Arthritis in Our Pets

Now that  summer is over and cooler weather is here, our elderly pets, move slower,  have a hard time getting up and moving around.  Arthritis is a common problem with our older pets and some discussion is needed as to how we need to take care of them.

We have several medicines that help with arthritis pain in dogs.  One main catagory of these drugs are the NSAIDS or Non Steroidal Anti-Inflamatory Drugs.  NSAIDS that humans often take include ibuprofen and aspirin.  Caution should be used before giving an over the counter human medication to your dog.  Please consult your veterinarian prior to using any human over the counter drugs.  The possible side effects in dogs are much higher with human NSAID’s.  We have prescription NSAIDS that are safe and effective at managing your dogs arthritis pain.  Most commonly prescribed are Rimadyl and Meloxicam.

Cats are very sensitive to NSAID drugs and fatal reactions can happen if you give a dose of  aspirin, ibuprofen, tylenol or most of the dog prescription drugs.  The most prescribed and labeled NSAID for cats, Meloxicam, must be used with caution.

Another option for managing arthritis pain are the Nutritional supplements.  Chondroiten and Glucosamine are glycoprotiens that lubricate the joints and reduce inflammation.  We recommend a soft chewable flavored tablet – Synovi G4 for dogs and for cats we recommend a gel.  Remember that these products will take more time to work than NSAIDs.

Also helpful for arthritis is regular moderate exercise and keeping your four legged friends at a healthy weight.  If you think that your older pet is starting to show symptoms of arthritis, do not hesitate to contact us!