Office hours: Please note ours may vary on a day-to-day basis. Monday/Wednesday/Friday 8a-10p (Last Appointment 9pm) – Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday 8a-4p (Last Appointment 3pm) – Lunch 12p-1pm (Office closed)

  • How to Improve the Joint Health in Your Dog

    We all want what’s best for our pets, but it can become challenging to care for them as health issues arise. It can be heartbreaking to realize that your pup isn’t as spry as he used to be, and very often this issue can be attributed to a health concern, such as diminished joint function. Joint problems in dogs are highly common, and even more common in certain breeds or sizes of dogs. In this article, we’ll go over some basic information about your dog’s joint health and what you can do to keep them feeling young for years to come.

    Dog Joint Health

    Signs that your pup may be having joint issues

    Since it can be tough to try to figure out what your pet may be feeling or experiencing, it’s important to keep an eye out for any signs that they may have some joint pain or discomfort. These are the most common signs to look out for in your pet if he or she begins to experience diminished joint health.

    • Decreased overall level of activity
    • Difficulty standing up from laying or sitting
    • Gets tired after walking short distances
    • Trouble walking up stairs
    • Difficulty getting into the car

    It’s important to note that many of these symptoms could be related to other issues, like depression, torn ligaments, or other health concerns. However, if you notice any of these symptoms in your pet, it is essential to bring them to your veterinarian for a check-up right away.

    What causes diminished joint health in dogs?

    There are a number of reasons why our dogs experience diminished joint health, and many of them are out of our control, unfortunately. However, it is good to know if your pet is at a heightened risk of running into orthopedic problems.

    • Size
    • Weight
    • Breed
    • Age
    • Genetics

    Certain genetic markers are correlated to joint health issues, as can be found in certain breeds of dogs like Rottweilers and other bully breeds. Furthermore, larger, heavier dogs are at a higher risk for joint issues, as there is more weight and therefore pressure and strain on the joints than in smaller dogs.

    Ways to treat joint issues

    It’s important to take the time to consider your options for treating your dog’s joint health problems, as the longer the problem persists the more at risk they are for tearing ligaments or experiencing other joint-related injuries. These are some of the most common treatment methods for joint pain or attempting to reverse diminished joint health:

    • Surgery
    • Changes to diet
    • Strength-building exercises
    • Medications
    • Supplements

    Of course, surgery is a last-resort option for most pet owners; however, it may be the best solution for your pet. It’s important to get a few opinions from veterinarians you trust near you so that you can make the most informed decision regarding your pet’s health. In other cases, changes to diet, adding pain-management medications to your pet’s daily regimen, or giving your dog supplements such as fish oil have shown to be helpful in improving joint health in pets.

    How you can promote joint health in your own dog

    We all want our pets to be happy, healthy, and full of energy. It helps to know more about your dog’s breed and predispositions they may have to joint issues later on. In these cases, preventive measures are important to put in place. Here are some other guidelines to help you get your pet’s health back on track:

    • Collaborate with a trusted veterinarian
    • Come up with a individualized plan for treating your pet
    • Limit your pet’s activity until a treatment plan can be put in place
    • Follow through with any recommendations your vet gives

    Dog Swimming

    Here at Dr. Ron’s Animal Hospital & Emergency, treating orthopedic issues like diminished joint function is a common practice. Families and pet owners from all over the areas of Simi Valley, Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, Chatsworth, and other cities nearby Ventura County, CA, have been bringing their pets to us to help treat joint problems, as we provide our clients with highly individualized treatment plans, including preventive care to keep joint issues at bay for as long as possible. If you’ve noticed that your pet is experiencing symptoms of joint pain, please contact us to schedule a check-up and help you come up with a treatment plan that works for both you and your pet.

    posted on July 22, 2018 at 2:11 pm by Doctor Ron