5 Tips to Improve Joint Health for Dogs
- Old age
- Excess weight
- Stress on joints from excess physical activity (this is especially common with working and sporting dogs)
What are the Symptoms of Poor Joint Health for Dogs?
- Difficulty standing up or lying down
- Stiff, slow walking or limping
- Lethargy, including no longer enjoying their favorite games or toys
- Increased irritability or crying when touched
Some breeds are more prone to having joint problems than others. Joint health for dogs typically larger breeds such as Great Danes, Newfoundlands, and Rottweilers, however some smaller breeds like the Dachshund can be predisposed to joint problems as well. If you notice any of the symptoms listed above, make an appointment to see your vet. They can advise you on the best course of action for your situation.
Top Tips For Improving Joint Health for Dogs:1. Weight Management
Glucosamine and chondroitin are imperative to improving joint health. Glucosamine is a natural compound that helps relieve pain and stimulates the growth of cartilage cells (the cushioning between joints). Chondroitin is a chemical found in cartilage that helps inhibit the cells that damage cartilage. Manufacturers of these supplements often combine the two ingredients for the best results. There are of course other supplements that can help improve joint health in dogs but these two are the foundations of most of them. Talk to your vet before making any changes to your dog’s diet.
When anyone, human, canine, or otherwise, is experiencing joint pain, climbing on or off furniture can be incredibly difficult. For pets with chronic joint pain, consider getting an easy-access bed without bolsters around all sides they have to climb over. If your dog typically sleeps in your bed with you, try using a ramp so that rather than jumping up and off the bed, which puts stress on the joints, your dog can simply walk up or down the ramp.