Pet Talk: Ideas for Improving the Life of a Dog with Arthritis

When dogs age, they get certain ailments same as humans. Though you may feel like your dog would always remain the happy and active canine he or she has been since a young age, it’s normal for health issues to arise over the years. Depending on their lifestyle, whether or not they get the needed exercise, as well as their nutrition, sometimes these issues could be more serious.

Such is the case with the chronic degenerative joint disorder (DJD) otherwise known as arthritis. Getting the bad news your beloved furry friend has this disorder may come as a shock to you, and you may find yourself filled with worries right away. As it’s a problem that affects a dog’s mobility, i.e. its ability to run, walk, jump and play, it’s safe to say it affects its quality of life in general.

However, the good news is with proper management it won’t shorten your doggo’s lifespan, and you can help him or her out with this by providing adequate care. Here are some ideas on what you can do as a responsible and caring owner.

Acquire the Right Bed

This condition is associated with pain, tenderness, and stiffness with the joints which affects the speed of movement, so they’re the first signs you can expect to see when your Fido is suffering from it. Not surprisingly, even going about the days doing the simplest physical efforts like going to bed could be challenging. Luckily, you can help your pup’s soreness by choosing from the wide assortment of specialised orthopedic beds for dogs with arthritis.

The reason buying these types is a must, instead of your regular bed picks, has to do with the way they’re designed to ensure your pet’s utmost support, protection, and comfort for the bones and joints – specifically the elbows and hips. Unlike the typical beds, there’s particular attention to the choice of materials used to create these.

Starting from the base, it’s made of pet-friendly orthopedic foam that helps with thermoregulation knowing heat therapy is key in easing arthritis inflammation. Moreover, it’s useful for even weight distribution to relieve the pressure points too, and it moulds to your dog’s shape as it “remembers” it for utmost comfort. In addition, orthopedic dog beds also have soft faux fur covers that are removable and easy to clean, and bolsters for an extra dose of support that provides quality sleep.

Sure, these beds come at a price, but taking all of this into account you’d agree they make for a valuable purchase. In case you need other reasons as to why it’s a great idea to make them part of your basic pet supply, you won’t have to worry about painful itchy elbow calluses which may even get infected. Nor would you have to fret about the access every time your pup goes to sleep or rest.

Add Floor Traction

The orthopedic beds for dogs with arthritis aren’t the only helpful supplies your dog would benefit from – floors covered with the suitable mats are of great advantage too as they make for easy, pain-free walkability around the home. Floorings such as hardwood, tiles made of natural stones, and laminate may be beautiful but tend to be slippery.

This is especially true for dogs that have lost muscle mass, so carpets with underlay are suggested to protect your pet from accidents. They’re the ideal solution if your pup isn’t the type that’s patient with wearing special socks or shoes with grip. Don’t forget to add the needed protection to the stairs as well, either with a ramp or with stair treads depending on your home’s design.

Install Ramps

As your canine’s life becomes more challenging, to the point of not being able to jump into the car, get on your lovely fabric sofa , the porch or the deck, you could resort to assisting with a homemade sling, or even lifting him or her, but this may not always be the ideal solution. More so if your dog is on the heavy side or is a large breed. In which case, the key is to acquire the proper ramps that are designed to provide the desired traction in the form of rubber.

Mind the Weight

Improving your pet’s life with suitable furniture and accessories, from the orthopedic beds for dogs with arthritis to the carpets and ramps might come in handy but not that much if you don’t mind the weight too. Particularly when you don’t moderate the treats, or you allow him or her to eat when you’re not watching!

Maintaining the intake of calories is crucial because extra weight puts a strain on the bones and joints. Even if your pet doesn’t have a weight problem, it’s advisable to pay a visit to the vet’s and ask for some tips on how to keep the diet appropriate for the disorder, with the needed nutrients. The focus might be on omega 3 fatty acids, besides glucosamine, to relieve the aches and pains.