Most older cats and dogs will get arthritis. Studies show that 80% of dogs get it, and 90% of cats. Fortunately, arthritis can be managed with some help from our veterinarian. Our team at Amelia Pointe Animal Hospital & Daycare in Fernandina Beach would like to take a look at some of the questions that we run into regarding arthritis in pets.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is the name given to cover many different kinds of degenerative joint conditions. Arthritis is when a pet’s joints become swollen and painful. This makes it difficult for the pet to move about.
Can Younger Pets Get Arthritis?
Younger pets can get arthritis, especially if they have suffered an injury or malnutrition. Dogs with, or who once had, hip dysplasia is also prone to developing arthritis. Large breed dogs can also get arthritis before their senior years.
How Do Pets Get Arthritis?
Several factors determine whether a pet will get arthritis. Some dog breeds, like large dog breeds, are prone to arthritis. Pets with past injuries to the joints are also prone. Other factors include whether a pet is overweight, if he or she suffers from a birth defect, had a history of being malnourished, or if the pet had any infections which may have damaged the joints.
Can I Give My Arthritis Medication to My Pet?
Arthritis medication, whether it is a pill or a lotion, can poison pets. Only give medication under the supervision of your veterinarian.
What is the Treatment for Pet Arthritis?
There are often multiple things that help a pet with arthritis. Medication to help with pain and swelling includes painkillers and corticosteroids. Changing a pet’s diet to help reduce excess weight helps. Nutritional supplements can help, particularly glucosamine and chondroitin for dogs. Dogs can also benefit from Adequan injections. Sometimes, arthritic pets can be helped by alternative therapies like pet acupuncture, a TENS unit, or medical-massage. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary.
Can Pet Arthritis Be Cured?
Arthritis cannot be cured, but the pain and inflammation can be managed.
What Can I Do to Help My Arthritic Pet?
Make sure all of your smooth floors are covered in non-skid rugs. Block off the stairs when you cannot supervise your pet. Larger dogs need ramps to help get into vehicles. Make sure beds are placed out of the range of drafts. Get your pet a warm, soft bed that provides orthopedic support.
Get Help for Your Pet in Fernandina Beach, FL
If you have questions about pet arthritis or suspect that your cat or dog is affected by arthritis, our veterinarian at Amelia Pointe Animal Hospital & Daycare is here to help. We will answer any questions that you may have and provide the quality care that your pet needs to find relief. Call our team today at (904) 310-9990 or reach us through our website by using our online contact form.