An older dog laying on the couch

5 Signs That Your Dog Is Getting Older

By Christian Velitchkov

An older dog laying on the couch

Every dog ages in their own unique way. Although the breed of your dog and other circumstances play a part in how rapidly they age, there are some commonalities across all dogs that indicate that your pet is getting older. Being aware of the symptoms of old age will assist you in caring for your dog as they enter their golden years.

The Top 5 Signs That Your Dog Is Getting Old: Aging Dog Symptoms

  1. Weight Gain

You may have observed that as dogs age, they tend to become a little chunkier. You can attribute this to a number of factors, including: 

  • With less exercise and the same amount of food, your dog will end up gaining weight. If you notice that your dog doesn't want to go on walks or engage in intense play, it's time to make dietary changes. If you're unsure about the proper proportions for your dog, you should seek advice from your veterinarian.
  • Their metabolism has slowed. Many senior dogs have slower metabolisms, and there is nothing that can be done to enhance or treat this, so the best solution is to feed your dog fewer servings. A sluggish metabolism is nothing to be concerned about; it is simply something you must accept.
  • They have a medical condition. If your dog starts gaining weight as they get older, it's crucial to have them checked by a veterinarian to ensure there aren't any medical issues to blame. A thyroid problem, which may be treated with the correct medicine, is a common cause of weight gain.

Related: Dog Weight Loss Guidelines

2. Loss of Senses

As a dog gets older, their senses of smell, hearing, and sight sometimes deteriorate. It's crucial to pay attention to the major indicators in each sense because some of them can be treated. While certain illnesses are incurable, you can still work with your dog to make them as comfortable as possible.

Eyesight loss or deterioration is fairly common in senior dogs, so keep an eye out for the following symptoms:

  • Eyes that are cloudy. While foggy eyes may not always signal that your dog is blind, they can signify cataracts or another eye problem. It's critical to have your dog's hazy eyes examined by a veterinarian to determine the best course of action.
  • Clumsiness. If you notice that your pet suddenly starts bumping into things, it's possible that they're losing their vision. As your dog becomes blind, there are many fantastic ways to make them feel more at ease in your house. In several shops, you can find some interesting innovations, such as a blind dog halo. This is a lightweight tubing that forms a halo around your dog's head to protect them from injury when they bump into things. It's also a good idea not to move any furniture because your dog will quickly learn the layout of the house.
An older dog with cloudy eyes

Related: Discharge From Your Dog's Eyes: What You Need To Know

3. Incontinence

Potty mishaps are becoming increasingly common among senior dogs. It becomes much more difficult for dogs to control their bladders as they get older. It is critical to recognize that your dog's bladder simply cannot keep its contents any longer and that they should not be reprimanded if they urinate in the house. Incontinence is a natural component of aging in dogs.

This may require allowing them to go outside more regularly to relieve themselves. Investing in a diaper for your dog is another way that you can prevent mishaps. There are many different types of pet diapers available, so you can pick the right size and design for your pet. They're made to be comfortable to wear all day and will assist keep your home clean during this stage of your pet's life.

Related: Dog Diarrhea: Treatments & Causes

4. Bad Breath

As your dog gets older, his teeth and gums may begin to decay, resulting in bad breath. Swelling of the gums and a loss of appetite are further symptoms and signs of tooth decay. If you detect these symptoms in your elderly dog, make an appointment with your veterinarian to address the problem and ensure that your dog is as comfortable as possible. Dental chew sticks or regular brushing are two strategies to keep your dog's teeth clean on a regular basis.

5. Moving Slowly

Old age causes dogs to slow down, just like it does with humans. Your dog might start taking longer to get up, walk, eat, and do other things. Even if your older pet isn't as active as they once were, it's still necessary to play with them, walk with them, and, of course, adore them.

Any sign of sluggishness should always be followed up with a visit to your veterinarian. If your dog's sluggishness is due to joint or muscular pain, your veterinarian can help your dog feel better. Some methods of keeping your elderly dog entertained and active include:

  • Going for short walks
  • Swimming
  • Hiding treats around the house for them to find
  • Getting your older dog puzzle toys to keep their mind active
  • Playing fetch over a short distance

While it's difficult to watch your pet age, it's crucial to recognize the symptoms of aging. Acknowledging their age will assist you in improving their quality of life. It's essential that you make adjustments to account for the changes their bodies are undergoing. Even though you can't stop them from getting older, you can be their greatest friend and give them the love and care they need.

How Can You Help Your Dog That's Getting Older?

A happy, active older dog


If you see any of these changes, the most important thing you can do is contact your veterinarian. The veterinarian can diagnose and treat any underlying medical issues. They can also assist you in making decisions about your dog's future care, such as dietary and exercise adjustments, as well as improvements you can make around the house or in the daily routine.

Our dogs provide us with many years of love and loyalty, so it's only natural that we want to make their senior years as pleasant as possible. Aging is a natural part of life, and with a little caution and attention to your dog's health, these years can be truly "golden."

Did you know that CBD dog treats and CBD oil can help relieve your dog's symptoms of aging, giving them more comfort as they get older? Visit our shop at Dope Dog, and learn how we can help your aging pet!

Related: Dog Breeds That Live the Longest