Arthritis is a common degenerative disease that occurs in a pet’s joints. It slowly destroys the cartilage between bones, causing inflammation and chronic pain. Given our experience and familiarity with cases of arthritis, we can properly diagnose your pet with the correct type and cause, as well as develop an appropriate treatment plan to help manage pain.
There are several different types of arthritis including degenerative joint diseases that are resultant of stress on joints or are caused by malformation of joints; inflammatory joint diseases that are hereditary or caused by bacterial, fungal, or tick-borne illnesses; and idiopathic diseases where the cause is unknown. Regardless of your pet’s type of arthritis, our veterinarian is here to help formulate a treatment plan and ease suffering.
Symptoms of arthritis:
- Difficulty climbing stairs.
- Difficulty jumping up on furniture.
- Difficulty walking longer distances.
- Favoring particular limbs (namely when they get up from a resting position).
- Hesitant to eat hard, dry food.
- Hesitant to rise from a resting position.
- Stiff in the morning.
- Unexplained weight loss.
- Unwillingness to sit or refusal to stand.
How is arthritis treated?
Unfortunately, arthritis isn’t curative, but there are ways that you can help prevent your pet from acquiring arthritis at a young age. Because the most prevalent types of arthritis are influenced by obesity, regular exercise and a healthy diet are essential. Maintaining a healthy weight is the best preventative strategy in prolonging the onset of arthritis.
If your pet is already suffering from arthritis, there are several methods of treatment that can help relieve pain. For obese pets that suffer from arthritis, the first step is to monitor weight loss to reduce stress being placed on joints. Supplements can also be used to aid in pain relief. Analgesics, anti-inflammatories, chondroitin, fatty acid supplements, and glucosamine can all aid in relieving inflammation and reducing pain.
For pet owners who prefer natural relief for their pets, there are homeopathic treatments available. Cayenne, ginger, ginseng, guggul, and milk vetch are all natural plants or spices that can be added to your pet’s diet to offer relief from arthritis.
If you have questions about arthritis, or think your pet might be suffering from arthritis and want to seek treatment, contact our office today.