Arthritis Treatment for Dogs
One of the more common problems that we see our older patients for is arthritis. Just like when humans get older, dogs too can get arthritis that can interfere with their movement and quality of life.
What are the symptoms of arthritis in dogs?
Signs to watch out for can be as subtle as slowing down when going for a walk or when exercising or as apparent as limping and not putting weight on a leg. Usually, stiffness is more prominent after laying down for a longer period, and dogs will typically “warm out of it”. Dogs can be reluctant to jump up into vehicles or onto beds and may not want to use stairs anymore.
What causes arthritis in dogs?
General wear and tear over the years will cause damage to the cartilage of the bones that make up the joints, leading to inflammation and pain. Trauma or injury to a joint can also cause arthritis.
What are some treatment options for arthritis in dogs?
There are many different ways to treat arthritis depending on the severity and on the dog. Using multiple different therapies is usually the most effective treatment. One important area is to have an ideal body weight to lessen the strain on the joints. Supplements such as glucosamine or omega 3s can help some dogs a lot. Dasuquin or Cosequin are both supplements taken by mouth that include glucosamine and omega 3s plus many other useful supplements. There is also an injectable supplement that helps with joint health called Cartrophen. For patients with more severe arthritis, pain medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory for dogs are available.
Can I give my dog Aspirin?
It is not a good idea to give your dog aspirin unless it is prescribed by a vet. There are much safer and more effective pain medications made specifically for dogs.