What is arthritis?
As our beloved pets age, the chances of them getting arthritis significantly increases. Arthritis is a common term used to categorize a variety of joint pain or joint diseases. The most commonly affected areas in pets are the knees, shoulders, hips, and elbows. Over time, the wear and tear and instability of joints can greatly impact our pets’ ability to move and can cause them a great deal of discomfort.
What signs should I look out for in my pet?
There are a few tell-tale signs that your pet may be suffering from arthritis:
- Limping: Keep an eye out for a limp when your pet walks or runs. Pets who suffer from arthritis may be favoring one leg over another. A consistent limp over time can be a cause for concern.
- Spinal Pain: One area that can really be affected by arthritis issues is the spine. Your pet may suffer from a sore neck or have an unusual posture with a hunch in the back.
- Lethargy: Your pet may start to get tired more easily, with walks and playdates becoming much shorter than usual. Arthritis can cause pain which makes moving a much more difficult activity than before.
- Muscle Deterioration: Over time, inactivity can lead to weak muscles and muscle deterioration. Muscle atrophy can cause limbs that once looked normal to look thinner than usual.
Causes of arthritis in pets
There are quite a few factors that affect the likelihood of your pet getting arthritis including:
- Breed: Certain breeds are more prone to getting arthritis. For example, larger breeds such as golden retrievers, labs, and german shepherds may be affected by hip and knee conditions over time which can lead to arthritis.
- Injuries and infections: Pets suffering from injuries or infections can increase the likelihood of them developing arthritis. In these situations, it’s best to get a check-up with your vet so you can address any symptoms early on.
- Obesity: Too much added weight on your pet can add stress to the joints and lead to joint damage.
- Age: As our pets age, the joints become more brittle and become prone to getting joint pain and disease. If your pet is middle-aged or older, make sure to schedule frequent veterinary visits.
Treatment for Pet Arthritis at easyvet
There are ways to reduce the impact of arthritis in pets and it’s best to start early. For example, try the following:
- Give your pet a healthy and well-balanced nutritional diet
- Schedule regular check-ups with your local veterinarian
- Exercise your dog regularly
- Keep your pet’s weight in check to avoid unnecessary pressure on the joints
- Ask your vet about joint supplements
Your pet may have early signs of joint disease if they are showing signs of stiffness, lethargy, general pain, loss of muscle mass, or reluctance to run and play. Consider taking them to a pet vet clinic such as easyvet, where our experienced veterinarians provide arthritis treatment at affordable prices and can give your pet a comprehensive wellness exam to make sure there are no other serious issues affecting your pet. We look forward to helping your pet!