The 10 most common signs your dog has joint problems
Joint pain can seriously affect the quality of life of our furry, four-legged friends.
Sometimes you can instantly notice the pain, while other times the discomfort is silently hiding as a hereditary or chronic issue. It may be arthrosis or dysplasia, perhaps a recent trauma. Nevertheless, your pet feels bad.
Here are the most common behaviours your dog may exhibit if it is experiencing joint pain:
This is the most obviously noticeable behaviour. If your pet isn't using only one of its limbs, it most definitely feels pain. The first thing you should do is immobilize your pet and reduce the load from the affected limb. Contact your veterinarian immediately to evaluate the situation. The pain can be caused by any number of things, including trauma, increased inflammation or chronic illness.
2. Slowing down
If your dog used to be active during daily activities but is now suddenly moving slower, it might be due to joint pain. By reducing its speed of movement, your pet is trying to cope with the discomfort.
3. Slow to get up and lay down
Getting up or laying down involves multiple joints. If there is pain and inflammation in those joints, it will take more time for your dog to change positions.
4. Avoiding stairs or not jumping into a car or on bed/couch
Walking up / down stairs and jumping on / off beloved places puts an extra load and pressure on your dog’s joints. What was once an easy task becomes more challenging with joint problems.
5. Sleeping longer and more frequently
You’d have to observe your pet for a longer time to notice significant changes in sleep habits. However, sleeping longer in the mornings and being reluctant to get out of bed can be a sign that your dog is trying to rest and heal.
6. Reluctant to go for walks or walking slower
As a pet owner, you may notice your furry friend doesn’t want to take its usual walks. Or perhaps it is taking longer than usual to go the same distance.
Joint and body stiffness in the short term can be caused by lack of movement. However, in the long term, a lack of nutritional substances can cause more serious joint damage and stiffness. Check out this natural dog supplement for joint health.
8. Excessive grooming and licking
To ease discomfort, dogs tend to lick the specific area that is bothering them. You may notice excessive grooming or even a change of fur colour around the painful joint.
9. Daily habit changes in eating, drinking, socializing
If your dog is having difficulties moving, it will be more challenging for it to go to its bowl to eat and drink. It is also possible that chronic joint pain is making your dog depressed, antisocial or even aggressive, thus lowering its appetite. These are symptoms of your dog’s discomfort.
Whining, groaning, or grunting when changing positions can indicate discomfort. It can be acute or chronic pain that should be tended to by a veterinarian.
If you notice one or more of these signs in your dog, make sure to contact your veterinarian to discuss potential diagnosis and available natural treatment options.
For short- and long-term joint treatment, our veterinarians recommend the natural dog supplement Strong Joints & Bones. It contains glucosamine (necessary for the recovery of joint surfaces), MSM (the main building block of connective tissue) and Boswellia extract with natural anti-inflammatory and painkilling properties.