Post # 1
My dog has now moved into her senior years and in the past year has developed a mild arthritis. It doesn’t bother her all the time but definitely flares up at times. Well here in Colorado we just got a snow storm. I noticed since the temperature has dropped it seems to be bothering her. I don’t like to keep her on the arthritis medicine all the time.
Does anyone have any recommendations to things I can do to help her?
Post # 3
Your vet would have to write a prescription, but I use rimadyl as needed, and supplement fish oil tablets in our dog’s food. He is a great dane who is almost 6 years old, so it’s really typical that he would have some hip arthritis at this point. We give him a dose of the rimadyl in the morning if we are going out on a hike or something strenuous, and we give him another the next morning to help with any soreness. I think once you start using it regularly the dog will need lab work from time to time to check their liver… but that is up to the individual veterinarian.
Post # 4
Poor doggie. When it gets nicer out maybe you can take her swimming. I think fish oil would be a good idea. Also, maybe a memory foam bed.
Post # 5
Have you ever considered holistic vets?
I switched to a holistic vet about 6 months ago. Absolutely love the care (and this new vet so much!!) Just research it a bit before you choose someone. My vet is a DVM but 10 years ago she started studying holistic medicine. It’s amazing. Western medicine only treats symptoms, but holstic medicine uses Chinese herbs and supplements to actually prevent disease.
Post # 6
My english bulldog is almost 10 and has arthritis in his back legs. Here’s what we do to help:
- Orthopedic foam beds. I get the most comfortable ones (and I actually test them out by laying in them first) and replace them as needed.
- Fish oil capsule in his food. You don’t need a doggie kind, the people-versions are fine. I give 1 pill at dinner, he doesn’t even notice its in the kibble and gobbles it down.
- Glucosamine/chondroitin tablets. My dog hated taking these and I felt like wrapping them in bread or PB was too much fat for everyday, so I ground it up in my food processor. I now add some of the ground tablet into a yogurt/water mixture and he gobbles it up. 1x a day, though sometimes I forget 🙁
- Massage his legs when he’s waking up. When he stays in 1 position too long, I notice that he’ll hobble a bit after getting up. I massage his hips, thighs, and calf (or whatever the dog version of a calf is) and it helps him a lot.
Post # 7
@DaneLady: We are perscribed Rimadyl as well. But I only give it to her when we are going camping or a hike. My Vet said that is okay for now, but if it get progressivly worse we will need to start using it more often. I just hate to see her in such pain. I am worried about the effect on her liver though
Post # 8
@cbee: I wish she liked water. She is a lab that hates water….silly dog
Post # 9
@BooRadley: Thanks for the advice. We have been looking into an orthopedic bed for her. I give her doggy massages almost every day. 1) becuase I like to love on her and 2) I think it makes her feel better. I have been giving her fish oil pills for awhile and she loves them. I will have to start her on the Glucosamine/chondroitin. Thanks
Post # 10
Hey lady, my 11 year old greyhound is pretty rusty today too…what I do to keep him happy without medicine is keep him warm, the arthritis is pretty contained in his front ankles, so a long sleeve sweatshirt keeps those touchy joints toasty warm….He has an orthopedic bed with blankets on every floor, and if I have the time I throw a towel in the dryer and drop it over the top of his legs…I set aside the time to rub him down from head to toe with firm, gentle pressure to alieveate any muscle aches and pains as well as check the range of motion on all joints and limbs…plus he just loves being loved, so it’s a good thing.
I avoid giving him anything if I can help it, blowing out his kidneys so he can walk seems like robbing Peter to pay Paul, so these more tangible methods have worked really well for the last three winters…
Post # 11
@Nona99: which medicine that is meant to help arthritis is bad for their kidneys?
Post # 12
I think it’s Rimadyl that they prescibe, well…any NSAIDS that you would give to a dog for pain associated with arthritis has the potential of causing liver and kidney damage, dogs are especially suseptable to kidny and liver failure in their older years, some breeds more than others, greyhounds are notorious for blown out kidneys due to a surplus of creatin being produced…labs take the liver route…either way, any good vet that puts your dog on something for the pain would also want a blood panel done every 6 months to make sure there aren’t any problems with either organs….for me, it makes no sense to risk organ failure when the discomfort can be managed without medication.
Post # 13
Our old family dog had arthritis. I know my parents just caved and gave her whatever prescription the vet recommended and it did help her a lot. I am very much into holistic medicine for animals and people, but if it gets bad enough you may just have to give her meds. I always worry about side effects and stuff….but she lived to be 19 and very healthy otherwise. So I guess what I’m saying is don’t feel bad if you have to give it to her eventually. But I do agree with PP about finding a holistic vet. Some are amazing, others not so much so just look around!
Post # 14
Give her a glucosamine supplement, and consider putting an electric blanket on Low setting in her dog bed on the very cold and bitter days.
Post # 15
Our boxer is 12, he’s been on glucosomine for 4-5 yrs now and went on Rimadyl last year. He has to have blood work done every so often and it took us a while to figure out the dosage but the difference in his activity/comfort level has been amazing. Our new vet does acupuncture so we’ve been considering that.
Post # 16
Trader Joes has a great glucosamine tablet for dogs that’s $10 for a bottle. Costco also sells one (Cosequin) for a decent price.
I also bought my dog a Kuranda dog bed to help with hers. Between the glucosamine and the dog bed, she’s doing much better.