Arthritis in Pets
Cats and dogs, like people, can get arthritis as they age. This painful condition affects the joints and can cause swelling, inflammation, and stiffness. While arthritis can have a major impact on a pet's quality of life, this condition often goes unrecognized and untreated in cats and dogs because pets can't tell their owners how they're feeling. It's important to be alert for signs of arthritis in your furry friends so you can take them to a veterinarian at the Montrose Veterinary Clinic for the treatment they need. Receiving proper arthritis care at our Houston clinic can help your pet live more comfortably for years to come.
What Causes Arthritis in Pets?
Sometimes aging causes arthritis in pets. More often, though, pet arthritis is caused by a combination of age and some other factor, such as an injury. In dogs, hip dysplasia is a common genetic condition that can lead to arthritis of the hip joints. Being overweight or obese puts pets at higher risk of developing arthritis as well due to the additional strain on their joints.
Could Your Pet Have Arthritis? Signs to Look Out For
Arthritis symptoms are not always obvious in pets, and it can be easy to mistake some of them for signs of regular aging. If your pet has any of the following symptoms, it's a good idea to take them to the vet, especially if they are displaying more than one symptom.
- Your pet seems less active and energetic in general
- Your pet avoids climbing stairs or jumping onto furniture
- Your pet walks with a limp or appears to move stiffly
- Your cat is grooming less than usual or is grooming excessively in one spot
- Your cat has trouble using the litter box
- Your pet seems to dislike being touched in a particular spot
How Is Arthritis in Pets Treated?
If your pets are overweight, your veterinarian may put them on a diet to ease the burden on their joints. Losing weight is often enough to help a pet feel better and experience fewer symptoms. NSAIDs may also be helpful in reducing joint pain and inflammation. Some pets benefit from eating a therapeutic diet that includes omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids as well as other nutrients that help repair and maintain joint cartilage. It's always best to consult a veterinarian about the best way to treat your pet's arthritis.
A Houston Veterinarian Can Treat Your Pet's Arthritis
If you think your pet may have arthritis, don't put off a visit to a Houston veterinarian. Here at the Montrose Veterinary Clinic, we can help keep your pet's arthritis pain to a minimum. You can reach us for an appointment at 713-597-3010.