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Senior Pet Proof Your Home in 5 Easy Steps

- Provided by VetStreet.com

As your furry companion enters his golden years, you'll want to make sure that he's as comfortable as possible and that he can easily get around the house. Creaky joints, as well as vision and hearing loss, can make going up and down stairs and traveling from room to room a challenge for your senior pet. Here are 5 simple ways to make your senior pet's life a little easier.

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5 Ways to Make Your Home Comfortable for Senior Pets

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Upgrade Her Bedding

To help your cat or dog feel more comfortable in her old age, add some extra cushioning to her bed. Dr. Patty Khuly recommends bedding made from egg-crate foam. Although they're more expensive, waterbeds are another great option for soothing your pet's achy joints — just be sure to keep his nails trimmed so he doesn't poke a hole in the mattress.

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Clean Up Cluttered Floors

If your senior pet is starting to go blind, make his life a little easier by cleaning up any clutter on the floor. Also, make sure he has a clear path to his food and water dishes, and that toys are consistently stored in the same place.

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Invest in Nonslip Rugs

Walking on slippery hardwood floors might not be so easy for your aging four-legged companion. Help him out by putting down carpeting and nonslip rugs so he has more traction as he walks around the house. 

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Play Brain Games

Just because your pet is getting older doesn't mean she wants to spend her days doing nothing. Keep her mind spry and active by playing with her every day. Batting at feather toys and pouncing on a catnip mouse will keep your feline feeling young at heart. A daily walk will help your pup stay in shape — both physically and mentally. Food puzzles are another excellent way to keep your pet's mind and body active. The interactive game requires your animal to eat slower and use her brain.

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Teach Him to Use a Ramp or Stairs

If you share your bed with your aging animal, try installing a ramp or stairs so climbing up to snuggle with you isn't so difficult on his legs. Older dogs can also benefit from learning to use a ramp or stairs to get into the car when you go on trips or visit the vet.

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Specialty Care

Sometimes sick or injured pets need the care of a veterinary medical specialist. When that happens, VCA specialty hospitals work closely with the general practitioner veterinarians who refer cases to us in order to provide seamless veterinary care to your pet. When your pet is facing any kind of serious illness or injury, our specialty referral hospitals will provide the compassionate and expert care your beloved pet needs.

Our goal is to make sure that when you and your pet are in need that you have access to board certified specialists who are up to date on the very latest developments in their field. In our state of the art hospitals, our specialists also have access to the most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment tools and techniques from ultrasonography and endoscopy to CAT scans and even MRI.

As part of the VCA family, we have over 83 specialty hospitals across the US and Canada which provide referral specialty care, so there may be one near you. Our specialized services include: behavior, cardiology, critical care, dentistry, dermatology, integrative medicine, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology, rehabilitation, reproduction, and surgery.

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Emergency Care

In case of emergency, please call us immediately. If it is after hours, check with a local animal hospital emergency clinic.

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