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4 Things To Expect As Your Pet’s Life Comes to an End

Pets often play a valuable role in family life. They are considered members of the family by many owners, and we share the ups and downs of their lives.

Like people, as they get older, it is important to adjust your expectations about what your pet is able to do.

Although each animal is different, like humans, pets sometimes demonstrate similar behavioral changes that alert us to the fact that their life is winding down.

4 Things To Expect As Your Pet’s Life Comes to an End

Lifestyle Needs May Change

Although your dog may love physical activity and have a playful spirit, aging or health issues may impact the way your pet interacts with you or other members of the family.

Your pet may spend more time resting or napping.

Alternately, a quiet dog could become more restless and want to exercise more often.

A different pet food might be needed, and a softer bed may help to make your pet more comfortable when dealing with bodily aches and pains.

Senior Dachshund sleeping on a bed covered with a blanket

Personality Shifts Could Occur

Like any older person or someone with a serious health condition, your dog’s personality could become more mellow, or they might become more anxious and eager for affection.

Be ready to give your pet extra attention and reassurance if you notice changes like these.

A dog whose life is winding down might even seem somewhat depressed or sad.

Be aware that these changes are likely natural.

The veterinarian may be able to provide advice or medication that can help.

Senior black dog with gray muzzle

Your Relationship Might Need to be Adjusted

If your pet’s health is deteriorating, you will want to keep a close eye on his condition.

This could mean getting up at night to check your pet and to provide extra support through affection, observation, or medication.

You may need to become more of a caregiver than a companion to your pet.

Sad senior pug

Health Concerns May Increase

Although some pets may just naturally get older and prepare to pass away naturally, some might develop health issues that will require extra vigilance and support.

Your dog may begin to whine due to pain or anxiety.

Toileting issues may develop.

Talk to the veterinarian about changes like these and the best way to help your dog work through this stage of life.

You should also ask the vet about when to schedule a euthanasia appointment depending on your pet’s symptoms and condition.

There are some conditions where a vet will recommend euthanasia when your pet is in pain more frequently than not.

Old dog sleeping

Losing a pet to old age or illness is never easy.

But being prepared and doing your best can make the situation easier on everyone.

Talk to the vet about what to expect and how to provide the support your beloved pet needs.

Michael Coovert

Wednesday 13th of October 2021

This is such a hard, difficult time as a pet owner. When both of my dogs passed, it just about killed me.

Dorothy Boucher

Tuesday 12th of October 2021

Thank you for sharing this, this past summer I lost a pet, I didn't want to but I had no choice to have her put to sleep. I didn't want to see her suffer any more. @tisonlyme143


Friday 8th of October 2021

Losing a family pet is heartbreaking. Thanks for sharing this informative article.

Cindy Merrill

Thursday 7th of October 2021

Very informative. My cat Fred is 14 and seems to be sleeping more than normal. Is that one of the signs?

Debbie P

Wednesday 6th of October 2021

Thanks for this important article.

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