IS YOUR PET SHOWING SIGNS OF SLOWING DOWN OVER THE COLDER MONTHS?
Dr. Rachele Lowe (Lowe, 2015)
Lowe, D. R. (2015, 8 7). http://www.mosmanvet.com.au. Retrieved from IS YOUR PET SHOWING SIGNS OF SLOWING DOWN OVER THE COLDER MONTHS?: http://www.mosmanvet.com.au/Blog/tabid/21948/EntryId/511/IS-YOUR-PET-SHOWING-SIGNS-OF-SLOWING-DOWN-OVER-THE-COLDER-MONTHS.aspx
Canine Arthritis- Veterinary Tip
Canine arthritis is a common, debilitating problem for many dogs. Treatment and management can be complex and confusing for pet owners because there are so many options and products on the market. Below are some of the best management techniques and treatments available.
Veterinary Tip 1- Weight.
Without a doubt, weight is the single most important factor in improving the quality of life for arthritic pets. An 11 year study completed at the University of Pennsylvania has proven beyond a doubt that slimming an arthritic pet is enormously beneficial.
Given that a good 30% of Aussie dogs are overweight, this is important news for pet owners. If you have a young dog, keep it slim and you’ll greatly reduce the chances of it developing arthritis.
Veterinary Tip 2- Non Steroidal anti inflammatory drugs.
These anti inflammatory drugs offer pain relief for animals suffering from arthritis. The drugs should be used under Veterinary supervision and your Vet may suggest a blood and urine test to ensure your dog has good liver and kidney function prior to starting the course. Don’t be tempted to use your own Aspirin or Panadol for your dog’s pain relief- there are much safer, more effective products on the market for pets. Other pain relief medications can and should be used under veterinary supervision as necessary.
Veterinary Tip 3- Anti inflammatory agents & Chondroprotective
There are many different supplements and treatments available to pets, some which are proven and some which are not. We know for a fact that the Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids have a potent anti inflammatory action which is beneficial for joints, among other things. Green Lipped Muscle extract is another proven anti inflammatory agent. One of the cornerstones of arthritis management is Zydax, a substance that is given as a course of injections under the skin. Evidence suggests that Zydax promotes cartilage growth and healing as well as providing significant clinical improvement. Other supplements that are beneficial include Chondroitin and Glucosamine which may decrease joint cartilage degeneration and increase cartilage production. These supplements can be provided in tablet form, or in prescription diet food available from your vet.
Veterinary Tip 4- Surgery
There are many different surgical techniques available for our pets to manage and even cure many arthritic conditions. Hip replacements on dogs has been performed by specialists for many years now and the success rate is impressive. The replaced joint is pain free and should function completely normally. The prosthesis usually lasts for the lifetime of the pet. As well as hip replacement surgery, dogs can now have knee & elbow replacement surgery.
Veterinary Tip 5- Exercise
Regular, non jarring exercise such as swimming and walking in water is important for arthritic pets because it helps to keep the muscle mass developed to support the joints. Any dogs with arthritis should avoid ball chasing, stair climbing, running on hard surfaces and any exercise that involves a lot of twisting and turning.