Arthritis is one of the most common joint problems for dogs. It is a painful condition that affects both humans and animals, and at any age. In the case of dogs which experience joint problems, there are specific joint supplements for dogs (find out more here) which should be considered.
While it is more common to see arthritic joints and joint problems in older pets, younger pets can supper too. Some breeds of dog are more prone to joint problems than others.
Dog breeds more prone to joint problems include:
- Springer Spaniels
- German Shepherds
- Golden Retrievers
- Bernese mountain dogs
What Causes Joint Problems in Dogs?
Arthritis in dogs is caused by joint rubbing together and causing abnormal friction which creates pain and information for your pet. In healthy dogs, cartilage coats the end of the bones and helps the joints to work smoothly.
But with age, cartilage can become worn down which means joints maybe rubbing bone on bone. However, arthritis is not just related to a dog’s age, it can also be caused by poor genetics or injuries relating to torn cartilage.
How Can I Spot the Signs of Arthritis in My Dog?
Dogs rarely show their pain until it’s too much to bear, which can make it difficult to spot the early signs of discomfort for your pet. Make sure you are keeping a close eye on your pet and watch out for signs of:
- Licking joints
- Low mood
- Slowing down on walks
- Limping or lameness on any joints, often intermittent
- Feeling the cold more than usual
Grumpiness and sensitivity (especially when being touched or stroked on affected joints).
If you begin to spot these symptoms, take your dog to the vet so that they can run tests and give a full diagnosis. If your dog is diagnosed with a joint problem or arthritis there are many treatment options that your vet may prescribe. The vet may suggest treatments like anti-inflammatory painkillers, hydrotherapy, joint mobility support and sometimes your vet will prescribe a more invasive procedure like a joint replacement.
What Can I Do to Ease My Dog’s Joint Pain?
There are a lot of things you can do support your dog and he’s their pain if they’re suffering from arthritis. Firstly, you should always visit the vet for professional advice. It should be noted that these suggestions are not a replacement for professional veterinary care. always make sure you discuss your options with your vet first.
You may be able to support your dog with daily massages, regular short walks, keeping your pet warm, providing them a comfy and soft bed, keeping your dog’s weight down and providing them the nutritional care they need. A balanced and nutritionally complete diet is important for every dog.
You may also like to supplement your dog’s diet with joint support supplements. There are a few options on the market and the best way to support your dog is talking to your vet about the best options for your dog.
Your vet may suggest a supplement that include Glucosamine or Chondroitin as these nutrients will support your dog’s joint function and help to ease their arthritis symptoms.