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Health Issues For Dogs Over Five
Dog health is a crucial matter for all ages. These special animals, like elderly humans have specific needs that differ from the younger generations. This is true in terms of nutrition and exercise. It is also valid in terms of health issues. As a result, it is necessary to know the potential health problems to maintain the proper level of dog care during this stage of their life.
One of the most prevalent and common health problems is arthritis. Causal factors include the lack of certain nutrients and former injuries. Weight factors in, as does the breed. Dogs with this disease may suffer from very specific types. These include Osteoarthritis or Degenerative Bone Disease, Myostis and Spondylosis . The dog is most likely to have problems at the hind end or along the spine.
Dogs with Osteoarthritis have difficulty getting up. With this form of arthritis, dogs hesitate to climb or jump up. They have stiff limbs. You can see their movements cease to be fluid. A massage or gentle probing can reveal a loss of tone and muscle mass. Massage, anti-inflammatory drugs and acupuncture can relieve the pain. Also keep weight under control and make sure the dog exercises. Do not allow extensive rest unless there is a serious bout of pain.
Spondylosis is arthritis in the spine. Larger breeds such as Labradors and German Shepherds fall prey to this type of illness. You can see their backs arch or lie in a very straight fashion. The treatment is the same as for Osteoarthritis.
Myostis is also inflammation of the joints. The most common cause is a previous injury. There is muscle atrophy, sore spots and sensitive areas. The treatment is anti-inflammatory drugs, massage and acupuncture. Exercise will also ensure the atrophy does not continue and help in maintaining dog health.
Dog Hearing Loss
One of the things an elderly dog loses first is hearing. This is not the selective hearing common to puppies. This is actual loss of the faculty to hear what you are saying. Age and ear infections, past and present, play a prominent role. Dog care in this instance may include eardrops for present infections. You will also need to raise your voice and/or stomp your feet to catch the animal’s attention. Past lessons in hand and body signals can also come into play during this dog age.
Dog Sight Problems
As your dog ages, certain illnesses may attack the eyes. Among these are cataracts, glaucoma and dry eye. With Cataracts, the eyes change color, becoming opaque as the passage of light to the retina is blocked. An operation can remove the cataracts. In the case of glaucoma, increases fluids on the eye. Sometimes a secondary effect of cataracts, glaucoma can result in blindness. Anti-inflammatory drugs may reduce the fluids or you could opt for surgery.
Dry eye is the opposite of glaucoma. There is not enough fluid, this is the result of a reduction in tearing. The result can be blindness if left unchecked. Eye drops help diminish the problem. Anti-inflammatories, or a suitable replacement, are also a viable.
In all cases of failing eyesight, consider dog health and safety first. Maintain a routine. Do not move objects, including furniture. Always make sure your dog is in a safe place.
Dog Tumors and Canine Cancer
The scary C is often part of a dog’s aging process. Tumors grow on various parts of the body. Many are benign; others are not. Malignant tumors spread rapidly. Sometimes, only surgery can remove them. Oft times, homeopathic treatments can help. Benign tumors are sometimes localized infections. They grow in one spot but do not multiply elsewhere.
Always check your dog for signs. A thorough petting or massage will locate these lumps. Your Vet can help ascertain whether the tumors are benign or malignant. Sometimes he or she can do so without invasive measures. Only after ascertaining this should you embark upon any form of serious treatment.
Diet, exercise and a stable environment is always helpful. Natural remedies may also prove effective. Yet, the best measures are preventative ones. Try to provide the best in diet, food and overall environment. Implement from puppyhood a thorough system of dog health measures and your dog will lead a long and healthy life.
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