Arthritis is one of the most common medical conditions in the modern age of medicine, and can have a marked impact on quality of life for both people and animals.
Arthritis occurs when a joint becomes inflamed. This inflammation causes damage to the joint surface, turning the healthy, smooth cartilage into a rough, sandpaper-like surface that is painful and stiff during movement.
The most common signs of arthritis are stiffness when first getting up, reluctance to exercise, not wanting to walk and limping. Many owners may think their pet is simply getting old, when in reality the animal is stiff and uncomfortable, but the good news is that with a small amount of treatment they may have a new lease on life.
Arthritis can occur for many reasons. Commonly, arthritis simply occurs from a life-time of wear and tear on a joint from jumping, running and playing. However, arthritis can also have pathological causes, such as immune dysfunction, nutritional deficiencies, abnormal bone growth or trauma.
Whatever the cause, there are excellent treatments available for arthritis and this form of joint degeneration no longer means the end of a happy and active lifestyle.
Arthritis is generally best managed from all angles:
1. Medication to reduce the inflammation and prevent further damage.
3. A healthy diet to maintain body weight
4. Lifestyle modifications to help manage joint issues.
Please read on for more information, starting with Arthritis and Joint Medications.