Did you know that arthritis affects one in five dogs over age of seven? It is a painful condition that affects joints and can occur in your pet’s neck, hips, shoulders, elbows and back. However, there are many simple solutions that you can provide at home that will relieve aches and pains in your dog’s joints.
* Change Your Dog’s Diet
Easy enough and it worked for my dog. Be sure you are providing a high-quality dog food with no added preservatives, food colorings, wheat, corn or soy products. It would be preferable to get a dog food that is low fat AND has low carbohydrates, but unfortunately there is no such thing as a low-carb dog food. Just be aware that grains (which make up a large component of dry dog food) tend to increase inflammation and aggravate arthritis. A better alternative would be to switch to home-prepared meals with either cooked or raw meats and vegetables.
However, if you don’t want to prepare meals for your pet, then cut back on dry food and start adding a cup of fresh veggie “salad” every day. Celery is excellent for joints. I often chop up lettuce, celery, cucumber, some carrot, and any other fresh vegetables I have on hand. Just make sure to cut all vegetables into very small pieces for easy digestion (a food processor is perfect for this) and don’t use onions or mushrooms as they may be toxic to your dog.
* Provide Supplements That Reduce Arthritic Swelling and Pain
Give your dog a glucosamine tablet. Glucosamine helps body manufacture glycosaminoglycans, which is designed to maintain cartilage structure. The recommended dosage is Ľ mg of a 500mg tablet per 10 pounds of body weight once a day. Preferably use a glucosamine tablet that also contains Chondroitin Sulfate. This supplement helps to attract water into cartilage for added nutrition and lubrication. It also seems to inhibit excessive cartilage destroying enzymes.
Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a naturally occurring organic dietary sulphur that has been shown in studies to relieve arthritic pain, slow joint deterioration and reduce inflammation with no negative side effects.
Dogs don’t usually get enough Omega 3 fatty acids in their diets. Omega 3 helps to regulate pressure in joints, among many other things. A good source for this is fish oil capsules. Additional vitamin E will also be needed since adding more oil to body increases need for this vitamin.