Frequently Asked Questions about Senior Pets

At what age is my pet considered a senior?

7 and older

My senior dog/cat seems really disoriented and forgetful. Can dogs/cats get senile?

Yes, unfortunately they can. Senility can be treated with medication, antioxidant supplements, and special food (Hill’s b/d ). Please book an appointment with a veterinarian to discuss treatment options that can improve your senile pets’ life.

What are some things I can do to help my senior pet age well?

  1. Feed your pet a good quality senior pet food with joint supplements and antioxidants.
  2. Keep your pet at an optimum weight – extra weight puts extra pressure on the joints.
  3. Take your pet to the vet at least once a year. Pets age much faster than people. Not taking your pet to the vet is like a person not going to the doctor for seven years.

My senior cat is still moving around and does not cry. That means that it doesn’t have painful arthritis, right?

Not necessarily, cats can be very quiet about their painful arthritis. Watch for inability to jump as high as before, reluctance to jump, decreased grooming, grumpiness, avoidance of petting/stroking/brushing, hiding, and increased or decreased sleep. If your cat is showing these signs, anti-inflammatory painkillers are available to help get it back to its nimble, happy self.

How do I decide when it’s time to put my senior pet down?

Monitor your pet’s quality of life: Hurt, Hunger, Hydration, Hygiene, Happiness, Mobility, and More Good Days than Bad. You can also book an appointment with a veterinarian to discuss your pet’s condition.

My senior pet has bad teeth. Will it die if it gets put under anesthetic for a dental procedure?

“As with humans, old age isn’t a disease and when using the proper anesthetic dosages and protocols, anesthesia is quite safe for an older pet — just as it’s safe for an older person.” For more info, visit:


Written by Morinville Veterinary Clinic