The importance of joint health for dogs

Updated: Jul 22, 2021


Preventing joint disease and treating it in its early stages can hugely impact a dog’s quality of life and doing all we can to support our dog’s joint health can help them lead fuller and longer lives. While many dogs of all ages can and do get arthritis, there is lots we can do to help them before it gets to this stage.


Why Joint Health is so Important

Unlike humans, dogs don’t have the option of using crutches or wheelchairs. On top of this, their days are spent walking and running and they like to keep active, even in their old age.


Signs of Joint Disease

Dogs will rarely vocalise in pain or refuse to walk. They are stoic creatures that tend to ‘just get on with it’. Even when in quite a lot of pain, dogs will still run after their favourite ball or rush to greet us when we arrive home from work. Signs of joint pain can be subtle and will include:


Slowing down

Getting tired more quickly on walks

Stiffness when rising, especially in the mornings

A hesitance to jump

Joint swelling

Crepitus (creaking or popping of the joints that is audible)

Muscle wasting

Reduced appetite

Panting

Shaking


What causes Joint Disease?

Oftentimes, it is the luck of the draw. A dog’s genetics will determine a lot when it comes to their health and some will be more prone to developing diseases like hip dysplasia, spondylosis and osteoarthritis. Pedigrees such as the German Shepherd, Labrador Retriever and Rottweilers tend to be most predisposed. However, joint disease can happen to any dog.


Things like previous injuries, exercise, lifestyle, weight and diet will all play a role. The older a dog is, the more likely that they will have some degree of joint disease.


Preventing Joint Disease

While we cannot typically prevent or cure joint disease, it can be slowed down and managed. If you have a breed that is known for developing joint disease or you know their parents suffered, it is important to be pro-active.

Things that can help include:


Maintaining a healthy weight. Excess fat puts extra pressure on joints and plays a huge role in the pain and inflammation associated with joint disease.

Not over-exercising a puppy and providing adult and senior dogs with consistent exercise.


Feeding a diet containing ingredients such as fish oils, green lipped mussel and Glucosamine. For those prone to joint issues, the earlier this is started the better.


The use of joint supplements such as our Joint & Mobility Treats (we call them treats to appeal to our furry friends, but they are so much more than just a treat!). Developed with a pet nutritionist, these biscuits are packed with joint and muscle supporting ingredients that can help reduce joint inflammation and repair damaged cartilage.

The Low Down on Joint Supplements

When you are considering a joint supplement, it can be hard to know which one to go for. There are lots on the market, all claiming similar things. It is important to look at the recipe, to ensure the product contains proven ingredients that have been thoroughly researched.


Botanicals by Gizzls Joint & Mobility Treats contain ingredients which have been scientifically proven to prevent joint disease and support those with existing joint issues:


Boswellia Serrata

Slows cartilage damage in arthritic joints. Reduces inflammation of the joints.


Astaxanthin

Promotes faster recovery from exercise & proactively maintains health. Protects against free radicals.


Turmeric & Black Pepper

High in antioxidants, a powerful anti-inflammatory and relieves pain and stiffness caused by arthritis.


Omega-3 Fish Oils

Supports dogs' hearts, joints, coats, skin & immune systems.


The Take Home Message

Joint disease is a common condition that can greatly impact a dog’s quality of life. The pain and inflammation can be debilitating, but thankfully, there is a lot that can be done to manage it and keep your dog's tail wagging!

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