SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Lifestyle

November 1, 2013

Vet Connection: Arthritis is common in dogs and cats, too

(Continued)

In the early stages of arthritis, painful flare-ups may be common, and you may notice discomfort with joint movement, occasional limping and subtle changes in walk. As the disease progresses, you will notice pain with joint movement, persistent limping, visible changes in walk, difficulty rising and soreness after exercise. In the late stages, there will be significant, constant pain and pronounced changes in walk. Your dog may need assistance to rise, have restricted range of motion and muscle atrophy.

As the pain increases, your pet may exhibit aggression or hiding behavior, or might even lick or gnaw at the offending joint.

Luckily there are a number of ways to make your pet more comfortable. Moderate exercise is a great way for a dog to loosen up stiff joints. Swimming and a moderate walk are best; running will put more pressure (and pain) on the joints.

Weight control also is important. Those extra pounds limit movement and put added stress on joints. In addition to exercise, owners should check with their veterinarian for diet recommendations.

A soft, warm bed helps soothe aches and pains (many pet stores even sell orthopedic beds). Our hospital cat Tippy loves her warm heated bed. A ramp to help the dog in and out of the car or up the stairs will make a dog’s difficult climb or jump easier. Elevated bowls allow eating and drinking without stooping.

Aspirin, ibuprofen and other human medications should not be given to pets because they can lead to painful stomach ulcers.

Veterinarians now have excellent treatments available to help manage arthritis. There are pain medications that are formulated to avoid ulcers. Special diets that are specifically formulated for the arthritic pet are also available and can help immensely. There are injectable treatments that help stabilize the cartilage in the joint. Some veterinarians use acupuncture and laser treatment.

Osteoarthritis cannot be cured, but it can be managed with medication and tender, loving care. Working with a veterinarian, dog owners can improve their dog’s quality of life. You’d be surprised to see how the old dog can regain some of the vigor of its puppyhood.

 

 

 

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Lifestyle
  • misselwood_2 Rare, classic cars make an appearance at annual Endicott College show

    The original Concours d'Elegance was a fashion show on wheels. "It did start in 17th century France, where some of the aristocracy wanted to show off the fashions they were wearing," said Patrick Cornellison, chairman of the event. "Mainly women woul

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • twenties_3 Ipswich's Castle Hill braces for 1,000 at Roaring '20s Lawn Party

    The latest dance craze started in the 1930s. The Lindy Hop, which first flourished in the ballrooms of Harlem, is expected to draw hundreds of people to a dance floor at the Crane Estate this Sunday. Organized by Boston Swing Central, a dance club in

    July 24, 2014 4 Photos

  • kallyson North Shore entertainment calendar Good cause YARD SALE TO BENEFIT JIMMY FUND. Saturday, July 26, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., 11 Anna Drive, Danvers. Family yard sale with all proceeds benefiting the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk. WOOSHIE'S WARRIORS FUNDRAISER FOR MS. Sunday, July 27, 10 a.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • The reader's eye Name: Erika Torkildsen Hometown: Beverly Description: "I took this at the Salem Common around a park where I noticed a ripped basketball net amid the blue sky. Instead of taking the picture from my original view, I tipped the camera up from under the

    July 24, 2014

  • shakespeare Good cause The Bard comes alive on Misery Island Join Sea Station for its inaugural performance of "The Tempest Trials," a Shakespearean festival on Salem's Misery Island, on Saturday from noon to 4:15 p.m. The festival features actors of all ages participating

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Horoscope Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) -- Your goals and current lifestyle need a little adjustment. Be receptive to new ideas, and make a change if you want to feel better about the direction you are heading in. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) -- Your leadership qualities

    July 24, 2014

  • Dear Abby: Girl and cousin both need counseling after assault Dear Abby: My granddaughter "Cindy," age 2, was being watched by her mommy's ex-sister-in-law and her sons. Cindy went to her mommy and said, "Bubby hurt me." Bubby is what she calls her 10-year-old cousin. Her mother called the police. A policeman s

    July 23, 2014

  • Wednesday's Best Bets Best Bets for Wednesday, July 23

    Looking for something to do today? Here are The Salem News' Best Bets:

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dear Abby: Younger couples weigh in on how they handle money Dear Readers: On April 11, I printed a letter from "Wondering in Washington," a man asking why young men in general today have the attitude that "any money I earn is mine" in a marriage or live-in situation. He said when he married, he and his wife c

    July 22, 2014

  • Dear Abby: Dating scene is frustrating for strong young woman Dear Abby: I am a young woman hoping to find "The One." But I have come to realize that I'm not the normal female. I don't get manicures or go shopping. (I hate shopping!) When I meet a guy, he likes that I'm "me," but if we get serious, then I'm eit

    July 21, 2014

NDN Video
Comments Tracker