585 Walnut Ave, Carpinteria, CA 93013 | (805) 684-3617

Senior Care for Older Pets

Carpinteria Senior Care Dog Cat Pet Montecito

We love our older patients!

As our loyal pet companions age, changes to their health occur, which may require adjustments in diet, activity level, and medical care. We recommend an exam every six months in our senior pets. A thorough patient history and comprehensive physical exam can help us to make tailored recommendations to improve your pet's quality of life. 

 In addition to a physical exam, we offer various diagnostic tests in order to establish a baseline for normal health or to detect the onset of disease. We recommend yearly lab work screening for all of our senior pets. Early detection and monitoring is key in order to slow down disease progression and keep your pet as comfortable as possible, adding healthy years to your pet’s life.  

Is your pet a senior?

If your pet is 8 years old or older, we consider them a senior. Large breed dogs such as a Great Dane, may even be considered a senior at the age of 6. Your pet may appear healthy well into his or her senior years; however, many problems common to older pets (such as kidney disease, liver disease, heart failure, thyroid disease) may not present any symptoms until your pet is seriously ill. A comprehensive senior exam can help your veterinarian identify health problems early enough where they can institute preventative healthcare measures. 

Our senior pet exam may include:

  • Senior lab work to include complete blood count, chemistry, urinalysis, thyroid testing, and parasite screening (FELV/FIV testing for felines)
  • Dental and oral examination
  • Hearing and eye exam
  • Blood pressure measurement
  • Diet and nutritional assessment 
  • Orthopedic examination
  • Exercise and weight management
  • Pain management plan for patients with chronic problems such as arthritis
  • X-rays
  • Ultrasound
  • Discussion of supplements and nutraceuticals

Our older companions may experience sudden or slow and gradual changes in their health. If your pet is showing any change or warning signs of disease, schedule an appointment and provide your veterinarian with a list of the changes you have observed.

Things to look out for:

  • Coughing
  • Labored breathing
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Changes in appetite
  • Recurrent vomiting or diarrhea
  • Sudden weight loss or gain
  • Increase in drinking and urination
  • Trouble rising, stiffness, or issues with mobility
  • Limping
  • Lumps or bumps
  • Bad breath or drooling
  • Behavioral changes such as confusion, aggression, changes in personality
  • Inappropriate urination or defecation

Any of these sound familiar? If so call us to schedule an appointment!

If your pet requires more complex medical intervention, we are experienced in treating a variety of geriatric concerns common to aging pets such as cancer, kidney failure, diabetes, arthritis, pain management, and mobility limitations. We can also help with hospice or palliative care or helping you or your family in dealing with euthanasia and end-of-life issues. 

We are committed to offering your aging animal companion quality healthcare for many years to come. Please call our office today to schedule an appointment. 

For more information on senior care for your pet:


We have recently adopted a puppy named Rollo and have been bringing him in to see Dr. Putnam. All of the staff has been nothing but friendly and informative. Dr. Putnam was extremely kind and took care of Rollo's skin problems and suggested a puppy school for him since he's a pitbull. Rollo has spent some days boarding there and loves his days with the other puppies. Overall we couldn't imagine a better place for our puppy and we feel very confident that Rollo is getting the best pet health care for very affordable prices.
Micah P.

Carpinteria Veterinary Hospital