One of the hardest parts of being a dog mom is watching your dog age. And once they hit a certain age, it happens so fast.

As a dog mom, it’s essential to ensure that your furry best friend stays healthy and happy for as long as possible. Here are five ways to help keep your dog in tip-top shape as they get older:

1. Regular Exercise

Regularly exercising your dog is crucial for maintaining your dog’s physical and mental well-being. This can include anything from walks, runs, fetch, taking them to a dog park or playtime in the backyard can help keep your dog’s muscles and joints strong and also help prevent obesity.

2. Balanced Diet

As your dog ages, their diet becomes more important than ever. It’s easy for dogs to gain weight as they age because they are less mobile than they were in their younger years and aren’t burning as many calories. Feeding your dog a balanced and nutritious diet is essential for maintaining their overall health. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the best diet for your dog’s specific needs and make sure to avoid table scraps and high-fat treats.

3. Preventative Care

As your dog gets older, it would be a good idea to start scheduling more regular check-ups with your vet. Regular check-ups and vaccinations are important to prevent illnesses and detect any potential health issues early on. Your veterinarian will be able to guide you on how often your dog should be seen and will help you take the best care of them as they age.

4. Dental Care

Just like humans, dogs need to take care of their teeth to maintain good oral health. Regular teeth brushing, dental chews, and dental treats can help keep your dog’s teeth clean and prevent tartar build-up. This can help your dog avoid potential gum diseases that can be harmful and painful to them.

5. Mental Stimulation

Keeping your dog mentally stimulated can help prevent boredom and destructive behavior. Provide your dog with interactive toys and puzzles, and schedule regular training sessions to keep their minds active.

By following these simple steps, you can your dog stay happy and healthy for many years to come. Keeping up with these tips will help not only your dog, but you as well because you may be able to prevent diseases, obesity or other health issues that can become costly veterinarian visits. Just as humans age, dogs age too and need all the proper care (that’s where you come in!) to avoid major health issues and age gracefully.