6 Ways to Care For Your Senior Dog's Joints

6 Ways to Care For Your Senior Dog's Joints

Unlock the secret to keeping your senior dog's joints healthy and strong. Say goodbye to arthritis pain and hello to more cuddling and lazy days with your loyal companion. Discover how to help your aging best friend stay comfortable and mobile with our proven tips and advice.

Our beloved dogs’ golden years are undoubtedly some of the best. While they may be a little slower to greet us at the door and their sweet muzzles have frosted with age, you may find that they are much more obliged to lazy days spent at your side and extra snuggles on the couch.

However, just like with humans, age doesn’t come without changes to a dog's body. As they get older, the cartilage in places like the hips and elbows begins to deteriorate, leading to a common condition known as arthritis. 

I see this very often in my older canine patients. It’s typically easy to treat with veterinary advice and assistance, but it can still cause pain and discomfort for your four-legged best friend. 

As a pet parent myself, I understand how difficult it can be to watch our beloved companions struggle with aching joints. 

If you want to help your pets feel more comfortable and mobile as they age, here are some of the best ways to take care of your senior dog’s joints and how to help a dog with arthritis at home.

old golden retriever laying in the grass

Why Caring For Your Senior Dog’s Joints is Important

Throughout your dogs' life, they will use their trusty joints to run, play, and enjoy all of your walks together. These bones will receive less lubrication as they age, exposing the cartilage to more wear and tear. 

Eventually, this causes irreversible damage to the joints that is difficult to repair and decreases mobility. Not only can this be painful for your precious pet, but it can make normally simple tasks such as getting much-needed exercise and walking to the food bowl exhausting and laborious.

This is why the responsibility of caring for your senior dog’s joints shouldn’t be underestimated. 

Even when your dogs begin to show signs of arthritis, it’s not too late to begin nurturing their bodies with what they need to stay happy, healthy, and mobile for as long as possible. 

Signs of Arthritis in Dogs

There are many different ways your dog will begin to show symptoms of arthritis, but these are some of the most common to look out for: 

  • Difficulty laying down or standing up
  • Lameness in legs
  • Stiff or swollen joints
  • Crying or whimpering
  • Low Stamina
  • Decreased appetite
  • Difficulty getting comfortable
  • Hesitant to get up or down from furniture
  • Increased or uncharacteristic aggression towards other animals or people
  • Just seeming “off” 

If you begin to notice one or more of these symptoms, I recommend scheduling a visit with your dog’s veterinarian immediately. The doctor will be able to diagnose your ailing companion and help you create a treatment plan.

6 Ways You Can Help Ease Your Dog’s Joint Pain

Although there is no cure for arthritis, there are ways you can make your old friend feel more comfortable at home. Here are some of the easiest that you can start today!

  1. Keep Your Dog at an Ideal Weight

The heavier your pet is, the more weight his/her bones and joints will need to support. Make sure you’re feeding your dog a healthy, balanced diet. This will be essential for their joint health and their overall well-being.

  1. Get Plenty of Exercise

This may seem counterproductive if your dog is already struggling to get around, but the physical effects of exercise can actually help your senior dog feel better and more youthful. 

Take your furry friend for a walk at least once a day to get those aging muscles moving. If arthritis has already taken a toll on their mobility, you may want to consider activities such as swimming or hydrotherapy

  1. Switch to Soft Bedding

Now that your sweet pup has gotten older, he’ll likely want to spend more time lounging around the house. Why not surprise him with a comfortable place to rest? 

Soft, padded bedding is much more gentle on a dog’s body than the floor at your feet. As long as it's durable and simple to climb into, it’s the perfect solution for your senior dog’s joints.

  1. Make Your Home Safer For Dogs With Mobility Issues

Dogs are valued members of our family. That’s why we want to make their lives at home as easy as possible for them. 

When creating a safe home environment for your senior four-legged friend, here are some things you might consider: 

  • Using ramps or steps for the furniture and car. 
  • Laying down rugs or traction strips on slippery flooring such as wood or tile. 
  • Elevate food and water bowls.
  • Install pet gates at the top and bottom of staircases.
  • Cover exposed wires or cables.
  • Keep clutter and hazardous materials off the floor. 
  1. Heat Therapy

When our bodies are aching, one of the first things we reach for is a heating pad or a hot water bottle. Heat therapy can provide the same relief for our dogs’ bodies! 

It’s also especially beneficial during the winter months since cold weather can slow blood circulation and cause muscle spasms. 

You can give your dog heat therapy using heating pads, steamed towels, or moist heat packs. Whichever you decide to use, place directly on the affected area for no more than 10 to 15 minutes at a time. Just be sure it isn’t too hot on your dog’s skin.

If full-body treatment is required, a warm bath will work best! 

  1. Diet and Nutrition

One of the best things you can do for your dog’s joints and overall health is adjusting their diet to include nutrients that not only treat arthritis but help prevent 

You’ll find several foods and pet supplements catered to dogs’ joint health on the market. To ensure you’re getting the best of the best, check for these beneficial ingredients: 

Even if your dog hasn’t been diagnosed with arthritis by a veterinarian or shown signs of the disease, it’s always a good idea to start tending to your dog’s aging bones and joints sooner rather than later. 

older dog

In fact, I recommend getting started today!

Upgrade Your Pet’s Health the Natural Way

Unlock your pet's health potential with insights from industry expert veterinarian Dr. Michelle Dulake, who combines her vast knowledge and experience to create a thriving, happy life for your furry companion.

At Fera Pet Organics, we’re committed to using only the most natural high-quality ingredients to keep your furry family members healthy and happy for as long as possible.