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Is your beloved senior dog having a bit of trouble getting around lately? Maybe he's not as spry as he used to be when jumping on the couch or going up and down stairs. If that's the case, it's possible he's experiencing the effects of arthritis.
Arthritis is a common condition that may develop from a lifetime of fun and active adventures or as a result of other health issues like diabetes or obesity. Though it can cause discomfort in the legs, hips, and back, with the right care and management, your furry friend can continue to live a happy and active life.
If you suspect your furry friend may be experiencing arthritis, a visit to the vet is the next step. Your vet can perform some tests such as radiographic and blood tests to confirm the diagnosis. From there, your vet will work with you to develop the best treatment plan to keep your dog comfortable and pain-free. There are several options available, so you and your vet can find the perfect fit for your dog.
Here are six great ways to support your furry friend and make sure they're comfortable while living with arthritis:
Consult Your Veterinarian
If you notice your dog struggling to stand up, having a narrower stance, or having difficulty jumping on the couch or going up stairs, it may be a sign of arthritis. Don't worry, your vet can help! By making an appointment, your vet will ask questions about your dog's condition and run some tests to confirm the diagnosis.
If your dog is diagnosed with arthritis, your vet will create a personalized management plan that's tailored to your furry friend's age, metabolic functions, and the stage of the disease. There are several treatment options available such as:
Anti-inflammatory medication is a great way to reduce inflammation in the joints and ease pain. When it comes to medication, it's important to follow your vet's guidance and not give your dog over-the-counter human drugs like Ibuprofen or Naproxen as they can cause harm. Stick to the medication prescribed by your vet for the best results.
Dietary supplements and foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and natural antioxidants can be extremely beneficial for dogs with arthritis. Supplements and foods containing glucosamine and chondroitin sulfates can also be helpful, as some studies have shown they may be effective in producing cartilage. It's always a good idea to consult with your vet to find the best supplement options for your furry friend.
Provide Them With A Comfortable Bed
Rest is crucial for your furry friend, especially when they are tired. Good sleep can soothe their pain and make them feel refreshed.
To ensure your dog gets a good nap, you can invest in a proper orthopedic bed with memory foam that supports their joints. This type of bed is especially useful for thin dogs whose bones might otherwise rub uncomfortably on rough surfaces.
These beds are conveniently available online and in pet stores, and will give your dog the comfort they need to get a good night's sleep.
Install Ramps And Slip-Free Flooring
To make it easier for your furry friend to navigate your home, you can install ramps on staircases and carpets. These ramps will ensure that your pet doesn't slip and can walk smoothly even on stairs. This will keep them steady on their feet, help them navigate through difficult or slippery surfaces, and prevent injury to their already fragile joints. It's a small step that can make a big difference in your pet's mobility and comfort.
As our furry friends age, they may have difficulty keeping themselves as clean as they used to. That's where we come in! Regularly brushing their coats and giving them warm baths not only keeps them looking and smelling their best, but it also helps prevent infections.
It's a small act of love that can make a big difference in the overall health and well-being of our senior dogs.
With a little extra care and attention, your dog can continue to enjoy all the activities they love, and you can cherish many more happy moments together.
We'd love to know your thoughts. Let us know in the comments below.
Original story / article courtesy of Dogs Best Life