How do I know if my dog is considered a senior?
Many references will say a dog is a senior if he or she is 7 or more years old; however, it actually depends on the expected lifespan of the dog, based on his age, breed, size and general health. The general rule, though, is that the last 25% of your dog's lifespan is considered to be his "senior" years. Be sure to have your new dog examined by a veterinarian and discuss if and when he is considered a "senior" based on these factors.
What should I expect during the ride home?
The first ride in a car might be stressful for your dog depending on his history. If your senior dog has been in a shelter for a while, it may be difficult for him. If he’s used to car rides, he might enjoy the trip! Take a crate with you and make a nice bed or provide a pile of blankets so he can lie down. Avoid feeding for several hours before the first ride to avoid car sickness.
How should I introduce my new senior dog to my household?
Walk your dog around his new home. Show him his food, water and bedding. Take him outside and show him where you want him to eliminate and praise him when he does. If he seems very anxious, you may want to confine him to a small area of the house at first. You can use special "calming" products to help him feel comfortable.
DAP Dog Appeasing Pheromone
- Available in a spray, a diffuser or a collar, this hormone mimics the natural pheromone released by the mother dog 3-5 days after having a litter of puppies, causing a calming and reassuring effect on the dog.
- Calming treats can be offered in any fearful situation
Should I keep my senior dog in a crate when I am not at home?
Crates are excellent training tools if the dog is not house trained already or is likely to be destructive when left alone. Some older dogs are more comfortable in a crate if that is what they are used to. Otherwise, it is not necessary.
Petnation Indoor/Outdoor Pet Home
- lightweight, durable, foldable, ventilated soft crate
Newport Pet Crate End Table
- attractive enough to keep in the living room
When should my new senior dog meet my other pets?
Keep all other pets in the house away until the newcomer is comfortable in his area. Provide as much human interaction as possible! When the dog appears to be relaxed, you can gradually allow him to explore the rest of the house and meet other pets, under your direct supervision, until all residents are content with each other. Some senior dogs will adapt very quickly, having had lots of experience with other animals and varied environments.
Zuke's Jerky Naturals Dog Treats
- Treats can encourage dogs to be more social with each other. Have a "treat party" when the dogs encounter each other, turning a potentially negative situation into a positive one.
- DAP Dog Appeasing Pheromone (see above)