Arthritis is a degenerative disease which most often results from everyday wear and tear on the joints.
This disease is a common issue found in dogs and cats and does not only affect our older companions, but can also be seen in very young pets. So how can we identify if our furry friends are experiencing this uncomfortable chronic illness?
The signs of arthritis in your dog may be subtle. You may think that as your pet matures it becomes less active, but in fact they may be experiencing joint pain due to arthritis. Some signs and symptoms to watch out for include:
- Lethargy and stiffness (especially after rest)
- Difficulty rising from rest
- Swelling or heat within the joint
- Urinating indoors
- Pain when being touched
- Less desire to be active (especially jumping)
- Nervous or aggressive changes in behaviour
There are two primary types of arthritis found in dogs and cats. The first form of the disease is Degenerative Joint Disease which occurs when there is friction between the bones due to deteriorating cartilage. The second is Inflammatory Joint Disease which can be hereditary, or caused by an infection.
The fact that this is such a common ailment in our pets also provides a silver lining, which is a wide array of knowledge and treatments. Natural supplements especially solutions with anti-inflammatory properties can be a huge help for your pets. In some more serious cases your veterinarian may discuss steroids as another option.