Arthritis is one of the most common ailments that domesticated dogs suffer from. It typically develops as a dog ages, and is more common in the medium-to-large sized breeds, though all sizes and varieties are susceptible. Unlike with humans, detecting arthritis in a canine can be difficult. As a pet owner, knowing what to look for can help diagnose the issue before it progresses too far.
- Lagging behind on your usual walks. If you notice your dog beginning to slow down on walks, lagging behind more than he/she is used to, it could signal an underlying issue.
- Excessive licking and gnawing at joint areas. While it is normal for your pooch to do a certain amount of licking, too much usually means something is wrong. This is especially true when the licking or gnawing is confined to certain joint areas.
- Difficulty getting up from a prone or sitting position. If you notice your dog is struggling to get up from certain positions, it is usually indicative of a joint problem.
- Discomfort or agitation from touch. If your dog vocalizes or nips at you when you touch, pet, or rub certain areas, there is an issue. A dog’s temperament is highly affected by pain, and unusual behavior is typically a sign that something is wrong.
- General difficulty with movement. If your dog is hesitant to climb stairs, jump for a ball, or just run around, it may be suffering from arthritis. While old age is another factor that may affect general mobility, arthritis will hamper your dog’s movement much quicker.
If you have noticed any of the aforementioned symptoms of arthritis in your pooch, any type of dog joint pain, you should schedule a veterinary checkup immediately. Make it known to the veterinarian that you suspect something may be wrong with your dog. Early detection and diagnosis can make treatment more effective.
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