It's common for pets to eventually develop arthritis as they get older, though it can also develop in pets who are younger. If you suspect that your pet has arthritis, or your pet has already been diagnosed with it, you may have a lot of questions about this condition. When you have a pet with possible arthritis, it's important to get them veterinarian care so that their symptoms can be relieved. Call us for Magruder Tabb Animal Clinic serving Yorktown, VA, to have your pet seen by a veterinarian.
What Is Pet Arthritis?
Just as humans can get arthritis, pets can develop it during middle age or their senior years. Though it can also be present in their younger years it is more common during these older phases of life. Also known as degenerative joint disease, arthritis happens when a joint begins to be unstable. As this occurs, the bones that make up the joint begin to move in abnormal ways. The movement of these bones then begins to cause an erosion of the cartilage there. This is what lines each joint and constitutes a barrier in between the bones to keep them from rubbing together.
How Does the Arthritis Cause Pain?
With erosion of the cartilage, the bones rub directly on each other and cause inflammation and pain. This can lead to a number of symptoms that can let you know that there's a problem. It can also lead to a lower quality of life for your pet. When a pet has arthritis, it can be important for them to visit a veterinarian to have their joints assessed and get the treatment they need to feel better.
What Are the Symptoms?
Many symptoms may be present when a pet has arthritis. The signs in cats and dogs are often similar, but there may be slight differences in the way they present themselves. Both dogs and cats can limp when they have arthritis because it is harder to talk. As the pet gets older, slowing down in activity can also mean arthritis and not just a natural part of getting older. Cats often have more trouble with jumping and climbing, and dogs may have a tough time jumping up onto furniture, getting into a car, or going up the stairs. When a litter box has steep sides, cats may have a tougher time using it and may start to go outside of it. Cats may excessively groom a painful area, and dogs often pant more. When you notice behavioral changes, you need to have your pet seen by a vet and screened for pet arthritis.
Visit Us for More Information
We can often help your pet to feel more comfortable with the use of arthritis treatments. Call us at (757) 865-6510 for Magruder Tabb Animal Clinic serving Yorktown, VA, to make your pet's appointment.