Every year, millions of dogs develop some form of arthritis. In fact, 1 out of 5 dogs currently suffer from this ailment. Despite the fact that arthritis, osteoarthritis in particular, effects mostly older and larger dogs, on average, by the time a dog is 5 years old they will need to be treated for some form of arthritis
While human skeletal structures are very different compared to that of dogs, human joints are constructed the same way as dogs. A joint is the meeting of two bones, and at this union there is a smooth cartilage that wraps around the end of each bone. The cartilage has no nerve endings and acts like a cushion for the joints, preventing any pain from occurring when they move.
Also like humans, many dogs suffer from osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is a condition that occurs when the cartilage that protects the joints deteriorates, leaving the bones exposed and touching. Unlike cartilage, bones do contain nerves and the rubbing of two bones at a joint creates a great deal of pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving.
So why do so many dog suffer from arthritis? Much of it has to do with their diet. The main source of protein for dogs is red meat, which contains a very high amount of uric acid. Uric acid causes a buildup of crystals around the joints, producing pain and becoming a major contributor to many arthritic conditions occurring in dogs.
Osteoarthritis is very painful and can greatly diminish the quality of life of your dog. They become sluggish and inactive, unwilling or unable to move as they once did, often exhibiting their pain with limping, slowness to get up after lying down, and not jumping as far as they once did. When the pain gets really bad, some dogs even lose their appetite, creating even more worrisome health problems.
The current treatment vets often use for dogs with osteoarthritis is to prescribe them NSAIDs. NSAIDs are medications such as Aleve and Motrin, which are suppose to treat pain. This treatment is not a permanent cure and can do more harm than good. These medications can cause side effects such as vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite, or yellowing of the gums or eyes. Long term use of these medications can cause damage to your dogs liver or kidneys.
For a natural and safe way to treat and prevent osteoarthritis in your dogs, use Joint Re-Leaf (TM)