Joint pain in dogs is all too common. Your best furry friend’s joints take a pounding constantly running after tennis balls, jumping on and off everything that doesn’t move, and from aging. Joint-related problems such as ligament tears, hip dysplasia, arthritis, and osteoarthritis plagues many dogs, but there are ways to help lessen the issues.
The first sign of a problem is noticing when your dog is less active or having moredifficulty with common activities, such as going up stairs, getting off the couch, or getting into the car.
Larger dogs, because of their weight and size, tend to have more joint issues. But there are specific breeds that are predisposed to problem including Newfoundlands, Rottweilers, and Bernese Mountain dogs. Again, another reason to adopt or rescue a mutt - they often have less problems than pure-breeds.
And while there are surgical treatments and procedures that can help alleviate severe joint problems, but there are others things that pet parents can do to less the pain or reduce the chances of having problems:
Watch the weight - Having your dog at its ideal weight can decrease the stresses on the joints. It also decreases inflammation because fat is a source of inflammation in the joints.
Build strength - Because muscle mass and muscle function helps protect joints, it’s crucial to make sure that your dogs gets plenty of exercise and does physical activities.
Feed them well - There are many quality foods that are formulated for joint health. They already have some of the additives in there, like fish oils, which help decrease inflammation, and glucosamine/chondroitin.
Try therapy - If your dog is already experiencing joint pain, you might want to try some physical therapy. New programs for dogs include underwater treadmills, ultrasound therapy, and electric stimulation.
Add supplements - Supplements that contain glucosamine and chondroitin, and fish oils, are anti inflammatory products that when added to your dog’s daily regimen can help reduce joint pain and may improve flexibility and mobility.