Just like humans, dogs are at risk of developing Osteoarthritis or as it’s also known, Degenerative Joint Disease. Osteoarthritis is a condition that deteriorates the cartilage that surrounds the joints. It is found to be long term and progressive. Symptoms of Osteoarthritis can be noticed rather easily and should be attended to right away.
It can develop either from an injury or a developmental problem. Since service dogs and working dogs both have increased levels of activity, they are more likely to develop Osteoarthritis. You’ll first start to notice your dog losing interest in doing its normal day to day activities like going for a walk or playing. It will then become increasingly more noticeable if your dog were to develop this disease as time passes. They’ll begin to limp and seem to have some sort of discomfort while getting up off the floor or bed. When your dog is in the later stages of Osteoarthritis, they’ll be in constant pain if nothing is done to help treat the disease. There are certain breeds that are more susceptible to developing Osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is found to be more common in bigger dogs than smaller dogs. Dog breeds that range from 50-90 pounds would be considered large and are at greater risk of developing Osteoarthritis. Another factor that contributes to dogs developing this disease is their age. Dogs who are seniors (7+ years) are 65% more likely to develop the disease. If you have found your dog to have symptoms of Osteoarthritis there are a number of things you as a dog owner can do to help maintain your dogs’ pain and reduce the inflammation.
Although there hasn’t been a cure for this disease, there are things that can be done to help your dog have a much better quality of life. Joint supplements are available to help reduce inflammation in the joints. Reducing inflammation in the joints slows down the progression of further damage to your dog’s joints. The supplements also help heal the joints and allow for the surrounding cartilage to retain as much water as needed. Having healthy cartilage is crucial because it’s what cushions the joint. The main ingredients that supplements have are Glucosamine and Chondroitin. To treat pain Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory drugs or (NSAIDs) are also available. However, continued use of these drugs can have considerable side effects, mainly with dogs that already have a weak liver or a kidney infection.
There are several types of therapy that can either help with pain, replace the joint, or replace the cartilage. Overall maintaining a healthy weight helps avoid any damage that can be done to your dog’s joints. Making sure your dog gets its daily dose of exercise helps keep their joints healthy.
At the end of the day your dog wants to get home to a comfortable mattress that helps relieve and reduce their joint pain. Our extra thick Giant 7” Rectangle Orthopedic or Giant Bolster 7” Orthopedic mattresses do just exactly that. They’re made to support the extra weight while still providing you with the best quality dog mattress you could find. For smaller dogs we recommend taking a look at our Orthopedic Dog Beds, they come in a variety of sizes and cost less than our Giant size.