This article is shared with permission from our friends at Pet Guide.
As your dog gets older, he may start to slow down and his joints may become stiff. Arthritis is fairly common in older dogs and it isn’t always something you can effectively treat. Even if you can’t make your dog’s arthritis complete disappear, however, there are some things you can do to relieve his pain. Keep reading to learn more.
Natural Ways to Ease Arthritis in Dogs
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If your dog suffers from arthritis you should follow your veterinarian’s advice regarding treatment. In some cases, however, your dog may need a little bit of extra help to relieve his day-to-day pain.
One thing you should definitely do is take a second look at his diet. If your dog’s diet is heavy in carbohydrates, particularly low-quality grains like corn and wheat, it could be triggering inflammation that is contributing to his pain. A diet rich in lean protein and healthy omega fatty acids will help to reduce inflammation and mitigate your dog’s pain.
Another simple way to ease your dog’s pain is to give him glucosamine and chondroitin supplement – these supplements help to improve joint mobility, reduce stiffness, and relieve pain. If your dog continues to feel pain, consider taking him to an animal acupuncturist – this painless treatment has been shown to relieve numerous conditions in dogs.
At-Home Tips to Manage Your Dog’s Arthritis
In addition to improving your dog’s diet and giving him joint-supporting supplements, there are some simple changes you can make around the house to ease his pain. Here are some ideas:
- Switch to raised food and water bowls to reduce the strain on your dog’s back and neck.
- Put down carpet or runners on hardwood floors to give your dog more traction and stability.
- Give your dog a comfy bed to support his joints – memory foam is a great option.
- Keep your dog’s nails trimmed short so they don’t become overgrown and affect his gait.
- Use ramps or stairs to help your dog climb into bed or get into the back of the car.
- Try using heat packs to soothe stiffness or cold packs to ease inflammation.
Not only should you make the above accommodations for your dog, but you should also make an effort to keep him active. When your dog suffers from arthritis pain, you might assume that you should give him plenty of rest and limit his activity. While your dog does need his rest and you should avoid strenuous activity, keeping your dog mobile is important for arthritis management. Gentle activity like walking will help to keep his joints from getting too stiff and it will help him to maintain a healthy bodyweight. Swimming is another excellent form of exercise for older and arthritic dogs.
Though arthritis is common in older dogs, the symptoms can sometimes overlap wither other conditions so don’t try to self-diagnose your dog – always seek professional veterinary care. Your veterinarian will be able to diagnose the cause of your dog’s pain and help you understand it better so you can make changes to his lifestyle to help ease the pain and manage his condition.
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