Care & Compassion
for Your Senior Pet’s Golden Years
Did you know that once your pet reaches 7 years of age, he or she is considered a “senior”? Just like people, senior pets start to slow down a little bit with age and can develop common age-related health problems like arthritis and impaired vision.
Once your pet turns 7, it is important to schedule exams every 6 months to closely monitor him or her and to find potential issues early. (In human terms, pets age 6 years for each year of their lives. So a 7-year-old pet is 42 in human years.) In order to help you manage the cost of more frequent visits, we have developed a Senior Pet Care Program at Bellerose Animal Hospital that will help to greatly reduce your yearly medical bills. Be sure to contact us for more details.
Part of our Senior Pet Care Program includes monitoring the following checklist of common symptoms found in senior pets. Please review this list for any signs that your pet may be exhibiting and be sure to mention it to your veterinarian during your older pet’s check-up.
- Decreases in vision or hearing
- Lumps or growths
- Change in water consumption (watch carefully for an increase in volume)
- Change in appetite or consumption
- Lethargy or depression (listless behavior)
- Change in attitude (irritability)
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Weight gain or weight loss
- Bad breath
- Stiffness, trouble jumping
- Confusion, disorientation
- Loss of house training
- Change in sleep or wake cycle
- Decreased interest in you or his or her environment
When you come to Bellerose Animal Hospital, your senior pet will receive a comprehensive physical exam each time you bring him or her in, including an examination of:
- Muscles and joints
- Lymph nodes
- Internal organs
- Rectum prostrate
- Mammary glands
In addition, as needed, we will also provide the following:
- CBC—Complete blood cell count that tests for anemia, inflammation, infection, bone marrow dysfunction, and other problems
- Chemistry profile—A group of tests that aids in detection of problems associated with internal organ function (liver, kidney, pancreas, intestinal tract), endocrine system (diabetes), electrolytes, muscle/bone, etc.
- T4—A test used to detect thyroid disease (hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism)
- Ophthalmic exam—Full eye exam including tonometry, which measures the pressure in each eye to test for glaucoma, a disease that can lead to blindness
- ECG (geriatric screen)—An electrocardiogram assesses the electrical activity of the heart and includes a cardiology consultation. It will check for any rate or rhythm disturbances with your pet’s heart.
- Blood pressure—Tests for hypertension, a disease that can lead to problems such as heart disease, kidney disease, and blindness
- Radiology—X-rays of the chest or abdomen plus radiologist’s consultation
- Nutritional counseling—Assessing your pet’s dietary needs as he or she ages
- Fecal exam—Checks for the presence of intestinal parasites, such as worms and protozoa
- Urinalysis—Assesses the function and health of the kidneys and urinary bladder
Of course, pets don’t live forever and we know how difficult end-of-life decisions are when you have a beloved pet. We offer thoughtful and compassionate counseling to all of our families of senior and seriously ill pets. We understand that support doesn’t always come from within a whole family, which can make these decisions especially painful and emotional. Our entire staff is sensitive to these issues and will reach out to you with kindness and understanding as you tread this difficult territory at the end of your pet’s life. We encourage you to visit our pet loss library for additional information and support at any hour.
Senior pets often benefit from early detection of problems. Be sure to contact us and schedule your senior pet’s next appointment today.
“I love this place. Both of my dogs go here. The staff is always very nice! The doctors are amazing and take the time to explain everything to you about your pet.
“The staff at Bellerose has treated our family’s pets continuously since 1963. I cannot say enough about the excellent care that our pets have received from their professional, caring staff. They have treated 2 dogs and 7 cats during the last 49 years for everything.
“COMPASSIONATE STAFF.I was fairly charged for all the loving care. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
“friendly atmosphere, easy to get to location and a great staff—been going here for years and highly recommend it! The best decision I ever made! Unquestionably one of the best veterinary practices in the world!All of the vets here are fantastic.
“Loretta was a very special dog who had a good life with us and we had a good life too. My husband and I believe that your hospital and caring staff made her quality of life exceptional. Thank you all.
“ I would also like to take this opportunity to tell all of you how grateful I am for your many years of dedicated medical care to my beloved Spunky. It’s been 16 years, 5 months, and 7 days of wonderful service and loving concern and I will always love you for it!
Very Sincerely Spunky’s Mom
“We need you to know we will always be grateful you helped give our Fredo and us so many happy years together.
Many, many thanks,
Carol and Maria
“I wanted to thank you for everything that you did for my “baby”. You are such a great vet and I will be forever grateful for everything you do for me and MJ.
“We loved Missie very much as she loved us for ten years. She was a member of our family. We needed the little time left to us to talk to her, pet her, comfort her and express our love for her.
“We would like to take the opportunity to say how we are pleased at the service Sammy receives at your facility. Especially for Dr Mariliz Hernandez, she is a great asset to your hospital. We appreciate the care and understanding Dr Hernandez shows Sammy at the time of his exam.
Sal and Gloria Carbone
“Because of people like you...thank you for all you do.
Without the entire Staff, I would not have had Barney for as long as I did. You gave him all of your experience and love, everytime he needed you all.
I cannot express my thank you’s enough
“We continue to offer our patients all of the advantages and resources of a large teaching hospital with the individualized care and compassion of a progressive family practice.