Feed the aging dog
Dogs live longer than ever and it is not rare for a dog to live up to 15 years and still be in relatively good health! And proper nutrition is of great importance to dogs, just as it is to us. Good nutrition helps to postpone general weakening and chronic diseases, and can help the body to better handle diseases that are already present.
The aging process in dogs is similar to what happens to us humans as we age, a complex picture of biological processes that result in physical and physiological changes, metabolic changes and behavioral changes. In other words, a gradual weakening of vital body functions.
When is the dog old?
It has become common to define a dog as aging when it passes 7-8 years of age, but this is individual and depends on several factors such as breed and breed size. In general, small breeds show signs of aging later than large breeds.
Vital body functions weaken with ageing
Common symptoms of aging are often seen in the reduction of skeletal, bone and joint functionality. The dog may show less desire for activity or resist jumping out or into the car. Other symptoms can come from the digestive system as the ability to digest and absorb nutrients is impaired. The result can be weight loss or weight gain. Reduced functionality in the digestive system can result in less energy and reduced vitality, but we also know that the body’s immune system becomes weaker the older the dog gets and it becomes more exposed to allergies and disease. It is also important to remember that the brain’s ability to utilize nutrients also weakens, impaired brain function, which can lead to behavioral changes in the dog. It is therefore important to choose the right type of dog food, ration the feed correctly and at the same time ensure enough exercise.
What is important to remember when feeding an aging dog?
Nutrition for older pets must support the vital functions such as the immune system and digestive system, must support cognitive function and help prevent various types of health problems. The feed must be composed of the right amount of protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. and provides the right energy for optimal hold. It can also be beneficial that the feed offers functional ingredients that support the vital processes.To compensate for a reduced ability to digest, senior dogs require an adequate intake of high-quality easily digestible protein. Protein sources with particularly high digestibility include hydrolysed proteins (from fish or chicken).
Appetitt Senior is formulated and balanced to meet the needs of senior dogs. The ageing process in dogs varies and the transition to a senior food must be assessed individually for each dog. The food has a moderate protein content.
Carnitine contributes to energy and fat metabolism and may reduce the risk of obesity. Psyllium husk from psyllium seeds is high in fermentable and water-soluble fibres and might contribute to good gastrointestinal function. Psyllium has very good water binding ability and other swelling properties. It might thus also contribute to increased satiety.