Dog

Dog Joint Care

Claire Dunling

It’s an inevitable part of life that our bodies begin to lose mobility as we get older. As with humans, dog joint health deteriorates as they mature, although younger dogs can also be susceptible to inflammation of the joints. Do you know the signs of joint problems in dogs or the best preventative measures? Read on to find out how to keep them fit as a butcher’s dog for years to come…

The early years…

Considering your puppy is all brand new and most likely bouncing off the walls, their joint health is probably quite low on your lists of priorities. However, following these simple steps will vastly improve their joint condition later on in life:

What causes joint problems?

Of course, this depends on individual circumstances but in most scenarios, age will play a part in your dog’s joint health. If your dog has incurred an injury, like a broken bone or damaged ligament that involves a joint, they could also be more susceptible to arthritic conditions. Also, too much or too little exercise can affect the development of the joints which may cause poor joint health later in life.

It’s worth remembering that particular breeds are predisposed to having joint problems, hip or elbow dysplasia or arthritis. German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Labradors and Dachshunds are prone to poor joint health – this is mostly a trait of their genetic breeding and tending to put on weight easily.

Signs of joint problems in dogs:

To prevent your dog from falling victim to joint issues, we’d recommend getting them started on a supplement such as Yu-Move’s One-a-day joint supplement. The natural formula soothes stiffness, supports long-term joint health and promotes mobility. Its tasty chew form means your pooch won’t kick up a stink like they might if they discovered tablet disguised in food.

Just as you should be brushing your dog’s teeth from a young age, it’s never too early to get them started on a joint support plan. It will make a vast difference to the health and wellbeing of their joints and therefore improved mobility.

Breeds & Big Bones

With age, your dog will eventually have reduced mobility. So, when they think about jumping up onto chairs, running, jumping and skidding to a halt, as they did as puppies, they will often find it harder. This is another reason why weight control is essential as a heavier weight combined with impact will inevitably cause more wear and tear on their joint conditions over time.

Bigger dogs, like your GSD’s, St. Bernard’s and Rottweilers are typical breeds that are affected by hereditary joint problems. Their quick growth and weight gain mean that weight control and joint supplements are very important. A supplement such as Synoquin for large breeds has been specifically formulated to support joint mobility in large breed dogs’ that weigh over 25kg. Choose either sprinkle capsules which can easily be added to daily meals or opt for the chewable tablet to act as a treat. Your veterinary surgeon will be able to advise on the correct dosage for your dog.

The article is an opinion and should only be used as a guide. You should discuss any change to your pet’s care or lifestyle thoroughly with you vet before starting any program or treatment.

If in doubt contact your veterinary practice

And always keep your vet's phone number handy - just in case!