Is Your Dog At Risk?
Is your dog showing any of these signs?
- Difficultly rising from a resting position?Lying down or resting more than usual?
- Stiffness after exercise?
- Reluctance to exercise as long as usual?
- Trouble climbing stairs?
- Difficulty walking, running or jumping?
- Experiencing a decreased appetite or lack of interest in food?
- Experiencing a change in behaviour?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, your dog may be suffering from osteoarthritis.
What is Osteoarthritis?
It is a chronic, degenerative joint disease that affects both the soft tissues and bones of a joint. It causes pain and decreased flexibility in the affected joint(s). It can affect any joint in your dogs body but the most commonly affected joints are:
- The stifle (Knee joint)
- The Elbow
- The Carpus (wrist)
- The Intervertebral joints (spine)
- The Hips.
Although further research is underway at the moment Osteoarthritis can’t be cured, but it can be treated.
Veterinary treatment focuses on reducing pain and inflammation, slowing the progression of the disease, facilitating the repair of damaged tissues and maintaining or improving joint function. This is achieved through a combination of weight control, proper diet, controlled exercise and physical therapy, anti-inflammatory and analgesic drugs, and disease modifying agents.
It is estimated that osteoarthritis affects 1 out of 5 adult dogs over the age of a year. All breeds of dog, whatever weight, size, or age can be affected, but there is a greater incidence seen in older dogs as well as larger breeds such as Labradors, German Shepherds, Rottweillers, Great Danes and Saint Bernards.
For further information on osteoarthritis and how it can be treated contact the friendly healthcare team at Riverbank Animal Hospital, your local vet in the Grafton area.