Arthritis in Dogs

Is your dog beginning to slow down? Many dogs develop arthritis as they age. Larger breeds of dogs are more likely to develop arthritis than small ones are, but any dog can develop arthritis. Read on as your veterinarian Smyrna goes over some of the basics of arthritis in dogs.

Causes

Canine arthritis is a degenerative disease. Just as with arthritis in humans, it is characterized by inflammation and pain in joints. Trauma, immune system issues, obesity, genetics, and prior injuries can all contribute to arthritis, but some dogs develop it as a part of the aging process.

Symptoms

Some of the symptoms of arthritis in dogs include limping, loss of energy, and stiffness. You may also see your dog licking at some of his sore spots. Your furry buddy may have a hard time getting up or laying down, and may become reluctant to go up or down stairs or get in and out of the car. Some dogs become withdrawn, and lose interest in playing or going for walks. Fido’s temperament may change a bit as well. Being in pain doesn’t make for a cheerful dog, so your usually-friendly pup may become grumpy.

Treatment

There is no cure for arthritis, but there are definitely some things you can do to help manage the condition and make Fido more comfortable. Keeping him at a healthy weight is one of the most important. Carrying even a few extra pounds will add stress on fragile bones, and make it more difficult for your furry pal to get proper exercise. Today, there are some medicines which may help with the pain and inflammation associated with canine arthritis, so don’t be afraid to ask your vet about medication. A proper diet is also essential. Fido may benefit from some supplements as well. Fish oil is often recommended, as it will help keep those sensitive joints lubricated. In addition to these things, you can also take steps at home to help Fido stay comfortable. We strongly recommend investing in a quality orthopedic dog bed, so your dog will be able to sleep comfortably. Doggy ramps and stairs will help Fido with getting in and out of cars and up and down from furniture.

If you know or suspect that your dog has arthritis, please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of any assistance at all. As your vet clinic Smyrna, we are here to serve all of your pet care needs. To read more pet care articles, please click here.