Canine arthritis in Surrey – age, causes, symptoms and treatment
September 15, 2023
Molesey Vets’ team of experienced dog vets treat dogs with arthritis almost daily. As September is Pet Pain Awareness Month, to help owners who have a dog with an arthritis diagnosis, our team have put together this guide to help owners understand the condition and the treatment options available.
Although most common in senior dogs, did you know that canine arthritis can affect dogs of all ages? Take our canine health assessment to see if your dog (no matter their age) may be suffering from arthritis.
What is canine arthritis?
Our Veterinary Surgeon Darren explains that canine osteoarthritis, commonly known as arthritis, is a degenerative condition that unfortunately has no cure. Arthritis will cause the cartilage found in your dog’s joints to deteriorate. This causes your dog pain when they move as the cartilage acts as a cushion between their bones.
Canine arthritis is known to affect mostly older dogs; however, some younger dogs can suffer too. It is worth noting that most dog breeds become senior between the ages of 5 and 9 years old so you may start to notice signs of arthritis earlier than you may expect. This is often dependent on breed and health status – something our team could advise you on here at Molesey Vets.
Spotting signs of arthritis in your dog
Some of the common signs of arthritis you may notice in your dog include changes in mobility such as stiffness or limping. It can also affect their behaviour and demeanour.
Our health assessment quiz will help you to work out what signs your dog may be exhibiting that could be attributed to an arthritis diagnosis. These are useful to then relay to your vet once you book an appointment. During this appointment, your vet will examine your senior dog, discuss what symptoms you have seen your dog exhibit, review their medical history and then possibly organise further diagnostic testing to understand how affected your dog’s joints could be.
How do Molesey Vets treat a dog with arthritis?
- Weight management – regular exercise and a balanced diet tailored to your dog’s needs will help to maintain a healthy weight, in turn reducing the stress on their joints.
- Medications – Our vets may prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs – these will help to control your dog’s pain.
- Physical therapy – your vet may prescribe complementary therapies to help alleviate your dog’s pain. Hydrotherapy, acupuncture, laser therapy, gentle massage and different range-of-motion exercises can all help to improve your pet’s mobility and comfort levels.
- Supplements – your vet may recommend certain supplements to help support your pet’s joint health.
- Home management – our vets will advise you on how to make your dog comfortable at home. This includes advice on bedding, flooring, ramps and mobility aids.
Booking regular appointments for your senior dog with our team at Molesey Vets will help to keep on top of their healthcare and provide the support they need for their twilight years. With just a few changes, you could help your arthritic dog maintain a healthy lifestyle and remain comfortable.