News To Keep Your Mature Dog Happy & Healthy

Periodic Newsletter Received from The IAMS Company:
From: “Iams Dog”
To: hart (at)
Subject: Like Fine Wine, Your Senior Dog Mellows With Age

Older Dogs Offer The Best Of Both Worlds

Imagine adopting a dog that is already housebroken, sleeps through the night and doesn’t feel the need to chew on your favorite shoes. These are just a few of the many advantages that adopting an older dog may give you. Dogs can mellow with age and outgrow a number of puppy-like behaviors that can try your patience.

Adopting an older dog eliminates a lot of guesswork too. Because he has already reached maturity, you won’t be surprised by his size and temperament. Most importantly though, your mature dog has already learned how to learn, making his assimilation into your family hierarchy much less traumatic on everyone. Some dogs need to run and jump outdoors. Others prefer the indoors. While others relate better to adults than children.

All this information is taken into account and then passed along to you so you can make an informed decision. However, if a dog has developed bad habits early in life it may be more difficult to break him of them.

All in all, adopting an older dog can be a totally rewarding experience that offers you the best of both worlds—a high degree of enjoyment without the high maintenance.

The Dish – Seven Years Young

By age seven (age five for large breeds), your dog’s nutritional needs are changing. IAMS Active Maturity helps your dog get the most out of maturity with high-quality chicken protein, which provides the necessary amino acids to help maintain muscle mass. It contains antioxidants such as vitamin E and beta-carotene to reduce free radical load to help protect and support your dog’s immune system.

Active Maturity contains IAMS Daily Dental Care. As your dog chews, IAMS Daily Dental Care helps reduce tartar buildup by up to 50%. The size and thickness of the IAMS Active Maturity kibble is specially adapted to the needs of older dogs. A gentle patented fiber source helps maintain colon health and enhance the ability to absorb age-essential nutrients, so more nutrition can stay in your dog.

Health Watch – What to be on the lookout for as your senior dog ages

It’s a fact of life. As dogs (and humans for that matter) grow older, they begin to slow down. Though exercise and a proper diet can help improve your dog’s quality of life, it’s important to look for these health problems in older dogs.

Obesity: Because his metabolism has slowed down, your older dog can gain weight. A proper diet is the single most important benefit you can give an overweight dog. Exercise is the second.

Dental Disease: Just like humans, dogs develop dental diseases like gingivitis too. This can lead to tooth loss and/or infection. Your veterinarian will conduct a complete dental examination in conjunction with your dog’s yearly checkup.

Arthritis: This degenerative joint disease is very common in older dogs. It is usually signaled by difficulty rising, climbing stairs, jumping or falling on slippery floors. There are a number of anti-inflammatory medications that your vet can prescribe to help improve your dog’s comfort.

Eye Disorders: Cataracts and dry eye are commonly associated with older dogs. Be on the lookout for symptoms of both.

Endocrine Disorders: Hyperadrenocorticism (Cushing’s disease) and hypothyroidism or an underactive thyroid gland are quite common in older dogs. Both are treatable with medications that can greatly improve your dog’s quality of life.

Heart Disease: Chronic valvular heart disease, or thickening of the valves, is the most common heart disease in senior dogs. It can cause abnormal blood flow within the heart chambers leading to more serious problems. Early detection and proper therapy can slow the progression of heart disease.

Diabetes: Whether due to poor insulin secretion or resistance to insulin, senior dogs have a higher risk of developing diabetes. Your veterinarian may put your dog on a special diet as well as prescribe medication.

Fortunately, with care, attention and your veterinarian, you can help to prevent or aid in battling these illnesses. Remember dogs age roughly seven biological years every calendar year. So between annual checkups your pet has grown significantly older.

Headlines For Canines – Doggy Massage

The soothing sensation of touch and the manipulation of muscles has shown a benefit for both humans and animals. The simple touch of the fur enhances the human/animal bond. For the less active and older pet as well as the young or working pet, the owner can provide a gentle comforting touch. Benefits of massage include:

Increased flexibility
A sense of wellness
Reduction of pain
Increased circulation
Calmness and comfort

There are basic techniques you can use at home and certified massage therapists who can provide a deeper, more thorough massage. The final decision to add massage to your pet’s health regime should be decided between you and your veterinarian.

Copyright© 2005 The Iams Company. All rights reserved.

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