Arthritis does not have a cure, but there are some things that you can do to reduce its risk and stop its progress. You can’t be able to reverse arthritis damages on the joint. The best thing that you can do for your dog is to take measures that will help reduce the chances of developing it. Here are some of the things that you can do to reduce the risk of arthritis in your aging canine friend:
1. Start a nutritionally sound diet early
Dogs that are obese or overweight are at high risk of developing arthritis. The extra body weight causes extra stress on the bones and joints, which may damage the cartilage tissues causing arthritis. Feeding your dog with a well-balanced diet and a healthy amount of food can help prevent obesity. How much food you are giving your dog should depend on its size and activity level. Older dogs do not need as much food as younger dogs that are still growing and highly active. You should talk with your veterinarian to determine how much food is safe for your dog.
To control your dog’s level of food intake and reduce the risk of obesity, you should avoid giving it too many treats. Making your dog’s mealtime exact and controlled can help keep it lean and healthy. Giving your dog treats will make it happy, and it is the best way of bonding, but you should only offer a reward when it accomplishes something. Also, make sure the treats you are using are small and healthy.
Recent studies are showing that giving your dog supplements can help boost its immunity and ability to fight diseases such as diabetes. Giving your dog glucosamine and other supplements for dog joints will reduce the chances of developing arthritis or stop its progress if your dog is already struggling with joint problems.
2. Exercise your dog the right way
To ensure proper growth of bones, puppies need certain kinds of dog exercises and at the right amount. The best workout should be with another pup because they will tire at the same time. Exposing your pup to swimming when it is still young will help reduce the risk of arthritis when it starts aging.
Frisbee and ball chasing should be for less than 15 minutes. Too much of this exercise will increase the risk of joint injuries. Walking your dog for 30 minutes every day is the best thing that you can do to make its joints keep moving. You should make sure the exercise does not cause stress on your dog’s joints. Exercising should stop when the dog starts appearing tired, sore, or in pain.
If your dog is unable to exercise because the joints are hurting, you should seek medical attention. Gentle exercises can help keep the joints limber and healthy and also help prevent gaining excess body weight that will add more stress to the hurting joints. A gentle massage and providing your dog with a heated bed can help prevent joint stiffness.
3. Keep the dog’s nail trimmed
Trimming your dog’s nail regularly can help keep your dog arthritis free. Long nails affect how your dog walks and can cause increased stress on the joints. You can trim your dog’s nails using a pair of dog nail clippers, but if you don’t know how to do it, your vet can help you. You can also look for a professional pet groomer in your area to trim your dog’s nails.
4. Keep an eye out for symptoms
Treating arthritis and preventing its progress is easy when it is in its early stages. Remember, there is no cure for arthritis, and you can’t also be able to reverse its effects. Catching the symptoms when it is at its early stages will help you manage it, prevent its symptoms from worsening, and keep your dog comfortable later in life. Some of the common early symptoms of arthritis that you should look for include:
- Lameness or limping
- Groaning when lying down and getting back up
- Muscle wasting
5. Talk with your veterinarian
If you want to know more about preventing arthritis in dogs, or you suspect your dog has this condition, you should speak with your veterinarian. The vet can recommend other methods that can help keep your dog safe and healthy. Seeking medical attention on time when your dog is struggling with arthritis can help you take measures that will help prevent its progress.