According to The Zebra, 85 million American households own a pet, of which approximately 48 million have a dog.
If your dog has been around you for a few years, he is a special member of the family. You would want to ensure he stays healthy for many more years. One way to help him achieve this goal is by giving him the right medications at the right time.
Here are five medications that every older dog should have periodically:
Heartworms are parasites in your dog’s heart and lungs. They’re transmitted by mosquitoes and spread through the bloodstream. Your dog can become infected if he or she is bitten by an infected mosquito or if another animal in your home becomes infected and transmits it to them.
Heartworm disease can be fatal if left untreated, so it’s important to take the necessary precautions to protect your pet against infection. Most veterinarians recommend administering monthly heartworm prevention medication to prevent your dog from getting the disease.
The most popular heartworm preventive medication that you could give your dog is Heartgard Plus chewable, which is easily available at any local pharmacy or on an online store like PetCareRx.
Flea and Tick Medication
Your dog might have a flea and tick problem. If you’re not sure, check your dog’s skin for evidence of ticks or fleas. If they have either, talk to your veterinarian about the best way to get rid of them. Both parasites can cause serious health issues in dogs, though tick-borne diseases are more common in certain regions than others.
You can use oral or topical medication for both fleas and ticks on an ongoing basis to keep them at bay. This is especially important if there are any other pets in your home or outdoors that could pass the pests along to each other.
According to Yahoo! Finance, the global market for pet care medications like flea and tick, and heartworm products are expected to rise from USD 2.3 billion in 2021 to USD 3.68 billion in 2026, at a compound annual growth rate of 9.4% with an increase in the rate of pet adoption and increasing awareness about these diseases.
Glucosamine helps keep joints healthy and mobile, which is especially important for older dogs. As your dog ages, his or her bones become more brittle from a decrease in cartilage production. Adding glucosamine to their diet can help reduce this bone loss by improving the strength of their connective tissues.
Glucosamine is a popular supplement for humans as well. Still, most human glucosamine products contain ingredients that aren’t safe for dogs, even though some companies claim otherwise. Be sure to check the label of any dog-safe glucosamine product before purchasing it.
Eye drops are another must-have for your dog. As people age, their eyesight can become blurry or experience dryness and inflammation. Dog eyes have similar issues that can be helped by eye drops.
A common cause of eye problems in older dogs is cataracts, which cause cloudy spots in the lens of their eyes that distorts images seen through them. There are several different types of cataracts, but all need to be treated with surgery as soon as possible. If untreated, they will lead to blindness later on down the line.
Glaucoma is another condition that affects older dogs’ vision. It’s caused by increased pressure inside the eyeball due to fluid buildup within it. This pressure leads to damage to nerves behind your pet’s retina, leading them to lose sight in one or both eyes over time if left untreated.
Fortunately, there are medications available over-the-counter without needing a prescription from a vet first. So make sure you keep them handy just in case he ever needs any help keeping his vision sharp.
Ear drops are a good way to keep your dog’s ears clean, which helps prevent ear infections. According to the American Kennel Club, an estimated 20% of dogs suffer from some form of ear disease, which can affect one or both of their ears.
Make sure you apply the ear drops to the outer part of their ears but not the inside. You should only need to apply them once or twice a week, depending on how often your vet recommends. If your dog is uncomfortable with having drops put in their ears, try holding a treat up over their head, so they have to look up at it rather than down at you.
If this doesn’t work, ask your veterinarian for advice on how best to administer these medications without causing too much stress for yourself or your pet.
We hope this article has given you a better understanding of the importance of preventive care for your senior dog. The five medications we covered are among the most common ones prescribed by vets, but there are many more medications available if your vet recommends them.
As always, talk to your vet about what’s best for your pet.