Tag Archive for: symptoms of osteoarthritis

Just as it happens to humans when they get older, osteoarthritis can also occur in dogs. With age, your joints begin to suffer from the passage of time and age. And their wear and tear can lead to osteoarthritis.

This condition, like humans, appears in dogs due to the wear and tear of cartilage. It is a degenerative disease, and the wear and tear of the cartilage can become so severe that the bones it separates begin to rub against each other.

Osteoarthritis in dogs usually affects mainly joints such as the elbow, hip, knee, spine, etc. They can be mild and not cause too much discomfort to the animal. Or be so severe that the dog suffers pain and cannot move comfortably. Luckily, osteoarthritis in dogs presents various symptoms. If they are detected in time, the animal can be taken to the veterinarian and treated to alleviate its symptoms and stop its progression. In addition, joint supports or protectors can also be used to strengthen the affected joints. This way you can have a better quality of life.

Symptoms of osteoarthritis in dogs

Osteoarthritis has no specific known cause. In some cases it can be caused by a joint problem that causes a problem in the joint. For example, hip dysplasia. It can also be accentuated by excess weight, due to the extra load it must bear. Or some medical treatments.

In any case, the symptoms you present will always be the same. Of course, they depend on which leg or hip of the dog is affected. But the one that is common to all of them is that, suddenly, the dog seems less active and moves less. Of running already, we don’t even talk. In addition, it may even begin to limp slightly.

It is important to observe if this limp is more pronounced when you get up after sitting for a while. Or lying down. And also if you limp more when it’s colder. This is because, like humans, low temperatures are not good for osteoarthritis in dogs.

In addition to these symptoms, it is also necessary to observe if, although the dog does not limp, it has difficulty climbing the stairs. You may also have joint pains, although this is more complicated to detect. If it is a lot, it usually resists walking. When it occurs in the front legs and the animal knows how to give the paw, it can be a method to know if it has pains. If you don’t want to kick up, your joint may hurt.

The dog may also suffer from some loss of tone and muscle mass. And you may even have a lack of appetite, or appear lethargic at times. If the osteoarthritis you have is quite advanced, your postures may become more forced. They will be due to the stiffness of the affected limb.

Another symptom of osteoarthritis in dogs can be inflammation of the affected paw. This will be caused by friction between the bones, which will affect the nearby muscles, which will suffer the consequences.

If you notice that your dog has one or more of these symptoms for a few days, it is advisable to take him to the veterinarian. This way you can examine it and diagnose if you suffer from osteoarthritis or any other milder ailment.

Dogs can also suffer from osteoarthritis as they get older. Just like humans. This disease, caused by wear and tear on the cartilage of the limbs of animals, causes them a lot of suffering. Luckily, osteoarthritis in dogs can be treated.

Thus, among its symptoms are pains, lameness of the affected limb or stiffness. Also difficulty moving and climbing stairs. And even experience a loss of mass in the muscles, and an abnormal decrease in your appetite.

Obviously, the sooner the symptoms of osteoarthritis are detected in a dog, the sooner the most appropriate treatment can be applied. As we will see below, it will be different depending on its severity.

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Treatment for osteoarthritis in dogs

The first thing to do before a dog affected by osteoarthritis is several changes in its routine. All with the aim of getting the animal to have the least problems and the greatest possible autonomy. For example, if you regularly rest in a house with several floors, change your sleeping cushion to a plant where you do not have to climb stairs.

It will also be necessary to inevitably follow the instructions of the veterinarian. He will probably suggest giving the dog a treatment based on anti-inflammatories. In addition, it is likely to suggest that the animal take a compound with vitamins and minerals, in addition to collagen. With this type of compounds, what the veterinarian intends is that the cartilage stops its wear. Also prevent it from deforming.

However, we must not ignore the fact that osteoarthritis is a chronic degenerative disease. It is necessary to avoid as much as possible that the animal has pains, for which other measures can be taken. Among them, monitor your weight and prevent you from gaining excess weight. You also have to make sure that there are many fatty acids in your diet. This favors the elasticity of the joints.

You also have to make sure that the dog does light exercise. Of course, adapted to your possibilities. For example, try to take walks, but prevent it from running. On the other hand, since extreme temperatures are not suitable for osteoarthritis, you have to protect yourself from them. Thus, it is necessary to avoid exposing it to both extreme cold and excessive heat.

In very severe cases of osteoarthritis, dogs may need to replace their affected joints with prostheses. Exactly the same as what happens in older people with age-related degenerative diseases. But that is only appropriate if the situation is already very serious. Or if the veterinarian so advises. Meanwhile, they can be helped with palliative treatments. Or with protectors that provide stability.

Protectors for limbs affected by osteoarthritis

In case osteoarthritis causes enough discomfort to the dog, it is advisable to protect the limbs that are affected. For this, protectors suitable for both the animal and the disease can be used.

For example, knee protectors for dogs. Or, if the animal is already very old and suffers from advanced hip osteoarthritis, a wheelchair can help it maintain mobility. Even a suitable harness, with which dogs with mobility problems in the hind legs can achieve more stability.