Having trouble moving can seriously affect the quality of life of your pet.
There are some to symptoms to take into consideration.
Do you notice that your dog or cat:
If you answered one or more questions above with 'yes', there is a chance are that your pet is suffering from joint problems.
What is the cause of joint problems?
There are a number of factors that your dog or cat may suffer from the joints:
Age: When your dog or cat gets older, the articular cartilage gradually disappears. Although joint problems are much more common in dogs and cats over 7 years, even young dogs and cats may already suffer from it.
Breed: Some breeds are more prone to developing joint problems. For example dog breeds with an extra risk, the Labrador Retriever, Golden Retriever, German Shepherd and Rottweiler.
Obesity: Obesity means an extra burden to the joints and cartilage resulting in joint problems.
Development abnormalities: Some breeds can have congenital or hereditary conditions, this means they have a higher risk of developing joint problems later in life.
Accidents or injuries: Beschadiging van het kraakbeen (bijv. door een ongeval) kan tot gewrichtsproblemen op latere leeftijd leiden en de beweeglijkheid aantasten.
What can you do when you suspect your dog or cat has joint problems?
There are many possibilities in inhibiting and suppressing the symptoms. Custom exercise, anti-inflammatory / pain killer, providing special dietary foods, controlling body weight and make sure your dog / cat is not too heavy.
Making fast turns and running after balls and sticks are disastrous for dogs with joint problems. The next day your dog will be stiff and he or she may run worse. The advice is to let your dog move straight as much as possible and to give him the same amount of movement every day.
Swimming is good for arthritic joints. your dog however should be able to acces the water easily without having to climb steep waterfronts. Playing whit a Chuckit Ultra Ball or Chuckit Bumper in the water is better than on the grass. Furthermore it is important to make more shorter walks instead of one or two longs walks a day. By regular and frequent walks arthritis will rapidly get better.
Anti-inflammatory / painkillers
In addition to a painkilling effect for the dog it is important to also have an anti-infammatory effect. This means that thereby downward spiral of osteoarthritis is suppressed and the process is delayed. The painkilling effect will make your dog want to move again and if done wisely this will work positively to the overall process. Often you therefore have again a much happier dog in the house.
Supplements can make a very positive contribution to improving the quality of the joints. Dog Mobility Plus, Dog Flex and Cat Flex are examples. Dog Mobility Plus, Dog Flex and Cat Flex loosen the joint.
Obesity is disastrous for dogs and cats with joint problems. Pets with too much bodyweight will develop problems in a much faster rate. Losing weight and more exercise is therefore very important. Veterinarians and (better) pet shops can give advice.