Arthritis in Pets and How We Can Help

Older pets can suffer from a variety of age-related conditions. This can range from liver disease to diabetes, cancer, chronic pain, and even arthritis. Like humans, arthritis can have a negative effect on a pet's life. Fortunately, our veterinarian at Marietta Animal Hospital can help pets with arthritis experience less pain and improve their mobility and quality of life.

What Causes Arthritis?

Most causes of arthritis are age-related. 80% of senior dogs over age 8 suffer from arthritis and joint conditions, making this group of pets the most vulnerable.

However, some dogs and cats can show signs of arthritis beginning as young as one year old. This can be due to a degenerative joint condition, which can be found in 20% of dogs before they reach age one. In young dogs, arthritis can be caused by abnormal growths in the hips or elbows, known as dysplasia. Injuries, genetic factors in larger breeds of dogs, and obesity can also be causes of arthritis in young dogs.

What Are Symptoms of Arthritis?

There are several signs of arthritis to look out for in pets. These often include:

  • Limping
  • Refusing to use certain limbs
  • Excessive licking
  • Fatigue
  • Yelping 
  • Whimpering
  • Muscle atrophy or muscle loss
  • Increasing agitation

If you notice any of these symptoms in your pet, it's important to take them to our animal clinic as soon as possible. We can provide a thorough assessment of your pet's medical history and current help to understand the cause of its pain or discomfort.

Treatment for Arthritis

At Marietta Animal Hospital, our veterinarian will help diagnose your pet with arthritis by providing a series of tests. These can include physical exams, x-rays, and even bloodwork to rule out other issues such as cancer. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment for arthritis can include:

  • Weight management
  • Proper nutrition
  • Changes in exercise
  • Swimming to relieve pain
  • Pain medicine
  • Physiotherapy treatment
  • Mobility aids

The proper treatment can help your pet find immediate relief while also helping prevent arthritis from worsening. Although arthritis will progress eventually, lifestyle changes for your pet can help avoid aggravating symptoms.

Contact Our Animal Clinic for Arthritis Treatment from Our Veterinarian in Jacksonville, FL

At Marietta Animal Hospital, we're dedicated to helping your pet find relief from arthritis and experience a better quality of life. Our veterinarian can find the best solution for your pet to live a healthy and pain-free life. We are committed to providing your pet quality veterinary care at any stage of its life. Contact us today to schedule your pet's next exam by calling (904) 783-2574.