Thursday, April 4, 2013

Arthritis in Dogs and cats

Treatment for Arthritis in Companion Pets

Aging of the body occurs in almost everything. Sometimes there is six string failure, sometimes there is mental failure and sometimes it is mobility failure. The most common rom failure is Arthritis in cats and dogs.

Mobility is defined when "the quality or state of getting mobile". In our companion pests the joints are the most common areas to become limited. The joints can become damaged gradually and lose their conformation. The lining of the joints should include cartilage to produce joint fluid and then a smooth surface for window film, inter joint space free of infection or boney changes and good blood circulation to provide nutrition throughout joints. In big dogs plus some breeds of cats the aging of the hips will be an anticipated site of impinge on. Once aging and degradation occur which is referred to OsteoArthritis(OA).

There are factors that contribute to OsteoArthritis, for example obese, lack of good exercise, poor diet, environment and find out genetics. Genetics can't likely be readily controlled. Often when you are getting large breed dog (labrador, shepherd, danes) owners will ask if the dog originated "good hips". There are certifications just by OFA and PennHIP to identify the parent dog stricken by excellent hips decrease the likelihood of problems in their ova. Throughout the dogs lifetime doing exercises on soft surfaces is really a healthy choice. Cats have OsteoArthritis of the hips related to obesity, lack of exercise, poor diet, environment and genetics just like dogs. Siamese cats and in terms of the Maine Coon are highest on the list.

Radiographs (x-rays) are the most common way to diagnose OA. An exam can be very helpful but not pinpoint just like a diagnosis. What if the animal has OA? Well, weight reduction can be an easy and inexpensive step. There are joint diets that have many fatty acids to reduce inflammation, higher protein for weight loss--I am referring to J/d by Hill's. It does the job well. For dogs there are several nutriceutical products that will not have side effects and are a great choice for early stages of OA. For example Dasaquin which is a combination glucoseamine/chondroitin sulfate/MSM/saponin model name. This stimulates the cartilage cells release a more joint fluid and decrease some scar tissue. If there is no cartilage left after that it won't work on that one joint but does improve other joints.

The next drug category is non-steroidal anti-inflammatories. (NSAIDS). There are DOG ( I emphasized that word) prescriptions medications to cut pain and inflammation. They have more side effects so over a liver and kidney function needs to be monitored. The more immediate consequences are vomiting/diarrhea. However, they work well and are tolerated for long periods of time. The addition of more products for pain control behave as multimodal. These prescription medications pain relief more directly with pain and never have to inflammation. There are limitations with this group for the cat patients.

Last hope for dogs and cats that can barely walk is that cortisone. While it does have some of negative side effects it can be the very last a cure for many patients. If that we now have pre-existing problems such as heart conditions, kidney disease or severe dental infection it's not used.

Seeking veterinary help early is key to the problems which OA. And remember throughout pets lifetime keep the weight off so you can keep OA pushed learn.


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