Arthritis is a common disease that pets develop, mostly in their golden years. As your pet ages, the cartilage separating their bones begins to wear down. As such, the cartilage gets thinner and the bones start rubbing together resulting in pain and inflammation at the joint. This affects your pet's mobility and their overall lifestyle. At AAH, our veterinarians can create a treatment plan to alleviate your pet's pain and help them enjoy the rest of their long life.
What are signs that my pet has arthritis?
Arthritis can affect any joint in your pet's body, but it is very common in the knees, hips, lower back, elbows and wrists. Your pet will try to hide their pain but because it's a debilitating disease, their symptoms will become more obvious. Some signs of the disease are:
- Stiff or swollen joints
- Difficulty using the stairs
- Losing interest in play time
- Trembling when they walk or run
When you notice these signs, please come in for an assessment. We will perform a physical assessment as well as run X-rays to diagnose your pet.
How is arthritis treated in pets?
The disease has no cure, but our team can provide pain management and therapies to make your pet comfortable. Once the disease is confirmed, your veterinarian may prescribe pain medication and or joint supplement. Some rehabilitation therapies such as laser therapy, therapeutic exercise, hydrotherapy, manual therapy or acupuncture can also help with this condition. We are proud to offer these services in our rehabilitation center. To make an appointment, please call us at 905-683-6430.
How to care for my arthritic pet?
If your pet has arthritis the chances of the disease progressing are quite high. Along with the help of a veterinarian there's plenty that you can do to make life easier for your loyal companion. Here are some tips to consider:
- Add slip resistant surfaces like rugs or even socks with grip to give your pet more traction on slippery surfaces
- Elevate their food bowls and water - this eases the strain on their neck and back
- Provide mobility assistance - ramps and assistance harness can help your pet gain back some of their mobility.