Canine Osteoarthritis

Our dog “Palette” was born in 2005,which makes her 11 years old.

In human years, she is 57 years old.

If you would like to find out how old your dog is in human years, you can check out here.

palette-sep-29-2015-being-bathed

Dog ages much faster than human would.

Just like human, as your dog ages it is inevitable that you will see some signs of old ages such as  getting harder for them to jump into the car, taking more time to getting up, after getting up from laying down position you might see some stiffness in their joint (limping), or maybe, taking time to come down the stairs, and they might sleep longer than they were used to.

You could take these signs as the natural ageing process,but some of them might not be,and it might be an evidence of an underlying medical problem.

For example, one of the common thing among the old dogs is called “Canine Osteoarthritis”.

It is the joint problem that joint cartilage gets breakdown. Even though joint problem sounds like old dog issue but young ones could get one too.

I do not know if Palette  will get this issue but when she was puppy, at one point, she was limping. Doctors we saw thought she must have tore the ligament, looking at the X-ray and manipulating legs.

They also commented that if ligament was tore in young age, sometimes, those young dogs develops arthritis earlier than other dogs and that would be something to keep in mind.

However, when her leg actually gets cut open, ligament was perfectly fine. Then, they never actually could find out why she was limping.

One thing that fixed her issue was joint care tablet, that got NZ lipped green mussel along with glucosamine, chondroitin.

She was being able to run and she was not limping anymore after she was on it like 1 week long.

She is not limping still, but one thing that I be careful of when it comes to feeding is that, I make sure that I feed her things like trachea, poultry feet, cartilage etc for joint health.

Yes, she is not limping now but giving those treats with benefit would no hurt.

Joint issue for dog is actually close to my heart kind of topic because of our own dog went through limping phase and had joint issue as a puppy.

In this entry, I would like to share the information about canine osteoarthritis.

What is Canine Osteoarthritis?

According to Canine journal article website, Canine Osteoarthritis is also known as degenerative joint disease (DJD), and it is defined as the progressive and permanent long-term deterioration of the cartilage surrounding the joints.

What is the difference between Arthritis vs Osteoarthritis?

Arthritis is, as you know, it is the inflammation of the joints;characterized by the degeneration of cartilage, boney proliferation resulting in bone-on-bone contact within and/or around affected joints, and synovial membrane changes.

Osteoarthritis is the term referring to a form of chronic joint inflammation caused by deterioration of joint cartilage;it can be as mild as hearing the click of a knee or as severe as secondary to chronic hip or elbow dysplasia, or trauma, abnormal wear in joints or cartilage, obesity (since it would put stress on joints) .

Older dogs are at the highest risk.

There is no known cause for this at this moment,however.

How can you tell if your dog got Osteoarthritis?

To diagnose the issue, veterinarian may ask you historical symptoms, such as decreased activity or stiffness, as well as a physical examination which will reveal a decreased range of motion, stiff-legged gait, deformity of the joints, and swelling or pain in the joints to assess.

The most common sign might be slowing down of their animals.

Some dogs may not be able to coming downstairs or upstairs as smoothly as they could as once they could when they were young or they may have trouble when getting up from a lying position (sign of stiffness).

What can you do to help them ease the joint pain issue?

If your dog shows sign of osteoarthritis, you may want to consult with your vet for further diagnose and tell you if your dog got arthritis or osteoarthritis and then, they can give you the treatment options to help them feel better.

Treatment options..

Whether your dog got arthritis or osteoarthritis, most likely, your vet would want to prescribe the NSAID ( Non steroid anti inflammatory drugs such as remadyl ( To learn more about what NSAID is, how it works, what to avoid etc.., please refer to our past entry titled “ stem cell therapy for dogs “).

Along with it, they would most likely recommend you to give your dog joint care supplement (glucosamine/chondroitin, but personally, since these two glucosamine/chondroitin is most popular and basic combination, most joint care supplement would contain those. What I personally prefer for Palette if she had another bout of limping again is that to look for the supplement that also contains NZ green lipped mussel.

It did great on her in the past. That is why, while it is not the same brand that Palette was taking, I searched for vendor for joint care supplement and found one maker that offer one with NZ green lipped mussel so you can try on your dog and see how it does on them. YOu can find the joint supplement here.)

Because vet would most likely recommend glucosamine/chondroitin for dogs with joint issue, I would like to add that feeding things like trachea, cartilage, poultry paws, gullet (taffy/weasand) that are known as great natural source of glucosamine/chondroitin are great treats for your dogs.

Also, Omega 3 fatty acids are especially good thing to add to your dog’s diet too. Fish that are high in omega 3 fatty acids include, salmon,herring, mackerel, and sardine,

In addition to feed these omega 3 fatty acids rich fish in form of whole/fillet fish, you can add fish body oil to your dog’s diet to bump up the level of Omega 3 fatty acids.

This will help the joint issue as well.

That being said, if your dog got osteoarthritis, then, medication is not for cure but for management since Osteoarthritis is progressive disease.

If the disease was suspected to secondary to obesity, you can also manage the area by exercising your dog and feeding healthier diet as well.

Extra weight stressing the joint got off and the dog achieved the ideal weight, your vet might be able to guide you to give minimum dose of medication,which I think is a good thing.

Now is the good time to review your dog’s diet and exercise regime and help them get better..

For more information on osteoarthritis for dogs, you can read the full article at canine journal website here.

Another website that might be good reading is at dogsnsw website here.

Dec 05, 2016 | 1 | Dog Health

One Response to “Canine Osteoarthritis”

  1. johnnie maleszewski Says:

    I found this to be a very interesting read as my Little Poppa has turned nine this year and he has so problems with this as well.

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