When dogs grow old, a lot changes for them: their muscles break down, physical fitness declines and the ability to react may not be what it used to be. This does not mean that you have to do without dog sports, games and long walks - as long as you take it a bit easier as an owner and pay attention to the needs of your four-legged friend.
Which sports are suitable for old dogs?
With an old dog, you should only do dog sports that he enjoys and that your veterinarian considers harmless. Tracking is one of the many suitable ways to keep an old dog busy. This type of sport and activity can be learned quickly, is fun and, above all, stresses the nose and head of your four-legged friend, but does not strain him physically.
Fast-paced sports like agility are usually no longer the right thing for old dogs - especially not if they suffer from physical limitations. Maybe your pet has also followed this sport for a lifetime and still enjoys it. Then reduce your course to the easy obstacles and skip heavy tasks such as jumps.
These games are also fun for the senior
The game units should also be designed a little more quietly - wild retrieve games are no longer suitable for seniors. However, you can do quiet search games in the house or during a dog walk with any dog: Just hide a few treats that your dog has to look for. You can also stow the snacks in a special toy, such as a feed ball.
Clicker training is also a nice way to keep old dogs busy. A special intelligence toy, which you can get from pet stores, is suitable for at home - for example so-called fumbling boards, where your dog can work out snacks with a few tricks and skillful paw movements.
Make walks beautiful
If your old dog is healthy, there is no reason not to go on long walks with him or to take him on a bike. But keep a close eye on your four-legged friend - is he still enjoying it or is he just chasing you listlessly? If the long stretches are difficult for him, shorter laps are the order of the day - perhaps you can delight him with a varied environment. Anyone who drives off by car every now and then to explore a new walking area is sure to please his loyal friend.
If you take your four-legged friend with you on the bike, you should also buy a trailer. If your animal companion gets tired, he can rest a little while and still enjoy the fresh air.
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More tips for the dog in old age
Keep in mind that even old dogs enjoy accompanying their owners everywhere, as they used to - for example to the office. Design your sleeping area there with a soft, warm dog blanket appropriate to your age and consider buying an orthopedic dog bed if necessary.
If you are not sure what your old dog can and cannot do, it is best to ask your veterinarian and keep a close eye on your pet. They know it best and look at it when it is overwhelmed.
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