Signs your dog may have arthritis:
Difficulty getting up, sitting down, or trouble squatting to urinate/defecate
Licking or chewing at the source of pain
Behavioral changes like decrease appetite, suddenly irritable, accidents in the house
Can’t seem to get comfortable
How to Create a Comfortable Environment for your Arthritic Dog
- Go for daily walks: after laying down for a while, your pet may get stiff and achy, taking them on a short walk each day will help keep those joints warmed up and not so stiff. It will also help keep those extra pounds off, which is a huge cause of arthritic progression.
- Healthy diet: Don’t overfeed! This also plays into your pet being overweight & having too much pressure on those joints.
- Incorporating omegas in your pets food may help reduce inflammation and results in some joint pain relief.
- Swim! This is a great way to keep the pressure off their joints, but also allowing them to move & get some exercise.
- Raising water and food bowls can reduce strain in the neck or back of an arthritic dog; some arthritic dogs may not eat or drink as much as they should without this sort of accommodation.
- Put carpet runners on hardwood floors. Try to prevent your dog from slipping, as this creates unwanted stress on the entire body.
- Provide a soft, supportive bed.
- Keep nails trimmed. If nails are too long they can change the gait on the dog, causing skeletal changes and arthritis in the foot/toes.
- Use a ramp where needed (for helping your dog get in and out of the car, on to your bed or sofa, etc.). This will reduce strain on his knees and hips.
- If your dog is having trouble getting up or walking on his own, check out slings, rear-end harnesses, wheelchairs, or carts to help keep him moving.