Is There a Connection Between Dog Arthritis and Obesity

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Is There a Connection Between Dog Arthritis and Obesity

by Jean Morgan

Is your older dog slowing down on his or her walks lately? Arthritis could be the cause.

Most people realize that older dogs ? just like older people ? are plagued with the pain of arthritis.But what many don't realize is that excess weight can increase the chance of a dog developing this painful disease. I know how difficult it can be for you and your dog. While arthritis can occur in dogs of any breed or at any age, certain factors can greatly increase the risk of your dog developing arthritis.

Why do dogs get arthritis?

There are several reasons that can cause a dog to get arthritis. Everyone associates arthritis with the aging process, but did you know that there are other factors that also contribute to the disease? Some dog breeds are genetically predisposed to the arthritis. If you have a German Shepard, Golden Retriever or Labrador, then there is a 70% chance he or she will get arthritis.

Injuries and stress to the tissues, ligaments and bones can also be a factor, as well as joint abnormalities, such as hip dysplasia (which puts extra stress on your pet's joints).

Infection (such as Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Fever) can affect the joints and contribute to your dog getting the painful disease.

The last ? but certainly not the least ? contributing factor is obesity. When we lavish our canine companions with treats, we do it out of the love. Who can turn away from those beautiful, sad eyes that seem to scream, "Feed me!" , but in reality we are hurting our dogs when we feed them too much.

Dogs who are overweight have a shorter lifespan, and have a tendency to develop arthritis years three years earlier than their leaner counterparts. The added weight puts a strain on the dogs' ligaments and joints, and painful arthritis develops.

While dogs can't talk as humans do, they let us know what is going on in other ways. Have you noticed that your dog is less active and perhaps walking more slowly lately? Sometimes a dog will show that he or she is in pain by being 'snappy,' or less apt to play.

If your dog is diagnosed with canine arthritis, your veterinarian can may suggest a change of diet (to control any weight problem), and a program of moderate exercise. There are also several options of treatment, which includes supplements and medication for pain control.

Visit our web site for more information about arthritis and dogs To get a free home made pet recipe book plus money off pet product coupons visit and sign up for the free pet food recipe books.

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