What Can I Do About Hip Dysplasia In My Dog?

Hip dysplasia in dogs is a genetic disorder that is not preventable if you own a dog predisposed to the disease. However, there are several things you can do, such as proper nutrition and exercise, that will reduce the early onset and intensity of hip dysplasia in your dog.

Hip dysplasia is a genetic disorder occurring more often in certain breeds. It is caused by a partial dislocation of bones in the dog’s hip joints, leaving them misaligned but still in contact with each other, which causes erosion of the tissues that keep the joint moving smoothly.

What can you do about hip dysplasia if your dog is predisposed to the disease?

Proper Breeding

Some breeders are irresponsible and will breed a dog knowing it is susceptible to hip dysplasia, or will breed a dog too young to be properly tested, and the result is an increased occurrence of the disease. Every breeder who breeds dogs genetically prone to hip dysplasia should have their dogs checked before breeding.

If you intend to purchase a dog from a breeder, research the genetic diseases of the breed you want and ask the breeder if they test for those diseases. If they can’t (or won’t) give you a health certificate from a licensed veterinarian, you will be much better off looking elsewhere. You will end up saving yourself a lot of money and heartbreak in the future if you’re careful in selecting your new canine companion.

Proper Nutrition

A study done on Labrador retrievers showed that obesity increases the onset of hip dysplasia. Overweight adolescent dogs are more likely to suffer from hip dysplasia as are dogs that don’t receive sufficient amounts of calcium and other nutrients during their adolescent stage.

When your dog is young, feed it a high-quality diet. Don’t buy pet foods that have cheap fillers like corn and wheat or ones that contain meat byproducts, all of which have very little nutritional value. Choose foods for your young dog that have high-quality proteins listed as the first three ingredients and that don’t have preservatives added.

Proper Exercise

Exercise and mental stimulation are an important part of development of puppies but over-exercising at a young age can prevent the proper growth of bones, muscles and joints, leading to joint problems like as hip dysplasia and arthritis.

Running and swimming are excellent ways to exercise a young dog, but avoid activities that involve a lot of jumping, like Frisbee, until your puppy is a few years old.

One of the least expensive things you can do to ease hip dysplasia in a dog, you might want to use a ramp for getting in and out of your car or off of high furniture until it reaches 18 to 24 months of age.

Supplements

If your dog already suffers from hip dysplasia or arthritis, a safe and proven supplement for treating your pet is Winston’s Joint System, a combination of three, totally-natural whole food supplements developed by a Naturopathic Doctor for his own dog. It contains no drugs and there are no side-effects because it’s just good whole food. And there are no dosage problems because your dog’s body uses only what it needs.

Winston’s provides many of the raw materials essential for the synthesis of the joint-lubricating synovial fluid as well as the repair of articular cartilage and connective tissue. It also includes a natural anti-inflammatory compound, long used to relieve the pain of arthritis.

Hip dysplasia is a genetic disease that often can’t be prevented; but that doesn’t mean there is nothing you can do about hip dysplasia in your dog. By selecting a dog from a responsible, professional breeder, feeding your puppy and adult dog a healthy diet, and reducing high-impact exercise, occurrences of the disease can be reduced. Hip dysplasia is a progressively degenerative disease, so any amount of help you can give your dog, will begin to stop things from getting worse.

Since 1990, Winston’s Joint System and Winston’s Pain Formula have helped heal over twenty thousand dogs from all over the world. Our staff specializes in hip dysplasia, arthritis and all joint, pain and mobility issues.

There is an excellent chance we can help your dog, so please contact us at: www.dogshealth.com or call our toll free number at 888-901-5557.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?

 

Older Dogs And Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is one of the most common behavior problems seen in older dogs. Although younger dogs often display separation anxiety after their owner leaves the house, an older dog with separation anxiety will become very anxious when it senses its owner is about to leave the house.

When the owner does leave, the dog may become destructive, bark or howl, and possibly even urinate or defecate in the house. An older dog suffering from separation anxiety will often become overly excited when its owner returns home.

Older dogs often have a decreased ability to cope with changes in daily routines. Their vision and/or hearing loss may make them more anxious than normal, especially when they find themselves separated from their owner. Many veterinarians believe that neurological changes also limit an older dog’s ability to adjust to any changes in household routines.

    Treating separation anxiety in an older dog can be handled in several ways:

Don’t make a big deal when you do have to leave home – this only serves to reinforce the behavior.

Determine the length of time you can leave your dog alone before it becomes overly anxious. Start by leaving your home for short periods of time and then gradually increase the time you are gone, always returning before your dog becomes anxious. This may take several departures by you, or possibly as long as a couple weeks, so patience is the key.

Connect leaving the house with something good. When you’re ready to leave, give your dog a small treat. This may take its mind off your leaving. Anxiety can feed on itself, so if you prevent the anxiety from occurring when you leave, your dog may remain calm after you leave.
Make your dog’s environment as cozy as possible during the time you’ll be gone. A comfortable temperature, a soft bed, tuning your TV to Animal Planet, or playing soft, easy-listening music on the radio can have a soothing affect on your dog. Some dogs will be more relaxed if they can see outside, while others may become more anxious if left by a screen door or large window – especially if there happens to be small animals like cats or squirrels cavorting around outside. Only you can discover what’s best for your dog.

Teach your dog to relax. If you can teach your dog to relax by commanding it to “stay” for extended periods while you’re home, learning how to relax while you are gone will become much easier for your dog.

Change your departure signals. Many dogs understand that when the alarm goes off, it means today is a work day and you are going to leave the house. If your dog starts getting anxious as soon as it hears the alarm then it would be wise to introduce some small changes in your workday routine so your dog doesn’t know you’ll be leaving. For instance, pick up the car keys and then go sit on the couch. If it’s a Saturday, try getting up and dressing as if you’re going to work, but stay home. This may confuse your dog at first but should help break its association of the alarm going off with your leaving home.

If you are gone for extended periods during the day, leaving your dog all alone, you might want to have a friend or neighbor come in during the day to let your dog out and give it some exercise. Older dogs often need to go outside more often to urinate and defecate. By letting your dog outside more often, you may decrease its anxiety.

Some older dogs who have been house-trained for years, may start having “accidents” in the house. As with other behavior problems in older dogs, there can be several causes for this change in behavior. Medical conditions like colitis, inflammatory bowel disease, infections of the bladder or prostate, Cushing’s disease, and kidney or liver disease can result in an increased frequency of urination or defecation and could be the cause for these types of “accidents”. Also, degenerative joint diseases like hip dysplasia and arthritis can cause severe pain and make it difficult for the dog to get up and go outside to take care of its bodily functions. Treatment of these degenerative joint diseases with Winston’s Joint System will not only help heal your dog, but also allow it to regain mobility and can resolve any behavioral problems related to these diseases.

If degenerative joint diseases are contributing to the house soiling problem and arthritis or hip dysplasia is the cause, you may want to build a ramp to the outside so your dog won’t have to struggle going up and down stairs. Slick floor surfaces should be covered with non-slip area rugs or other material. If your dog urinates or defecates inside the house, thoroughly clean the area with an enzyme cleaner. And if your dog develops a need to urinate or defecate frequently, you may need to change your daily schedule or else find a friend or pet sitter who can take the dog outside when needed.

Some older dogs will become restless at night and stay awake, pacing through the house, and barking or issuing low, throaty howls. Pain from joint diseases, an increased need to urinate or defecate more often, a loss of vision or hearing, and neurological conditions can contribute to this behavior.

Older dogs need more love and attention than young puppies or young adult dogs. Give your beloved aging companion the love and care it deserves. You will be rewarded with more genuine love than you’ll receive from younger dogs.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?

 

 

Dogs With OCD

Dogs with OCD (or Osteochondrosis) suffer a great deal of pain and mobility issues.

When a dog has OCD, fragments of bone and cartilage become detached from larger bones and end up floating around the area encompassing a dog’s joints. The result is that any movement in the joint where those fragments are located will cause a dog to suffer from severe pain.

What is Osteochondrosis (OCD)

OCD is a congenital problem that usually affects only larger dogs who seem to be predisposed to the condition.

The best way to understand the true cause of this condition is that it is a disease of the cartilage that results in large pieces of cartilage and bone becoming detached and floating freely. This causes a dog with OCD a lot of pain.

These free floating bone and cartilage pieces can lead to the development of arthritis, hip dysplasia, secondary degenerative joint disease, or other side effects.

There are several variations of osteochondrosis (OCD), and all typically affect the dog’s joints at the ankle, shoulder, elbow and knee on one or both sides of a dog’s body.

The different types of OCD are distinguished by their location on a dog’s body. They are also differentiated from each other based on the severity and the primary cause of the condition.

It’s more common for OCD to affect the forelimbs than a dog’s hind feet and legs.

Symptoms of OCD in dogs

To properly treat and identify OCD in your pet, you need to be able to recognize the symptoms of this disease. OCD can develop at any stage of a dog’s life, although it is more common in younger dogs than in older ones.

Dogs with OCD will show some of the following warning signs:

  • Pain when the affected limb is touched;
  • Muscle degeneration on the affected side of the dog’s body;
  • A general limitation of movement;
  • Lameness or difficulty moving around.

How to diagnose and treat OCD in dogs

A veterinarian will diagnose osteochondrosis using a series of X-ray tests.

Treatment of the disease requires lifestyle changes. The dog’s exercise routine must be changed to ensure that the dog can remain active and suffer fewer mobility problems.

Dogs suffering with joint diseases like OCD, arthritis, bursitis, hip dysplasia and other degenerative problems with the shoulders, elbows and hocks can find immediate and long-term relief without drugs with a regular regimen of Winston’s Joint System, a combination of three, totally-natural whole food supplements developed by a Naturopathic Doctor for his own dog. Winston’s contains no drugs and there are no side-effects.

Winston’s Pain Formula is another product proven to be fast acting and highly effective in relieving the pain in a dog caused by these diseases. Both of these products help your dog recover much faster.

Dogs with OCD will require a change in diet and careful observation to prevent overfeeding and weight gain which contribute to damage of the joints due to OCD. Work with your vet to determine if your dog’s diet is properly supporting its joint health or if it can be changed to be more effective.

Since 1990, Winston’s Joint System and Winston’s Pain Formula have helped heal over twenty thousand dogs from all over the world. Our staff specializes in hip dysplasia, arthritis and all joint, pain and mobility issues.

There is an excellent chance we can help your dog, so please contact us at: www.dogshealth.com or call our toll free number at 888-901-5557.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?

 

Removing Pet Odors From Your House

Removing pet odors from your house can be easy and you’ll create a healthy environment for you and your family or guests. The key to removing these odors is to first remove the source if you expect the smell to completely disappear and not have it return shortly after you’ve cleaned.

If you have a pet dog (or maybe two) you know exactly what it’s like to live with gobs of hair, a sofa and chairs that smell strange, and the ever so popular urine on your rugs and carpets.

Living with your pet day in and day out, it’s easy to get used to these odors and not even notice that sometimes your house smells like a kennel.

The first thing you’ll need to do is give your dog a bath on a regular basis. This will depend on factors like how long your dog’s coat is, whether it’s strictly an inside dog or whether it always runs around your yard, and whether you let your dog roll about in the dirt or whatever it feels like romping around in. If a dog is dirty it will spread mud or filth all over your house.

You’ll also need to be vigilant in removing excess hair from your dog and not wait until it’s all over your furniture.

Once a week remove any dog hair from your furniture using a standard vacuum cleaner with the side attachment. Just vacuum the furniture until all the hair is gone. You can also use a lint roller to pick up the loose hair.

Your floors should be cleaned at least once a week. Rugs and carpets vacuumed, and wood or tile floors swept clean before mopping. On tile or linoleum floors you can use bleach to be sure all the bacteria is killed.

Replace the air conditioning and furnace filters once a month. Loose dog hair tends to stick to filters.

Disinfecting hard surfaces that your dog comes in daily contact with will help remove any lingering odors, and by using a sanitizer you can kill more than 99% of all germs, including cold and flu viruses that may be clinging to surfaces in your home.

Standard spray air fresheners will only mask the scents in your house and you’ll end up with a dog that smells like a pet covered with flowers. Buy a spray that removes odors instead of covering them up.

You’re going to need a pet stain and odor remover if you want to get rid of all urine odors. An inexpensive and just as effective method for removing these odors is to spray the urine stained areas with a mixture of half vinegar and half water.

You should wash your pet’s bedding at least two times a month, then spray it for a fresh, clean scent.

Removing pet odors from your house doesn’t need to be a time consuming chore that you hate to face every week. Just follow the instructions above and soon your house will be free of unpleasant dog odors.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?

 

Dogs Who Develop Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is a genetic disease that primarily affects large and giant breeds of dogs but can also affect medium-sized breeds, and some small breeds. It is primarily a disease of purebreds, although it can also occur in mixed breeds.

Dogs who develop hip dysplasia suffer from an abnormal joint structure and a laxity of the muscles, connective tissue, and ligaments that would normally support the dog’s hip joints.

As the disease progresses, the articular surfaces of the two bones lose contact with each other. This separation of the two bones within the joint causes a drastic change in the size and shape of the articular surfaces.

Most dogs who develop hip dysplasia are born with normal hips, but due to their genetic make-up the soft tissues surrounding the joint develop abnormally. This leads to the symptoms associated with hip dysplasia. The disease may affect both hips, or only the right or left hip.

The symptoms of hip dysplasia cause afflicted dogs to walk or run with an altered gait, similar to a bunny-hop. They begin to resist any movement that requires full extension or flexion of the rear legs. They will experience stiffness and pain in their rear legs after exercising and on first rising in the morning. Climbing stairs becomes difficult if not impossible. Some dogs will limp and are less willing to participate in normal daily activities, including walks they formerly enjoyed.

Because hip dysplasia is primarily an inherited condition, there are no products that can prevent its development.

Through proper diet, exercise, and a supplement such as Winston’s Joint System, you can slow, and sometimes halt, the progression of these degenerative joint diseases while providing your dog with relief from its pain. Winston’s provides many of the raw materials essential for the synthesis of the joint-lubricating synovial fluid as well as the repair of articular cartilage and connective tissue.

Dogs who develop hip dysplasia

Dogs who are prone to develop hip dysplasia include the following (alphabetical order):

  • Afghan Hound
  • Airedale Terrier
  • Akita
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • American Eskimo Dog
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • American Water Spaniel
  • Anatolian Shepherd
  • Australian Cattle Dog
  • Basset Hound
  • Beagle
  • Belgian Malinois
  • Belgian Sheepdog
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Bichon Frise
  • Black and Tan Coonhound
  • Black Russian Terrier
  • Bloodhound
  • Border Collie
  • Border Terrier
  • Bouvier des Flandres
  • Boxer
  • Brussels Griffon
  • Bulldog
  • Bullmastiff
  • Cardigan Welsh Corgi
  • Chesapeake Bay Retriever
  • Chinese Shar-Pei
  • Chow-Chow
  • Collie
  • Curly-Coated Retriever
  • Dalmatian
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • English Cocker Spaniel
  • English Foxhound
  • English Setter
  • English Springer Spaniel
  • French Bulldog
  • German Shepherd
  • German Shorthaired Pointer
  • German Wirehaired Pointer
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • Golden Retriever
  • Great Dane
  • Great Pyrenees
  • Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
  • Irish Setter
  • Irish Water Spaniel
  • Irish Wolfhound
  • Keeshond
  • Labrador
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Mastiff (and American Mastiff)
  • Newfoundland
  • Norwegian Elkhound
  • Old English Sheepdog
  • Pembroke Welsh Corgi
  • Pointer
  • Portuguese Water Dog
  • Pug
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback
  • Rottweiler
  • Saint Bernard
  • Samoyed
  • Shetland Sheepdog
  • Shiba Inu
  • Shih Tzu
  • Siberian Husky
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Standard Schnauzer
  • Weimaraner
  • Welsh Springer Spaniel

** This is by no means a complete list of dogs who can develop hip dysplasia.

It is also important to understand that just because your dog’s breed is on this list, it does NOT mean that it will develop hip dysplasia at some point in its life.

Since 1990, Winston’s Joint System and Winston’s Pain Formula have helped heal over twenty thousand dogs from all over the world. Our staff specializes in hip dysplasia, arthritis and all joint, pain and mobility issues.

There is an excellent chance we can help your dog, so please contact us or call our toll free number at 888-901-5557.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?

 

Common Infections in Dogs

Some common infections in dogs can result in minimal problems for the health of the animal, but infections can also cause major illnesses that can be fatal. As a responsible pet owner you should be aware of these common infections and their symptoms in order to determine whether your dog is having a bout with an illness that will cure itself, or whether the symptoms are indicative of a serious disease. Early recognition and treatment of infections are your best protection against a severe illness or the death of your pet.

Rabies is one of the most common infections in dogs. The symptoms of rabies may not become noticeable for days or even months after a dog has been infected with the disease. The symptoms include refusing to eat or drink water, a high fever, seizures, and foaming at the mouth. Some dogs will exhibit what is called “mad dog syndrome.” A dog with this syndrome can become extremely aggressive and will attack humans or other dogs. Vaccination is not only your safest protection against a dog contracting rabies, but also is mandatory in almost every city and town in the U.S.

Parvovirus is another extremely contagious disease commonly found in dogs, and also requires vaccination with a follow-up shot every year. It is usually contracted through exposure to the infected feces of a dog or other animal. The symptoms of parvovirus include lethargy, vomiting blood, or diarrhea and loss of appetite.

Ear infections in dogs are more common in floppy eared dogs and dogs who spend most of their time outdoors. The symptoms include excess wax build up in the ear canals, a foul smelling odor from the dog’s ears, and pawing or scratching the ears. Ear infections can be treated with a drying cream from a pet store. Insert the cream into the dog’s ear and rub it in well. The cream will act as a drying agent and soak up the excess moisture in the dog’s ears. Serious ear infections require treatment by a veterinarian.

Distemper is a highly contagious infection that affects the respiratory, nervous and gastrointestinal systems in a dog. Like parvovirus, the infection is transmitted when an animal is exposed to feces that contain the virus. All dogs are at risk of contracting distemper, but puppies under four months of age are especially at risk. There is no cure for distemper but there are medications to help control the disease and keep it from worsening. Distemper vaccinations are also required annually for puppies and dogs.

The common cold in dogs is most commonly caused by kennel cough when an upper respiratory infection affects a dog’s lungs and sinuses. The symptoms include nasal discharge and sneezing, continual coughing spells, and great difficulty in breathing. Dogs who have strong immune systems are usually able fight off the infection before it becomes serious. Kennel cough is extremely infectious but can be treated and eradicated if caught in the early stage.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?