Above all, owners should avoid becoming complacent.
Arthritis is a progressive disease. As with people, symptoms can naturally wax and wane with severe pain on some days and hardly any on others. For this reason owners must look for changes in their dogs capabilities, posture, behaviour and mobility, and change their care plan accordingly.
It is common for owners to express their love to their pet in food, snacks, treats and titbits. This tends to increase when owners are worried about their dog. Do not fall into this trap as your dog may pile on the pounds, which will only worsen their condition.
Slippery flooring is a massive hazard for arthritic dogs and a common contributory factor to deterioration. Bear this in mind when at home and wherever you take your dog.
There are lots of other house modifications you can make very easily to help your arthritic dog.
People tend to walk their dogs further at the weekends because they have more time. This sudden increase in exercise will leave your arthritic dog feeling stiff and painful. Tailor your exercise to how well your dog is, not how much time you have.
Uneven surfaces, and unpredictable and changing surfaces like a shingle beach, will be very hard on your dog’s joints and muscles, and may well leave them very sore the next day.
Dogs can be very obedient and will hide their pain, too. You can find out more here.
As with humans, temperature and the weather can have a significant effect on the degree of pain arthritis sufferers feel. Keep your dog warm with a good quality coat ideally with neck and belly coverage. Don’t leave them out in the cold for long, especially at the end of the walk. Don’t leave their bed in a draft. Encourage them to use their bed rather than lying on the hard cold ground. Don’t leave them damp, and try to dry their feet.
Missing Routine Appointments
These check-up appointments are essential to ensure your dog is on the right medication, that there are no side effects, and that another disease process hasn’t started to develop.
Don’t fall into the trap of feeling you must buy everything on offer. There are a lot of supplements, foods and merchandise out there. Not all of it is proven to be useful, so do your research into what to buy.