Senior Pets

How can I enjoy the company of my older pet for longer?

It is a sad fact that pets age much more rapidly than their owners. Each year represents 5 to 10% of an animal's lifespan. You may well have heard the saying that one year of a dog's life is equal to seven human years. The truth is a little more complicated, as you will see from the age chart below.

Age chart

These figures are based on our extensive database of pet information over the last twenty five years and may differ slightly from other similar charts.

After Eights Programme

The Orchard senior care programme is designed to proactively and regularly check for the health problems of aging pets. The object of the programme is to increase longevity, maintain health, and preserve the quality of life of your pet.

From the age of eight we recommend that all dogs and cats should be examined every six months. One of these checks is normally with the vet at the annual booster vaccination but can also be done on a separate occasion. The other visit is an in-depth senior health assessment by a member of the veterinary team, including a range of health screening tests. Without appropriate screening, we would not be able to diagnose serious problems like diabetes, liver or kidney disease, bladder problems, or heart disease.

In most cases the body has reserve capacity for when an organ becomes diseased, allowing the primary stages to be masked. In fact many of the problems of aging are in advanced stages before outward clinical signs can be observed. For instance it is only when 75% of functional kidney tissue is destroyed that the symptoms of kidney failure is first seen. Health screens, such as blood, urine and blood pressure tests, help us to identify conditions that are not outwardly obvious.

If our examinations or tests reveal any abnormalities we will discuss these with you and recommend any further course of action that may be needed.

If your pet is over eight years and has not been to the Vets for six months, contact us now for an appointment.