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How to Spoil a Senior Dog During the Holidays

By Randi Morse

I like to say that I live in a household of geriatric pets. Just five years ago we had four cats and three dogs. We now have three cats and one dog. All of our animals have lived long, healthy lives but we now find ourselves surrounded by elderly four-legged family members. While we adore our senior dog, a 12-year old malamute named Takaani, it's a lot trickier to spoil a senior dog during the holiday season than it is a young one. Senior dogs have different needs, but it's important that they feel special during the holidays, even if they don't quite understand what it's all about. Here are some simple, healthy ways to spoil your senior citizen canine this holiday season.

Bone Broth

What's one thing you likely have tons of during the holiday season? Kitchen scraps. No matter whether you're cooking a turkey or ham dinner to serve your family, you likely have tons of kitchen scraps that you simply compost or throw away. Instead of doing that, make some bone broth. Bone broth is extremely healthy for dogs and humans; even though it's time-consuming, it's really easy to make. While there are tons of great bone broth recipes online, this is the bone broth recipe that I have used and can recommend. The big problem with bone broth is that it takes forever to cook. I like to speed it up using a pressure cooker, taking it from a 24-hour cook to a 2-hour cook! Here's a pressure cooker bone broth recipe that is my go-to now that I have a pressure cooker. Add some bone broth to your senior dog's regular chow and watch their eyes light up!

A New Bed

Did you know that there are orthopedic beds available for dogs? This holiday season, spoil your older dog with a new, orthopedic bed. Make sure you get one that is sized correctly for your dog, and if you can find one that has a removable cover you'll have a much easier time keeping it clean. If you really want to spoil your dog over the holidays, you can do as we did and get two beds. We have one in the living room and one in our bedroom so that Takaani can rest comfortably near us.

Time With You

When it comes down to it, spending time with you is all your senior citizen pet wants. I read something once that stuck with me: a dog is a small part of our lives, but we are their whole life. All they want is time with their beloved owner, so simply sitting on the floor and spending time loving on your older canine will likely be a huge holiday treat.

And if you don't know by now, you're probably benefiting from that relationship too.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Richardson, Tex.

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