a fecal, is to determine if your pet has hookworms, tapeworms, whipworms, or roundworms. We also educate you on the dangers these parasites have for humans. A yearly heartworm test is performed and heartworm preventative is prescribed. Remember heartworm preventative should be given every 30 days. Senior blood work is done to establish your pet's base line values and for early disease detection. The blood work includes a complete blood count to help in the diagnosis of cancer, infection, anemia and bleeding problems, and to provide information on your pet's immune system. Blood work will help us assess the function of the liver, kidneys, pancreas and other organs. A urine sample is collected for evidence of infection, kidney function, and diabetes.
Sometimes further testing is needed such as radiography, echocardiography, and thyroid. If your senior pet is diagnosed with a disease, we will discuss a treatment plan, and a long term care plan. We want you to be well educated on your pet's disease and what to expect in caring for your pet. As your pet's health care team, we will contact about your pet's progress, medication needs, and routine blood work and exams.
For an individualized senior care program please contact us. We can help set up a regular schedule for senior care to make caring for your senior pet more economical.