The idea of “growing old together” is a goal many of us aspire to. It doesn’t matter if that special someone walks on two legs or four – both of your needs will change as you enter your golden years together. Age gracefully along with your furry (or scaly!) family member with these tips:
- Stay physically active and make your space more accessible for both of you. Reduced mobility is a common aspect of aging, and it applies to you as well as your pet. You may be used to your pet running circles around you or jumping up to your highest shelves, but as you two continue together, your pet’s mobility will decrease faster than yours. Stairs can be challenging for pets to climb, particularly as they age. Keep an eye on them and consult with your veterinarian if you have concerns about your pet’s mobility.
- Watch what you (and your pet) eat. A good diet may be an obvious part of a healthy lifestyle, but it’s essential for both you and your pet. You may both want to try some changes to your meals as you age. Speak with your veterinarian to make sure you are providing healthy and high-quality food for your animals.
- Use medication responsibly for your pet and yourself. Your pet can get sick just like you, and they may be prescribed an antimicrobial medication, such as an antibiotic, to help them get better. It’s essential that you both take medications exactly as prescribed by your veterinarian or doctor. Not following the directions for medication use can cause antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which means the medications that treat bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses are less effective, or not effective at all. This could mean your pet’s or your short-term infection is harder to treat, and can contribute to the longer-term problem of AMR.