Arthritis – The things you can do at home to help your pet
As already explained in previous articles – arthritis is an inflammatory condition of the joints in your pet.
This inflammation can be temporary or permanent, but in all cases the inflammatory response is self-propagating.
It is well recognised that joints ‘freeze up’ when cold and that when the joint or your pet ‘warms up’ then the pain seems to become less.
Some things that you can do to help your arthritis affected animal are;
- Exercising your pet every day by walking on the soft ground and always on a lead. It is important that you do not allow your pet to run for long distances (especially on hard ground)
- Keep your pet’s weight under control, as overweight pets will ALWAYS have problems with arthritis
- Minimise a number of times your pet has to go either up or down stairs
- Minimise a number of times your pet has to jump from high objects ie utes, couches etc. The impact from landing on the ground sends shock waves through your pet that increases the instability of the affected joints
- Keep your pet on a soft bed at night – do not allow them to sleep on concrete or hard cold surfaces
- Use blankets and/or a hot water bottle to keep your pet and their sore joints warm during winter
- Allow them to sleep in in the mornings and go for walks during the warmer part of the day
- Coats are great in winter for dogs, use them during the night and/or day to help keep them warm
- Natural antioxidants such as vitamin C are useful in some cases but remember the dose varies depending on the animal. Make sure you contact us first
- Minimise the use of commercial dog food – In my opinion, your pet will do much better on white meat rather than red meat. Commercial foods definately will increase the inflammatory response in the affected joints