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How to Modify Your Home for Senior Dogs

Everyone wants to talk about puppies, but senior dogs require special attention, too. Here are simple ways to make your pup more comfortable at home.

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Photo: Yobab

Orthopedic Support

Just like humans, senior dogs can suffer from joint pain. Give them extra support at night with an orthopedic bed. Memory foam molds and contours to the body, giving dogs extra cushion for hips and legs.

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Photo: KatarzynaBialasiewicz

Open Layout

An open layout and clear pathways are best for seniors with cataracts and poor vision. But if your dog goes blind, don't shift furniture around too much. "They memorize the layout of the house," said veterinarian Dr. Sarah Gilliam. "Sometimes people don't realize that their pets have decreased vision until their dog bumps into things. So, I tell people don't change."

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Photo: Igor Sinkov

Traction Help

While easy to clean for humans, hardwood is difficult for senior dogs. Dr. Gilliam recommends laying down rugs in common pathways to give pups traction and mobility help on slick flooring. Yoga mats work, too.

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Photo: PetSafe

Furniture Protection

Senior dogs, especially small breeds, can run into incontinence issues that make lounging on furniture problematic. Furniture pads such as PetSafe's Bolster Protector give pets an area to snuggle while protecting the entire piece from accidents. Dr. Gilliam recommends having lots of puppy pads around and making sure dogs have plenty of chances to go outside and potty. "Incontinence is usually a sign of a medical issue," she said. "So make sure you get it checked out by your vet."

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