When your dog doesn't seem interested in eating his food, do you know what to do? When your dog vomits often, could there be something serious wrong with him? If he struggles to get up the stairs, does he need to see a vet? Having never owned an older dog, I knew nothing about the things that can begin to go wrong when dogs age. I adopted this guy when my neighbor moved into a nursing home and had to learn a lot about how to care for an older dog. My blog is filled with the many things that I have learned over the last year through the help of my vet.
If your older dog suffers from arthritis, then you likely look for any way you can help relieve his aching joints. Just like arthritis in humans, there are prescription medications that can help him, but no medication can cure or alleviate his pain completely. Thankfully, there are many natural ways you can help your older dog enjoy his golden years in less pain. Here are two natural pain remedies you can try right now.
1. Joint-pain Relief Supplements
The joint pain that accompanies arthritis in dogs is caused by deterioration of joint cartilage and a lack of natural lubrication in the joints. There are supplements that can help tackle both causes of joint pain, and although they may not alleviate his pain immediately, you will notice a huge difference in his activity level and comfort after several weeks of giving him the supplements daily.
Glucosamine/chondroitin supplements made for dogs can help rebuild healthy cartilage in your dog's joints when given to him daily. If this supplement sounds familiar, it is because many humans also take similar supplements for their joint pain with great success.
Oral type-2 collagen supplements have also been shown in studies to help relieve joint pain in dogs after just a few months of daily use.
Both of these supplements can easily be found online or in your local pet store, and they come in several forms, including liquids and "dog treat" form, so you can choose the form that your dog will like best.
Acupuncture is a great natural pain remedy for arthritis in dogs, and it works even more quickly than supplements. Many veterinarians recommend it for arthritic dogs who need pain relief, because there are no side effects to worry about and it can be done as often as necessary.
How is it done? A professional veterinary acupuncturist will insert tiny needles into the nerve bundles of your dog's body. This stimulates your dog's natural pain relief hormones, called endorphins, helps relieve inflammation, and it stimulates blood flow to increase your dog's natural healing abilities.
You don't have to worry that the needles will hurt your dog, because they are so tiny that he won't even feel them. He may even lie back and relax as the acupuncture begins to bring him pain relief he may not have felt for a long time or even fall asleep during his session. One session a week is typically recommended initially, and then you and your acupuncturist will decide if your dog needs to continue weekly sessions or is doing well enough to space them apart further.
If your dog has arthritis, then you have many natural options to help relieve his aching joints. Along with giving him a big soft bed to lay on, give him joint support supplements and try acupuncture, and you may be surprised when he begins to run around like a puppy again.