7 Common Signs of Arthritis in Dogs

7 Common Signs of Arthritis in Dogs

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09:10:00 25/10/2017

 

                   

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Just like the ailment that is causing millions of people to suffer, arthritis is also common in dogs. Many dog owners do not pay attention to the fact that their pets are ageing. With ageing, degeneration begins to occur in their bones. Arthritis makes your dog feel pain and discomfort. Since your pet cannot clearly tell you what he is feeling, it is best to know the signs and symptoms of dog arthritis. With this, you can observe your dog and monitor his health.

Here are the 7 common signs of arthritis in dogs that you should look out for:

Avoid Movement

Do you see your dog becoming reluctant to leave his usual spot? Oftentimes, slowing down is common to a senior dog. So, most owners think that their ageing dog is just too tired to move.

Also, many pet owners think that if their dogs are in pain, then they would do certain noises to make their discomfort known. But, it is not always the case with arthritis. One of the tell-tale signs and symptoms of dog arthritis is reluctance to move. Oftentimes, this behaviour is observed during the initial stages of the illness.

One of the tell-tale signs and symptoms of dog arthritis is reluctance to move

Increase in Weight

One of the signs and symptoms of dog arthritis is weight gain. A dog that has arthritis has a tendency to be disinterested in playing and doing his regular activities. In such case, the dog starts to gain weight due to lack of physical activities.

However, gaining weight can only make the affected joints even more painful, as the extra weight puts more strain on the joints. Encouraging your dog to do some simple exercises can prevent its weight to increase. It also keeps the muscles to be toned, which can provide relief to the affected joints.

A dog that has arthritis tends to be disinterested in playing and doing his regular activities so he starts to gain weight 

Change in Behavior

A dog with arthritis will likely become aggressive and irritable. Even if you have a calm dog, he will show some aggression if he is in pain, especially if someone tries to touch him. This change in personality is one of the common signs and symptoms of dog arthritis.

Make sure that you continue to show your love and care for your four-legged friend, as the pain of arthritis can lead to depression in dogs. Motivate your pet to keep on interacting with the family so he will maintain his interest in life.

Avoid Particular Floors

A dog with arthritis tends to avoid using the stairs. Your dog may not want to go up the stairs anymore when it was his favourite thing to do before. On the other hand, your dog probably needs some coaxing to go down the stairs.

A dog with arthritis tends to avoid using the stairs

Observe the pattern of your pet with regard to using the stairs. This could be an indication of arthritis in the elbows or shoulders. The hips could also be affected as most of the weight go to that part when your dog gains weight. In that case, jumping up the stairs is not exciting for your dog any longer.

Adjust Posture

Do you see your dog a bit awkward when positioning his body? A dog that is experiencing some joint pains tends to adjust his posture in order to alleviate the pain. Is your dog holding his stomach strangely? Arthritis could be the culprit. In addition, observe if your dog positions his back a bit lower. The changes can be minor, but if you know your pet well enough, you can pick the changes easily.

A dog that is experiencing some joint pains tends to adjust his posture in order to alleviate the pain

Changes in Gait

Observe if your dog seems to have a stiff or bunny hopping gait. The changes in gait are usually noticeable when your dog stands up after resting for a long time. If there is lameness in your dog, he may have already developed arthritis. This symptom is typically noticeable in the advanced stages of arthritis.

If there is lameness in your dog, he may have already developed arthritis

Joint Inflammation

Swollen and tender joints occur when there are wear and tear. The cartilage suffers from degeneration, which causes fluid build-up and joint inflammation. Feel the body of your dog if there is some tenderness around the joint cartilage. The affected joint may also bring about a bony growth. The poor dog may also have a deformed joint. Do not be surprised if your dog does not allow you to touch his legs because it is quite painful.

Conclusion

Dogs are the same with humans in terms of ageing. Their body will age and experience wear and tear. It seems that ageing and arthritis go hand and hand. However, bigger breeds of dogs are more prone to arthritis than their smaller counterparts. Watch out for the common signs and symptoms of dog arthritis so that you can find ways to ease the pain and treat the disease early on. Make sure to visit the vet so your dog will receive the proper treatment as your dog will depend on you to help him with this condition.