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Canine Arthritis

How to help your dog get stronger and moving again, without relying on medications.

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Want to chat more about how Pawsitively Fit can help your dog stop struggling with arthritis pain and difficulty moving so that you can get back to doing the things you love together? Fill out this form and let’s chat!

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So many senior dogs are diagnosed with arthritis it almost seems like a fact of life. It can also make many owners feel helpless, worried that their dog is suffering in pain and unsure about what to try to help their dog get better.

So they turn to Google and what do they find…supplements, medications, support braces, harnesses…the list goes on! And everyone knows someone whose dog had arthritis and they used “x, y, z” and it really helped. So do you try that?

Picture of Oreo

Does this sound like you?

Many owners turn to their veterinarians for advice. Often they are given some anti-inflammatories to try to see if it helps and are told to return if it doesn’t. And then maybe a myriad of different pain meds are tried in an attempt to find the one that gets your dog back to where they were before the arthritis really set in.

In the mean time, your routine is likely changing. Maybe those walks you used to rely on at the end of the day to destress after work, that also allowed you to be social with the neighbours, are disappearing. Maybe you are fearful that if you go out and leave your dog at home, they might slip and fall and hurt themselves more.

Rufus
Senior Dog.
Farley

Is this how you feel?

😥Worried that your dog is going to continue to get worse and that this may be the beginning of the end?

😥Worried that you can’t tell how much pain your dog is actually in?

😥Worried that you don’t know how to help them and that that feeling is only going to grow over time?

😥Frustrated that nothing else has been suggested for you to try other than pain meds to help your dog move like they used to?

😥Scared that you are going to lose your companion because you aren’t doing everything for them that you can, even though no one has told you what else to do?

If your dog is struggling with arthritis, here are some things you should know:

✔ Arthritis affects 1 out of 4 adult dogs and 4 out of 5 senior dogs. It is a normal part of aging much like wrinkles and grey hair.

✔ Pain meds are beneficial for helping manage your dog’s arthritis pain, but they don’t always help your dog get around better. In other words, pain medications alone will not help your dog gain back the muscle, stability and flexibility they had before arthritis set in.

✔ Dogs with arthritis are more at risk of overdoing it and increasing their pain. The longer a dog is struggling with arthritis, the more they will compensate and use their bodies differently, causing aches and pains in places other than just their joints.

✔ The longer a dog is struggling with arthritis, the more they will compensate and use their bodies differently, causing aches and pains in places other than just their joints.

What can I do to help my dog feel better?

👍Make a decision about getting help. Depending on how much your dog is struggling, they may not have time to wait. Or, if you do wait, things could continue to get worse. Arthritis pain will not go away with time

👍Get your dog moving. “Motion is lotion” for arthritic joints. But be careful not to make big jumps in activity too fast. Working with a canine rehab specialist can help ensure that your dog is doing the RIGHT exercises to avoid setbacks and maximize their potential

👍Avoid too much rest. “Rest is rust” for arthritic joints. When dog’s with arthritis spend too much time lying down, they can become stiffer, more painful and weaker. Move it or lose it is so true in this situation!

👍Get real, quality rehab for your dog. Rehabilitation can help with your dog’s arthritis. At Pawsitively Fit, arthritis is one of the most common conditions we see, especially in dogs after the age of 5. If your dog’s arthritis is reducing their quality of life, and you are worried they aren’t going to be able to keep walking, rehab can help.

The good news is Pawsitively Fit can help your arthritic dog!

How does Pawsitively Fit help?

🐾We spend the time to examine your dog from nose to tail, top to bottom to determine where they hurt, where they are stiff and what the focus of treatment should be.

🐾We empower YOU, the dog owner, by explaining to you WHAT we find, and what that means for your dog and how that impacts their treatment.

🐾Our initial focus is on getting them moving again to help decrease their pain.

🐾Next, we focus on increasing their strength to KEEP THEM MOVING, through exercise.

🐾Lastly, we progress those exercises to maximize their gains!

🐾Often our clients are able to reduce the amount of pain medications their dog needs. Often less medication means a more alert, playful dog!

Meet 13 year old Farley!

Farley’s owners were concerned that he was getting weaker in his hind legs, he was having more difficulty walking and his left back leg was slipping. He’d had surgeries on both knees over a decade ago for CCL tears.

Farley gained inches of muscle on his left hind leg, lost weight and continues to go for 2-3 walks a day!

His owner Anne said, “Your exercises helped his mobility a lot. He did lose weight and that was something for Farley….when Shauna left us physically she left us with Physio Therapy exercises to do with Farley. Over the weeks he got really good at his physio and they will now be an ongoing practice to keep Farley fit.

READY TO TALK ABOUT HOW PAWSITIVELY FIT CAN HELP YOUR DOG? FILL OUT THIS FORM AND WE WILL GET IN TOUCH WITH YOU!

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Success Stories

Chances are we’ve helped a dog with problems just like yours. We are all good dog owners, sometimes we just need a little help.

Shauna came to work with our 11 year old shih tzu, Oreo. Oreo had been having some shoulder and neck pain, causing her to limp considerably, and at it’s worst, prevented her from looking up, or jumping/climbing stairs. We had previously been able to take her for 45-50 minute walks and had to drastically cut back to 5 minutes.

When Shauna arrived, she did a thorough examination of Oreo. She determined, through the hands on examination, and questions for us, exercises that would benefit her. She also used manual therapy and a cold laser which helped immediately. Over the course of a few visits, Oreo quickly began to get back to her old self again.

We have been able to keep up the list of exercises that grew over the course of each visit, and Oreo is gradually getting back to longer walks. We are so thankful for the knowledge, expertise and care that Shauna has! I would absolutely recommend her to anyone who is having issues with their dog’s mobility. Thanks Shauna!

Picture of OreoHayley J, Oreo's owner

Shauna of Pawsitively Fit has been regularly treating “Winston” our Old English Sheepdog since March. Winston has very bad arthritis in his hind legs. Shauna has made his life much more comfortable and given us piece of mind that we are doing everything to keep him mobile and his pain reduced. We highly recommend Pawsitively Fit.

Picture of WinstonDaryl, B, Winston's Owner