Dog Arthritis Overview – Caring for Canines
Pet’s are like children in the regard that if your dog or cat ever has an injury, it is very painful to witness. We treat our dogs and cats with all the love and compassion we possible can. Whenever they get a little sluggish or peaked we start looking for ways to fix it. Dog arthritis is a very common ailment for older pets. For those of you who have experienced a pet faced with early onset arthritis, you know what a blow the diagnosis can be. We know Syn-Flex can be a godsend for this and wanted to publish a “run-down” on arthritis in dogs.
Arthritis is generally defined as the inflammation of one or more joints, which results in swelling, pain, stiffness, and inhibited movement. Among older dogs over the age of 7 years, it’s commonly caused by the wear and tear of cartilage. As dogs get older, their joints are weakened. However, dog arthritis is not only limited to older dogs. Surprisingly, arthritis can also occur in younger dogs or even puppies. Some certain larger breeds including German Shepherds, Labradors and Golden Retrievers are said to be more prone to canine arthritis.
Old age. According to statistics, every dog has a 65% chance of acquiring canine arthritis as it reaches 7 to 11 years of age.
Lack of proper nutrition. Just like humans, dogs also need the right amount of vitamins and minerals to stay healthy. Protein is especially very important to keep their bones and joints in good shape.
Being overweight. Many owners feed their dogs left over food that are quite unhealthy. As a result, they don’t get the necessary nutrition and they gain a lot of weight.
Broken bones or injuries affecting the joints. Dogs that were previously injured due to an accident are more likely to develop arthritis. When a dog is injured, it is very crucial for them to receive professional care to make sure they are diagnosed correctly and treated accordingly.
Infectious disease. Canine arthritis can also be cause by an infectious disease such as lyme disease.
Genetic problem. Arthritis can be inherited. It’s not a good idea to breed dogs with arthritis because their offspring are likely to develop this same disease.
Decreased physical activity. Dogs suffering from arthritis may appear lazy. Because of the pain, they become reluctant to move about. Simple movements like getting up and down could be difficult. They limp while walking.
Loss of appetite. Arthritis can affect the dog’s appetite. Weight loss might be observed.
Pain and fever. These are serious signs that the dog is suffering from an advanced stage of arthritis or another disease.
Other signs are stiff or swollen joints, sensitivity to cold and noticeable changes in the behavior.
Dogs suffering from arthritis need professional help because the pain will significantly affect their lives.
Healthy diet and regular exercise. A well balance diet will help avoid weight gain while regular exercise will strengthen the muscles and cartilage. Walking will help increase the blood flow through the joints.