Arthritis is a very common issue in older dogs. In fact, as many as 80 percent of pups over the age of 8 suffer from this painful condition. While arthritis isn’t curable, there are many different treatments that can help manage it. Of course, medical treatments are always the most effective when a condition is caught early. In this article, a local vet lists some early warning signs of arthritis.
Limping is often the first indication that something is wrong. When Fido’s arthritis is in the early stages, he may only limp briefly, usually when he first gets up. As it progresses, that limp will become more persistent.
This one is a big red flag! Arthritis can make it difficult for your canine companion to do his favorite things, such as running after balls, jumping for Frisbees, or doing those adorable play bows happy pooches do. If Fido’s toys are gathering dust, there may be something going on.
Another thing you may notice is your furry buddy! having trouble getting comfortable. (Note: if you know or suspect that Fido has arthritis, get him a good doggy bed, so he can sleep well. Orthopedic dog beds are a great option here.)
When your canine pal was a puppy, he was probably very lithe and energetic. For example, he may have jumped around to face you, or bounced for joy when you get home. Dogs with arthritis will often move in a much slower, stiffer manner.
Your cute pet may just not feel very happy or affectionate if he is in pain, and may spend more time by himself. That ‘sad puppy’ look can also be a warning sign. If Fido seems uncharacteristically morose, it could be an indication that something is going on with him.
Fido may take longer to get up or down than he used to. He may also have trouble climbing stairs and/or getting in and out of the car. (Note: pet ramps can often help with this.)
Our furry friends often persistently lick or nibble at sore spots. You may notice Fido constantly worrying at a specific area, usually the paws, legs, or the base of his tail.
Please contact us if ever we can be of assistance. As your veterinary clinic, we’re here to help!