In conjunction with World Arthritis Day, veterinarian Dr Katrina Warren has provided some top tips to help ease joint pain in arthritic dogs.
Affecting around one in five Australian dogs, arthritis is a painful condition that can affect dogs of any age, size or breed. As the signs of joint pain are not always clear, owners might think they are just symptoms of their pet getting older. However this is not always the case.
Below Dr Warren has listed the symptoms to watch out for and how owners can help make their furry friend feel comfortable.
Five signs of joint pain:
- Difficulty moving – hesitant to jump, run or climb stairs
- Stiffness or discomfort when getting up from lying down
- Limping or lagging behind on walks
- Experiencing pain when being touched in certain areas
- Licking or chewing at the joints
“If your dog is no longer jumping with enthusiasm when you come home, is avoiding flights of stairs or stiff and slow to get up, then chances are he or she is showing signs of joint pain and stiffness,” says Dr Warren.
How to alleviate joint pain:
- Moderate your pet’s exercise. Regular exercise is still important for muscle tone and joint flexibility. Offer daily, low impact exercise like gentle walks and swimming.
- Weight loss: being overweight can exacerbate arthritis by putting extra pressure on the joints. Talk to your veterinarian about a weight loss plan for your dog.
- Pamper them: dogs with joint pain may benefit from regular massages and acupuncture.
- Home improvements: Provide an elevated bed away from drafts and add extra blankets in winter.
- Discuss treatment options with your veterinarian: create a program of treatments to minimise your dog’s pain and help slow its progression. Natural supplements such as Rose-Hip Vital Canine may help improve joint health and the general wellbeing of active and aging dogs. It’s made from 100 per cent pure and natural rosehip fruit, which is a rich source of natural vitamin C and powerful antioxidant.
“There’s nothing more heartbreaking than seeing your pets suffer. But the good news is there are many things we can do to make them feel more comfortable and improve their quality of life including moderating their exercise, avoiding stairs, weight management, medication and natural supplements including Rose-Hip Vital Canine,” Dr Warren says.Check out the latest animal attractions and events at our all-new DOGSLife Directory