Winter months are difficult for dogs and cats who have arthritis. The colder months decrease the amount of blood to the area and this in turn decreases the body’s ability to remove toxic waste as well as decreases the body’s ability to get its natural anti-inflammatory agents (anti prostaglandins etc) into the area. The surrounding tissues becomes tight and less subtle, the joint fluid increases its “thickness” and the pain receptors on the bones become more sensitized.
End result – the animal is in pain, and it takes some time before the animal can freely move the damaged joint in such a way as to give normal mobility without intense pain.
There are a number of things an owner can do to assist the animal. The owner can keep the animal warm at night with the use of artificial coats, placing blankets over the animal when it is cold, allow the animal to sleep inside the house at night, keeping the bed firm and not too high off the ground. The owner can also not ask the animal to walk early on a cold morning, allow the animals some time to “warm up the joints” before exercise. Owners who have animals who are overweight should endeavour to get some of the excess weight off the animal (come and have a talk to our staff – there is special food to achieve this result).
There is a wide range of nutritional supplements that can be fed to the animal – we recommend Glyde or 4 Cyte which, in our opinion, are the 2 best products on the market. There are also special foods with nutritional supplements to assist animals with arthritis – both Royal Canin and Hills produce these foods, and our receptionist can show you the different foods as well as discuss the daily costs of feeding these foods.
BUT the biggest aid to arthritis is with the use of medication called CARTROPHEN. There is no doubt in my mind of the excellent results that Cartrophen achieves. This is a form of medication that only a vet can give – it involves an injection of the medication under the skin of the dog or cat once a week for 4 weeks and then as necessary depending on the amount of degeneration the animal has in its joints.
My advice to all owners who are concerned with their animals suffering from arthritis is to come in and discuss the many different methods and medications that are available to assist your animal. No animal needs to suffer the pain and discomfort from arthritis. Contact us on 41531399 and “have a talk”.