America is home to 49 million pet dogs.
German shepherds, Rottweilers, Great Danes, Labrador Retrievers, and Saint Bernards can be some of the most rewarding dog breeds to own. However, they’re also the most likely to have joint problems as they age.
If you’re a proud dog owner, and you want to make sure your pup has the best life possible, then this article is for you. Whether you own a large breed or a toy poodle, your dog can benefit from proactive joint pain relief.
Read on to learn everything you don’t know, but should, about dog joint pain.
Different Types of Joint Pain
There are two types of dog joint pain: developmental and degenerative. Developmental joint problems are there from birth.
Usually, joint developmental issues are going to be something genetic that makes it difficult for the dog joints to develop the way they’re supposed to. For instance, hip dysplasia could be a type of joint developmental issue.
There are also degenerative joint issues. Degenerative joint problems occur from everyday use. Repetitive moments can wear down your dog’s cartilage and increase the risk of injuring their tendons.
Sometimes degenerative joint issues arise after a stress fracture or as a result of osteoarthritis. However, it’s common for larger dogs to experience these problems naturally as they age.
Symptoms of Problems With Dog Joints
How can you tell if your dog is experiencing joint pain? There are a few key signs that you’ll want to keep an eye out for.
For one, if your dog is usually energetic and they begin acting lethargic throughout the day, it could be a sign of joint pain. It could also be a sign of other medical conditions, so you’ll definitely want to talk to your vet to get to the root cause.
Other signs of joint pain include limping, stiffness, irritability, and loss of appetite. If you notice that your dog’s having trouble walking naturally, it could also be a joint problem.
Supplements for Joint Dog Care
There are a lot of joint supplements on the canine market that claims to have great results. But are they worth your money? It depends on the quality of the supplements you’re buying.
Supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil tend to be the best. Other ingredients to look for include glucosamine hydrochloride and chondroitin.
To ensure you’re buying a quality product, you’ll want to talk to your vet about what brands they recommend. They might even be able to write you a prescription for an extra-strength supplement that can help eradicate joint pain once and for all.
You could look into cbd dog chews or cbd dog treats for joint pain too. CBD won’t get your dog high, but it can help them feel better. There are also a lot of therapeutic foods that use special formulas to help ease the inflammation.
Best Foods for Your Dog’s Joint Pain
Did you know that dogs can eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables? You’ll have to double-check which fruits and vegetables are safe before feeding them to your dog.
For instance, apples are a sweet, nutritious snack that your dog can safely enjoy. Packed with vitamin A and vitamin c, apples are the perfect way to reduce inflammation and increase mobility. Apples are also antioxidants, just like blueberries.
Blueberries are another fruit that is great for older dogs. Full of fiber and nutrients, they’ll be able to give your dog the boost they need.
Blueberries won’t just help with joint pain; they’re also great for brain health. You may notice that Fido starts getting a little bit smarter when you feed them blueberries.
As far as vegetables go, cabbage is always great food to add to your dog’s meal every single day. Cabbage has a lot of natural chemicals that can eliminate inflammation. It’s also full of minerals and vitamins.
You can safely feed your dog around 1/8 cup of cabbage for 20 lb of their body weight on a daily basis. Another great vegetable is celery since it also contains anti-inflammatory compounds.
Celery can help decrease any swelling in your dog’s joints, making it easier for them to move around. It’s up to you how you want to serve the celery to your dog.
Give it to them as a whole stick, slice it up, or cook it a little. You won’t want to serve celery every day, though. Instead, save it as a fun treat.
Preventing Joint Pain
So far, we’ve been discussing different ways to treat your dog’s joint pain. But what about methods that can help you prevent it from occurring in the first place?
As we mentioned earlier, sometimes joint issues are genetic. So you won’t always be able to prevent them from occurring. However, with that being said, there are still a lot of things you can do to give your dog the best chance at a pain-free life.
Along with giving them a nutritionally sound diet, it’s also a good idea to take your dog to the vet regularly. Taking your dog to the vet twice a year for comprehensive examinations can help detect early signs of arthritis. Your vet will also be able to inform you of any other issues your dog might be struggling with, so they can get the care they need right away.
Finally, make sure you’re exercising your dog the right way. If they’re running on hard surfaces too much, it can have a negative impact on their hip joints. Instead, try exposing your dog to impact-free sports swimming.
Introducing young dogs to water early on will make it more likely that they’ll enjoy swimming as a senior. It’s also a good idea to exercise your dog a little bit every day, rather than trying to cram in all of the activity on the weekend. So take it easy on the dog parks.
Overcoming Dog Joint Pain
Now that you know the best tips for alleviating dog joint pain, you can take action to give your pup the best life possible. Take a moment today to evaluate your dog’s daily diet.
Does it contain the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that your pup needs to be pain-free? If not, do something about it. Talk to your vet about the best dog food brands, or consider making your own blend of dog food.
Since you’re already taking the time to invest in your dog’s nutrition, why stop here? Look around the rest of our website for more insightful tips.