Arthritis affects people but also our dear pets. Statistics say that in US about 25% of pets are affected by arthritis. As a dog owner and lover, you should pay attention that your non-human friend is always in good mood, playful and that it eats well and healthy food. But if you do notice changes in your dog’s mood and activity like difficulty sitting, standing, running, climbing stairs, or if it’s less playful, or if it gained weight or its behavior changed you should probably pay your vet a visit. You friend could have arthritis. The veterinarian will do an examination and an X-ray to you dog. If this should be the diagnostic you’ll have to start a treatment immediately. The sooner the disease is discovered the better. But most therapies only ease the pain caused by the inflammation of the joint and decrease the progression of the disease.
Arthritis is a disease where the joint is poorly lubricated and spacing in the joints occurs. There are a couple of factors that can cause arthritis like the age of your dog, overweight, infection, joint trauma, the wear of cartilage, the breakdown of the cartilage which is most likely the result of poor lubrication and hydraulic spacing in the joints. Before you start treating your dog’s arthritis you should talk with a veterinary first. Your vet, before prescribing medications, will do some blood tests to your dog to be sure that you dog will metabolize these drugs and not will suffer from side effects like diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite.
Common treatments include a diet and an exercising plan to lose and maintain a normal weight, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, analgesics, over-the-counter pet treatments and natural remedies. Many veterinarians prescribe drugs containing glucosamine sulfate, chondroitin sulfate and methylsulfonylmethane.
Glucosamine is a natural component found in your dog’s cartilage and it’s found mainly in shellfish and sea creatures. Practically, when this component is added to your dog’s diet in higher doses it stimulates the repair of damaged joints. When choosing the right medication containing glucosamine you should always go for a liquid form because it’s active ingredients are absorbed faster and better and where it’s most needed. For dogs with inherited bone conditions, like knee or hip dysphasia, glucosamine supplements may be useful.
They also recommend including in your dog diet, other natural ingredients like Vitamin C, Boswellia, Greenlip Mussels, Zinc Selenium, Manganese, Bromelain that help ease the pain, reduce inflammation and repair the damaged cartilage. For decreasing the inflammatory effects of arthritis antioxidant vitamins and fatty acid supplements are also recommended and used as a natural remedy. Surgery may be offered as an option in cases where there is no improvement from physical therapy or medications or in advanced cases of arthritis. But there are fewer and fewer veterinarians that will accept to perform this kind of procedure as they are not equipped or qualified accordingly.
Prevention is important when it comes to arthritis. If your dog is not affected by arthritis yet you can try to prevent this disease from affecting your dog by starting to include joint support ingredients in their middle years diet, by paying more attention to what your pets eats and in what quantities, by making an yearly appointment to the veterinary. Although glucosamine is a cure it has been shown it is also a good preventive measure.
You should also take into account that recovery of dogs with arthritis takes time and you need to give them proper care and the extra attention.