How to Take Care of an Old Dog with Arthritis

As your dog gets older it will show all the symptoms a human does. They lose the spring in their steps, they no longer jump as high as they used to and even lying down is accompanied by a big ol’ groan. You have to face the fact, your best friend is not as young as before and they are most likely reaching that ripe old age.

Fortunately, medicine has developed in a way that it allows us to treat our dogs to a point that it extends their lives. Taking your dog to a vet regularly will ensure them to live a long and healthy life. But a longer life does come with some consequences.

As the dogs age they are more likely to develop certain diseases and conditions that only come with age. Degenerative joint disease and osteoarthritis are the most common afflictions that dogs may have. Actually, there are also several types of canine arthritis that dogs may get, but the most common one is the degenerative one which comes with age.

Once this happens, the only thing that you can do is to take your dog to the vet. Unfortunately, there is no miracle cure for these conditions and the only way to treat this is through a combination of remedies and physical exercises. Here are some ways that you can help and threat your arthritic dog.

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Doggy Massages

One of the ways of treating your dog is through bodywork, namely massages. If you work with your dog and apply stimulating massages that will in turn help with the blood flow will help your dog’s atrophying muscles.

In fact, there are many canine therapists that do this sort of work and can even show you how to do some exercises with your dog. It is also important to make the affected area warm but not too much.

Provide a Comfortable Bed

One of the most important things that you need to keep your dog healthy is a good bed. But once you have an old dog you should consider getting a specific type of bed. If your dog is suffering from arthritis you should get the best orthopedic bed for it.

These type of beds are specifically made for older dogs and are more comfortable than others. They are made with specific memory foam which makes lying down much easier for the dog. These type of orthopedic beds are used for injured dogs and younger dogs as well but are best for old, arthritic dogs. It will lessen their pain and it will make lying down and moving about much easier for them.

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Medicine is Still Needed

Various kinds of supplements are necessary for an arthritic dog. Once your loving pet starts having these kinds of trouble, you should consider adding some kind of supplements to its diet. This usually goes along with other forms of treatments.

These supplements contain chondroitin, glucosamine, MSM, and green-lipped mussel that help with joint pain and deteriorating cartilage. Vets often prescribe a small dose of these supplements for an old dog. It is still not determined whether young dogs should take these supplements in advance as a way to prevent these types of problems.

Keep Exercising

A dog should always exercise, no matter its age. But it becomes much more important to keep your dog busy when it gets old and especially when they start having problems with arthritis. First of all, regular walks and play dates with a younger dog will ensure that they do not get arthritic problems and cartilage deterioration early on. But when your old dog starts having these kinds of problems you should continue to exercise with it in order to help it.

Of course, older dogs cannot go on for too long and are not capable of very hard exercises. They are not as they used to be. But either way, you should keep doing it at the dog’s pace. A few short walks are sometimes enough. The important thing is is not to allow your dog to become too lazy and ensure that they keep going as long as they can.

Alternative Medicine

If you are willing to try it, there are some forms of alternative medicine that you can try. Once your dog starts having problems with arthritis you can help it by subjecting it to acupuncture. There are various cases where the ancient Chinese traditional way of healing helped people.

It is also useful with dogs as well and can help them lessen the pain in these types of situations. It also comes with a herb and aromatherapy which amplifies the effects.

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