Movement is a double-edged sword for dogs with arthritis. Some activities can exacerbate symptoms and cause inflammation, but routine activity is necessary for better movement and overall health. Incorporating certain exercises for dogs into your daily life can help you improve your companion’s quality of life. Whether your fur-baby is entering their golden years or is just hitting their stride, there are a few ways for you to facilitate healthy activity and manage the symptoms of arthritis.
Consider Aggravating Factors and Symptoms When Choosing Exercises for Dogs
Arthritis can impact each patient differently. Although many people associate arthritis with older dogs, canines of any age can live with the condition. Injuries, disease, and other factors can determine which joints are affected, and guardians should keep these in mind when choosing exercises for dogs. For example, if your companion’s arthritis primarily affects their hind limb joints, avoid activities that are hard on those joints (e.g., jumping up onto furniture, running up hills or staircases, and leaping into the car). Likewise, avoid activities that are rough on the front limb joints if that’s where your companion’s problems lie.
Low-Impact Exercises for Dogs are Ideal
Guardians should encourage moderate, consistent amounts of low-impact exercise for their arthritic companions. Sticking to a routine and avoiding exercise/play binges can help limit inflammation. Try to avoid letting your fur-baby run or jump on hard surfaces to limit the impact on their joints. Swimming is one of the best exercises for dogs with arthritis: it’s low-impact, promotes fitness, and is something that many canines enjoy. Still, dogs with some types of arthritis may require added flotation devices or alternative exercises, so be sure to consult your veterinary care team to discuss which types of activity are best for your case.
Helpful Everyday Adjustments
Exercises for dogs can help keep your companion healthy and active, but there are plenty of everyday adjustments that can help you limit inflammation and avoid injury. Adding non-slip flooring like rugs or yoga mats to your home can reduce muscle tension, slipping, and accidents. If your companion often joins you on the bed or couch, introduce a ramp to prevent jumping. Ramps can also be useful on steps and staircases. You should also consider your companion’s weight and overall health; extra weight can cause arthritis symptoms to worsen, and a balanced diet is crucial for canines with arthritis.
Trust Maryland Veterinary Surgical Services With Your Companion’s Health
Your companion’s health is important, and the team at MVSS is ready to provide the best care possible for your furry family. We are dedicated to combining comprehensive exams and assessments with informative and honest discussions of your companion’s care. Once we have worked with you to decide on the best course of action for your dog, our professionals will use their surgical expertise to work towards the goal of giving your companion an active and pain-free life. We are proud to serve loyal companions in Catonsville and Baltimore. To learn more about our services, give us a call at 410-788-4088 or visit us online. For more information and tips for pet health, follow us on Facebook and Pinterest.