Arthritis is one of the most common ailments that our adult and senior pets face. It can be a source of chronic pain and can very negatively change their quality of life.
We often overlook it because we naturally assume that our pets will slow down as they age. The question is, are they moving less due to age, or is it really because they are in pain?
Arthritis can affect any joint, but most commonly is seen in hips, knees, and elbows. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of this disease and affects the cartilage, which leads to pain, swelling, and inflammation. It can lead to a smaller range of motion, decreased mobility, muscle loss, and limping. Here are the signs of arthritis in your pet:
- Reluctance to go for walks or engage in playtimes
- Having difficulty getting up or using the stairs
- Crying out for seemingly no reason
- Muscle atrophy due to lack of activity
- Licking, chewing, or biting their bodies (especially joints)
If your older pet is having any of these problems, take them to the vet and talk about what you can do to make them more comfortable. Between weight management, pain medications, anti-inflammatory drugs, supplements, physical therapy, acupuncture, and laser treatments, there are a lot of options to manage the pain in our older pets.
Let’s be sure our pet’s golden years are happy, fun, healthy, and pain-free!