Dog Diseases - Arthritis

Dog bone joint pain Canine arthritis is a degenerative disease of the joints. It affects one in five dogs, and is especially common in older pets. It can be caused by any of several conditions: hip dysplasia, knee dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, being overweight, insufficient activity, spurs in the joints, cartilage deterioration, excessive bone growth and injury.

Symptoms of arthritis can range from mild to severe, but without intervention mild symptoms become worse. Early symptoms of arthritis include: Stiffness and slowness on rising from rest, slight lameness, visible pain when the affected joint is pressed, repeated licking of affected joint and loss of appetite. As the ailment progresses, the dog may become reluctant to exercise or even move, whimper and pant frequently and show noticeable changes in behaviour and/or bodily functions.

Arthritis caused by genetic factors like dysplasia cannot be prevented. To ensure that environmental factors don’t contribute to arthritis, make sure your dog gets the right amount and type of exercise. In case of injury, use physical therapy to keep joints supple.

Arthritis is a painful and degenerative illness, so it is important to detect the signs early. Treatment options for arthritic dogs include analgesic medication to reduce pain and inflammation, supplements to build cartilage, weight and exercise control measures and surgery to reshape the affected joint.