Easing Your Dogs Chronic Pain
Although arthritis is common among dogs and can cause them pain, the variety of effective treatments gives us hope that they will be able to jump back up on the couch again, whether you want them there or not. As we mentioned above, CBD oil for dogs is an all-natural remedy that may reduce your dogs arthritic pain. Its becoming a popular treatment for a variety of conditions, including chronic pain, joint inflammation, anxiety, digestive issues, and more. Let your vet know if you plan to use CBD to complement your dogs other arthritis treatments.
Recognizing Arthritis In Senior Dogs
As arthritis progresses, some older dogs will have a harder time standing up from a lying position or jumping up into the car or onto the bed. Others may look stiff, act sore, or begin limping when they walk.
It can be easy to attribute the signs of arthritis to age-related slowing down and assume this is normal behavior for a senior dog. However, many times this isnt the case.
If your dog is in the golden yearsor closethere are simple steps you can take at home to give the gifts of mobility, comfort, and more good days. However, before you break out your DIY building skills, shop online, or implement any of the other tips I am about to share with you, first please make an appointment with your dogs veterinarian.
Provide A Dog Bed In Every Room Where Family Spends Time
Some dogs have one dog bed and it may not necessarily be available to the dog until bed time. This is fine with young dogs, but older, arthritic dogs need something to cushion their protruding joints wherever they spend time with humans.
If your arthritic dog is laying on a cold, wood floor of a game room while the kids play for hours at a time, your dog will thank you for placing a dog bed in the game room.
Now lets move on to products that can be added as budget permits.
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Are Certain Dog Breeds More Susceptible To Developing Arthritis
We would not say a certain type of breed is predisposed to developing arthritis but rather that the disease is typically seen in large breed dogs. Overweight animals proportionately carry more weight on the joints, leading to an increased chance of localised inflammation and irritation to the joints. This is not to say that your Pug doesnât have arthritis, its simply less common in smaller dog breeds so regardless of the breed itâs important to maintain a healthy weight.
What Is Canine Osteoarthritis
According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, canine osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease, is characterized by the wearing away of joint cartilage , the buildup of fluid within the joint, and the formation of new bone around the joint. All of this results in pain and decreased joint mobility and function.
While the cause of osteoarthritis in dogs isn’t always known, there are several things that might be to blame. These causes could include issues like injury, infection, the animal’s immune system, obesity, poor nutrition, and abnormally formed joints .
Osteoarthritis in dogs is quite common. The American College of Veterinary Surgeons says it affects approximately a quarter of dogs and can occur in dogs of all ages. While any dog can develop arthritis, large dog breeds are more prone to the disease. Arthritis is also progressive, meaning it will get worse with time if not treated.
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Arthritis In Dogs 7 Common Signs Symptoms & Treatment Options
Every dog parent should have canine arthritis on their radar.
Joint disease is one of the most common medical complications seen in senior furry friends, with osteoarthritis being one of the leading causes of joint pain.
While arthritis may not be life threatening in itself, it can deeply impact a dogs quality of life as they age.
So what is canine arthritis, and how can you best support your dog with this condition?
Dog Foods That Are Best For Joint Health
Joint health problems are common among dogs, especially for older dogs. Ailed joints can lead to mobility problems which can cause pain and discomfort.
The best food for joints in dogs are those that have glucosamine, chondroitin, Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids, antioxidants and vitamins.
There are lots of dog foods that are specially made for joint health, so if you have an arthritic dog it may be a good option. These help the dogs cartilage stay healthy, which is important because it reduces the risk of canine arthritis or other joint problems later on in life.
When our Ginger was getting older, we started giving her Purina ProPlan Focus because it has glucosamine and Omega-3.
We also made sure to add fish oil to her meals, as well as treating her to a glucosamine supplement daily to keep our senior dog moving with as healthy joints as possible. Joint supplements plus regular exercise kept her joints nice and healthy until she was 15 years old!
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Control Your Dog’s Pain
“Pain control is the foundation,” Login explains. That’s because if your dog hurts, he’s probably not going to want to exercise. And if your dog won’t exercise, it becomes more difficult to control her weight.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as carprofen are the most common arthritis medicines for dogs, Login says. But if your dog doesn’t tolerate these drugs well, your veterinarian may recommend some other options to try.
You aren’t limited to pharmaceuticals when it comes to pain control, however. Talk to your veterinarian about your options, and whether holistic veterinary careincluding treatments like acupuncture, laser therapy, massage therapy, physical therapy, aqua therapy, and stem cell therapymight help. Your dog could also be a candidate for supplements like omega-3-fatty acids, glucosamine, and chondroitin.
Are There Supplements That Help To Prevent Arthritis In Dogs
The prescription diets such as Hills, JD, Royal Canin Mobility are all specifically formulated and fortified with omega fatty acids, fish oils, glucosamine and supplements that protect the joints. While there are numerous homeopathic and home remedies out there, there is no
conclusive evidence that ingredients such as turmeric are in fact effective.
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Does Arthritis In Dogs Go Away
No, arthritis in dogs doesnt go away. Unfortunately, arthritis in dogs treatment as the condition cant be cured only managed. This is because damage to joint cartilage tissue is rarely reversible.
On a positive note, you can help your arthritic dog live a long, happy life with the right treatments. Good arthritis in dogs treatment aims to reduce arthritis pain and prevent further damage to your dogs joints.
How Can I Help A Dog With Arthritis At Home
Medical advice from your veterinarian is invaluable when you are trying to manage your dogs arthritis pain. However, arthritis treatments like physical therapy and acupuncture are usually performed at your vets office, so you may be wondering how to help a dog with arthritis at home.
To address this concern, I want to share with you eight at-home arthritis management tips that can make a huge difference for your senior dog.
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Consult Your Vet For Effective Treatments
Arthritis can be treated with anti-inflammatory medication, dietary supplements and chondroprotective agents. Your vet may prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to decrease inflammation and pain. Chondroprotective agents such as Cartrophen help the body repair cartilage and stimulate its function. Speak to your vet about whether these treatments are right for your dog.
Give Your Dog A Daily Massage
Massage therapy is great for arthritis and some pet boutiques charge big money for a dog massage. You can do this for free! Use long gentle strokes and always push blood toward your dogs heart. Massage gets blood flowing to the arthritic area and can reduce pain and stiffness for several hours.
You can actually do this massage in combination with the next suggestion which is heat therapy.
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How Can It Be Treated
There is no cure for arthritis, but the pain can often be managed with anti-inflammatories and/or painkillers. Relieving pain improves mobility which helps to maintain supporting muscle mass. Weight control is vital in managing symptoms and supplements such as YuMove are said to reduce stiffness, promote better joint health and increase mobility. But dogs with arthritis are likely to need medication your vet will be able to advise on this. Massage, physiotherapy and hydrotherapy may also help. In some cases, surgery may be advised but its unlikely that surgery will restore perfect joint function for life. New therapies, such as stem cell therapy, are also becoming more available for dogs and some seem to yield promising results.
How To Manage / Treat Arthritis In Dogs
One of the most important aspects of managing any animal with arthritis is to make sure that their pain is carefully managed and that they continue to live a good quality life.
Treatment may include daily anti-inflammatory medication to reduce the inflammation around the joint in conjunction with a weight management plan to reduce any pressure in the affected joints. A full blood test is conducted before starting any pain relief medication
Anti-inflammatory or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs do have side effects and your veterinarian will need to keep a close check on your dogâs kidney and liver function to appropriately manage the best dosage, based on the dogâs health history. The other option in terms of medication is a disease modifying osteoarthritis drug called Zydax, this disease modifying medication is used to improve and protect the quality of the cartilage, widely referred to as a Chrondro protective drug that improves blood circulation and supports biosynthetic function of chondrocytes. An injectable course of Zydax is typically administered over four doses, one week apart and repeated once every six months.
Joint Supplement- Chrondroitin Sulfate, glucosamine Sulfate, Omega-3 -fatty- acid supplementation are commonly used supplements. There are a range of brands out there including Antinol, Glyde and 4 Cyte.
If you notice any signs of symptoms that indicate your dog may be suffering from arthritis, call us on at Port Road Vet to see how we can help.
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How Much Does It Cost To Treat Arthritis In Dogs
The cost of arthritis in dogs treatment depends on the case. Treating a dog with light signs and symptoms can cost as low as $25 a month for pain medication and joint supplements.
On the other hand, a dog with severe arthritis may require up to $5000 for a surgical operation and post-operative care. These costs may not be feasible for dog parents unless they have a good pet health insurance plan.
The One Vet insurance plan is the ideal plan for any dog parent. For less than $1 a day, you can get access to a licensed vet, $3000 per year for vet bills, and cover for all pre-existing conditions. The insurance makes arthritis in dogs treatment accessible to all pet owners.
Treating Arthritis In An Older Dog
You can find many more of our articles related to arthritis, chronic pain and mobility issues in older dogs here.
The first perceptible sign of aging that most owners notice with their dog is arthritis. This can begin as early as 5 or 6 years of age in giant breeds, and occurs later in life in small and toy breeds. You might notice slowness in getting up, stiffness, and even limping for the first few steps in the morning or after a long nap. Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years, but retain their natural instinct from their wilder days to hide weakness therefore they will initially hide their pain. However, dogs communicate pain through body language, so it is important to learn this language, especially with senior dogs. Other signs of pain possibly related to arthritis are licking or chewing a joint, slowness to climb stairs or jump on furniture, changes in gait, changes in appetite and/or sleep, and excessive panting unrelated to hot weather. Dogs in severe pain can also exhibit irritability or even aggression. Any sudden change in your dogs personality can mean she is in pain. If your dog is showing any of these symptoms, it important to have your dog checked by a veterinarian, especially if these symptoms appear suddenly, or if the dog is younger than average, to rule out injury or skeletal issues.
Some veterinarians also offer stem cell therapy as an option.
When To Contact Your Vet
Symptoms of arthritis often develop slowly which means it can be difficult to know when to seek help. Get in touch with your vet if you notice any of the symptoms listed above.
Older dogs benefit from regular check-ups so your vet can pick up any early signs of arthritis.
You know your dog best. If you are still concerned, contact your vet.
Dogs At Risk For Arthritis
Any dog can develop arthritis, but it is more common in older dogs and large breeds, such as German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, and Great Danes. It can also occur more often in breeds with hereditary conditions linked to arthritis. For instance, Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers tend to have luxating patella, and Bulldogs, Mastiffs, Saint Bernards, and Labrador Retrievers are prone to hip dysplasia.
Limit Mobility Commands To Only When Necessary
Surely your dog has earned a lifetime supply of treats simply because theyre awesome. Now that your dog has arthritis and youre trying to treat the condition at home, its a good time to stop insisting that your dog sit, lay down shake paws etc, in order to receive a treat.
If you still want your dog to perform for treats, you could ask for a kiss , hug or a bark or hide them in places that are easy to find and access.
Make Your Dog Comfortable
You must take some extra care to make your dog comfortable. As much as possible, keep your dog warm and dry. Cold and damp conditions can worsen the pain.
Heat can help soothe painful joints, so putting a heating pad on the achy joints for 10 minutes can help a lot.
Also, when your dog sleeps, put a warm blanket over his body. Consider investing in a padded dog bed or look for store-bought heating options available for pets.
- Take your dog for regular checkups so your veterinarian can monitor the arthritis and make necessary adjustments to the treatment plan.
- Disease-modifying osteoarthritis drugs can help a lot in managing arthritis symptoms in dogs. Always talk to your vet before giving your dog any medication.
- If your dogs arthritis is advanced, surgery may be an option. Ask your vet about whether surgery could help.
- Dogs with arthritis should not be encouraged to jump or run around excessively.
- Provide a low-stress environment and plenty of affection to help your dog feel better.
- Use ramps to help your dog get in and out of a car or up on a bed.
- Use carpets and secure rugs to help your pet get traction as he walks.
- Acupuncture is also beneficial for animals suffering from arthritis.
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Giving Your Dog A Comfortable Life: How To Care For Dogs With Arthritis
Watching your furry best friend have trouble getting off the floor can fill you with dread. You may question what you did wrong or if he’ll feel better again, and finding out that your dog has arthritis may come as a shock. Of course you want your pet to live a happy, healthy life without pain and discomfort. Osteoarthritis can affect about one in five dogs, but with the proper treatment, they do not have to live unhappy or pained lives. Find out how to care for dogs with arthritis.
How To Keep Your Dogs Joints Healthy
As a pet parent, your responsibility is to keep your dog happy and healthy. One of the most common reasons for joint pain in dogs is arthritis which affects over 70% of all dogs by the time they are 10 years old.
There are three major types of arthritis in dogs- osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and arthritis caused by hip dysplasia.
Osteoarthritis affects the cartilage in the joints- this is what keeps our bones from rubbing against each other when we move around.
Rheumatoid arthritis causes inflammation of synovial tissue which can lead to painful swelling in joints and bone loss. Rheumatoid arthritis is relatively rare in dogs, but can occur in small breed dogs and greyhounds.
Hip dysplasia is usually caused by genetics but it can also be caused by environmental factors like obesity or extreme changes in temperature or activity level.
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Can Dog Arthritis Be Prevented
In an ideal world, all dogs would start life with genetically sound conformation and joints. For purebreds, the importance of responsible breeding and the use of OFA certification or other screening tests to evaluate hip and elbow conformation of prospective breeding animals cannot be overstated.
Regardless of a dogâs origins, feeding them a high-quality diet throughout life and helping them maintain an optimal body weight are also crucial. If your dog is overweight, a healthy weight reduction plan should be instituted immediately.