Arthritis Advice

 

Arthritis is not simply a sign of ageing, although most common in older animals. Arthritis is a disease of the joints, which can be treated.

 

Some signs of arthritis:

  • Reluctant to get up and play/go for a walk

  • Lick or bite a sore area

  • Change in personality, snaps or growls when touched

  • Slow to rise from a sitting or lying position

  • Stiffness and soreness after rest that improves with movement

 

Treatment options include:

 

Weight loss

Less weight means less stress on joints! This is the most useful thing you can do for a pet with arthritis. (it will also help prevent other health problems too!)

 

Glucosamine and chondroitin sulphate

A non-drug way of improving the quality of joint fluid and joint surfaces. For most animals it takes about 4 weeks on the product before you can see a difference. We stock Sashas Blend powder and Sea Flex chews.

 

Pentosan polysulphate injections

Cartrophen is an injectable drug which helps to improve the quality of joint fluid and joint surfaces.

An initial course of four injections 5-7 days apart is recommended.

 

Anti-inflammotory drugs

Non-sterodial anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) are quite safe and provide effective symptomatic relief for acute and chronic osteoarthritis. Use them in a plan with other treatments such as cartrophen injections and/or glucosamine and chondroitin.

 

Physical therapies

Exercise is important to maintain muscle mass and strength. Walking and swimming are ideal.

Although keep in mind your pet may be in pain so don’t overdo it, or let them swim to an area they can’t get out of easily. We can refer dogs for canine physiotherapy or hydrotherapy which can be very helpful in some cases.

 

Joint diet

Diets that include glucosamine, omega 3 & 6, or similar to help maintain joint health. The controlled calorie content makes it easy to maintain a healthy weight.

 

Acupuncture

A viable option for many dogs and cats. It helps by increasing blood flow to the joints and muscles, alleviates pain by reducing muscle spasms & releasing endorphins.

 

Warmth

A nice warm padded bed especially during the cooler months. Some pets may allow a heat bag on sore areas.

 

We get the best results when we combine two or more different strategies.

For any more information please ask our friendly staff.