If your dog is suffering from arthritis, he may be slow to get up from a nap or unwilling to chase a ball due to the troublesome condition. Because of joint inflammation, your dog may be in serious pain. Fortunately, there are several steps that you as a dog owner can take in preventing arthritis in your pet, ranging from adding supplements to his diet to more regulated exercise.
Dog Arthritis: What to Know
There are two types of arthritis commonly seen in dogs: degenerative, which is caused by cartilage destruction that occurs from injuries or genetic problems like hip dysplasia, and inflammatory joint disease, which is caused by infections or autoimmune disorders. It’s important to know which type of arthritis your dog has so that you can better treat him.
How to Prevent Arthritis in Your Dog
1) Regulate Your Dog’s Exercise Habits
A dog that sits around all day without exercise and has a rough-and-tumble few hours at the dog park on the weekend is much more susceptible to arthritis than a dog that gets a half-hour of exercise every day of the week. Break up your pet’s play sessions throughout each day instead of going full-bore at the park once a week. If you don’t have the time to dedicate to exercising your dog each day, make sure you’re letting him take breaks during his longer play sessions.
2) Use Stairs or a Ramp
A dog that is especially small, such as a dachshund or yorkie will have trouble getting on or off sofas, beds, or even into and out of cars in their old age. Each time he lands on a hard surface, his joints will be impacted which may lead to severe arthritis. Ramps and stairs can save your dog’s joints from potential joint injuries.
3) Watch Your Dog’s Weight
Watching your dog’s weight will help you understand the extra baggage he’s been carrying around. Unnecessary pounds from excessive treats or overfeeding can be detrimental to his joints. The extra treats may make him happy, but the extra weight will undoubtedly leave him more open to arthritis problems in the future. To tell if your dog is overweight, examine his ribcage. If you can’t see a faint outline of the ribs or a slight waistline when standing above him, then you should cut back on the treats.
4) Consider Adding Supplements to His Food
Elk Velvet Antler has been shown to decrease joint inflammation in dogs. High-quality supplements for dogs are an easy and quick way to fight back against joint inflammation, so your dog can enjoy playing without suffering pain. Wapiti’s Elk Velvet Antler supplement is perfect for improving mobility in senior pets that need more energy in the second stages of their life.
Keep your dog – and yourself – happy, by monitoring him for signs of arthritis.