Old dogs can live the last few years of their lives in happiness if you take good care of them. Unlike their younger counterparts, older dogs do require extra attention. They aren’t as active anymore, and due to their more inactive lifestyle they might gain weight. Older dogs can also become more attached to their owners, spending more time in their vicinity. Others can a bit grumpy, whilst some actually get more friendly. Sounds quite a bit like humans, right?
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Make sure you keep a close eye on your dog’s weight. Weight loss can point to underlying health problems that require medical assistance. You may want to adjust your dog’s diet somewhat as they age. Since they aren’t running around as much they will usually gain weight. If your dog has always had a healthy weight, and he adds a bit of fat as he/she is aging then there is no need to panic – but keep it under control!
Old age often brings physical discomforts, but thanks to modern science many problems can be alleviated. Making sure that your dog receives all the necessary vaccinations, and the regular flea treatment, will help make his/her life at old age comfortable.
Even though your dog’s daily routine consists of less physical/mental activity, that does not mean that you shouldn’t bother with mental stimulation. Just like in old people, keeping your dog’s brain active will help slow down the aging process.
There are many different brands of dog food that are specifically catered to senior dogs. They often contain less calories to offset possible weight gain as your dog ages. Some products have been designed for specific medical issues that your dog may be affected by. It would be wise to consult a veterinarian before serving such products to your dog. Another reason why you should keep your dog’s weight gain in check are arthritis-related symptoms. Bones lose strength at the later stages of life, and the more weight they have to carry around – the more pronounced the health issues of your dog become.
As always, if your dog’s health concerns you then take him to the vet. The earlier health problems are detected, the better the chances of solving them – especially in older dogs.
And here is the (belated) part 2 of the most popular dogs in the UK list. Some of these will come as no surprise, whilst others might not be so obvious.
There are an English and American variant. The breed dates back to the 14th century.
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A golden retriever’s main purpose was to retrieve ducks during a hunt. They are now some of the most popular pets in the world.
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King Charles Spaniel
A royal favourite as well. British and Russian royalty have often owned members of this small dog breed.
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West Highland White Terrier
A Scottish breed, as the name implies. Various ancient Scottish clans have bred the West Highland White Terrier.
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Often associated with aggression, yet most Bulldogs are kind dogs. Well known for their distinctive appearance.
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Fluffy dogs are, for obvious reasons, popular as pets. There are several fluffy dog breeds that are great pets. The Keeshond is one example, if you like loads of hair on your dogs then this breed will make you a happy person. The Samoyed has a fluffy and dense undercoat, they require frequent brushing though to keep in good shape. Pekingese dogs are certainly fluffy, but their thick coat does require regular inspection since many parasites love hiding underneath it! If you prefer larger dogs, then check out the Tibetan Mastiff. This beast has a beautiful full coat, but beware – it needs plenty of maintenance as well.
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Quite a few potential dog owners insist on getting a dog that isn’t too hairy. Most complain about the hair certain dog breeds leave all over your house, and some people are actually allergic to the hair. Then there are people who are specifically looking for long haired dog breeds because they love taking care of their hair. Here is a small list of hairy dog breeds.
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The Maltese dog is an excellent choice if you love hairy but clean looking dogs. The Bichon Havanese is a rather scruffy looking dog if you don’t take care of its hair often. But they sure have character! Yorkshire Terriers are small dogs that you can easily take with you, including all their beautiful long hair. The German Keeshond has a wonderful two layer coat of silver and black hair, a medium-sized dog.
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Now if you’d rather have a larger hairy dog breed as companion then the Afghan Hound certainly fits your requirements. It has a thick silky coat and is easily recognisable.