Arthritis in humans and dogs alike is one of the oldest heart-breaking conditions in the world.
Unlike other conditions, it does not discriminate on age, sex, nor breed and can strike your dog at any time.
It really doesn’t matter if you feed your dog the best dog food, or give them all their vaccinations and walk them every day, rain or shine. Once you start seeing changes in their activity, limping and possibly even suspect an injury, in reality this could be arthritis.
We have our own answers as to the most effective treatment and will come to that shortly, but in the meantime the standard answers on how to treat your dog is listed below:
- Maintain the correct weight by proper exercise.
- Your vet may be able to recommend a (NSAIDS) Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to ease their pain
- Pills or food containing either Omega fatty acids, glucosamine or chondroitin sulphate – all of which have proved to help relieve the symptoms of arthritis
Before we bore you into reading the rest of this article, let us give you two very effective additional answers that we found to be the best and that works
- Maintaining the correct weight through proper exercise – by this, we are not talking about putting more stress on their joints by walking them further (that would be stupid) we mean one specific type of exercise – swimming. The benefits of swimming for a dog with arthritis is that its non weight bearing. Swimming your dog will help maintain and even increase muscles strength without causing injury to joints. Swimming will also increase your dog’s heart rate, increase blood flow, and improve the lung capacity.
- The ‘Spero’ harness from www.quincysdogs.com. The Spero is perfect for dogs with arthritis, spinal injuries, cruciate ligament injuries and older dogs. It was designed not just as a walking aid but to help rehabilitate dogs with such conditions.The Spero harness is quiet simple in the way it works. Your dog wears a harness; You wear a harness and this attaches to the dogs harness by way of an adjustable lead.As your centre of gravity is straight down, the aim is that your shoulders and legs (your two strongest body parts take around 20 to 30% off the back legs). This means you end up assisting your dog to walk without injuring yourself. As your dog walks further and further, the muscle are retained and your dog won’t get something called muscle atrophy; which means he starts losing muscles. Cause if he start losing muscles, it a downward slope from there and very hard to get back to normal, because now, you don’t only have the condition to contend with, but also the back leg muscles. What we also found with spinal injuries, is by taking some of the weight off the back, this takes some of the pressure off spine as the spine is straightened ever so slightly when lifting up of the back end.
The handles on the harness are simply there for balance and keeping the dog close to you or assisting gently when placing into the car etc…
Whatever you decide, make sure you work with a veterinarian to ensure that your dog does not suffer.