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The #1 source for immediate, long-term relief for dogs suffering from degenerative diseases like hip dysplasia, OCD and arthritis.

We are specialists in the treatment of canine joint disease and its accompanying pain.

Let us help put an end to your dog’s suffering, joint stiffness, pain, immobility, and poor quality of life. Our proven products will help you easily accomplish this without the use of drugs or invasive surgery.

Joint Issues

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Arthritis
  • Osteochondritis (OCD)
  • Stiffness/Inflammation
  • Ligament Tears
  • Growing Pains
  • Mobility Problems
  • Joint Pain
  • Back/Spinal Problems
  • Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy (HOD)

Symptoms

Is your pet becoming less active, less playful, or desiring shorter walks? The following symptoms could be early signs of OCD, Arthritis or Hip Dysplasia.

  • Moving more slowly
  • Difficulty getting up
  • Weight shift to another leg
  • Personality change
  • Reluctant to walk, jump or play
  • Refuses using stairs or the car
  • Change in appetite
  • Change in behavior
  • Muscle atrophy
  • Lagging behind
  • Yelping when touched
  • Limping
We Can Help!
 

Archive for the ‘Hip Dysplasia’ Category

Hip Dysplasia in Shih Tzus

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Hip Dysplasia in Shih Tzus is not as common as it is in larger breed dogs. However, the sad fact is that all sizes of dogs and many breeds are susceptible to this debilitating disease.

Hip Dysplasia in a Shih Tzu

Shih Tzus

Shih Tzus are lively and energetic little companions, but are low-keyed and easily satisfied.

They like nothing better than to be held, petted, and pampered by their owners, and are perfectly happy sitting on the couch with their owner for hours.

Their personality ranges from arrogance and haughtiness at times, to courageousness and politeness at other times.

A Shih Tzu makes a good family dog and adapts well to both children and adults, but they’re not particularly good with very young children as they can’t be handled roughly or awkwardly and they tend to get snappy when their patience wears thin.

They adapt well to apartment living, and while they don’t require as much exercise as large active dogs, daily walks are necessary.

They do make alert and reliable watchdogs, barking vigorously when anyone comes close to their house.

Shih Tzus require more care than other breeds if their hair is kept long. They need daily brushing and regular haircuts but they shed very little, making them a perfect pet choice for anyone who suffers from allergies.

The Shih Tzu is one of the world’s oldest dog breeds. Chinese paintings from the 6th century A.D. show Shi Tzu-like dogs, and historical records note that they were kept as house pets during the Ming Dynasty.

Shih Tzus have long flowing hair, including a tuft of hair above the nose that gives them their characteristic “chrysanthemum” face.

Their rounded heads have a long beard and moustache, a short muzzle and a black nose. Most Shih Tzus have round, dark, wide-set eyes with hanging ears covered with hair. They are longer than they are tall, and their tail curls over the back.

A healthy Shih Tzu can live as long as 15 years. Common health issues include ear and kidney infections, eye problems, and hip dysplasia.

Hip Dysplasia in Shih Tzus

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

To understand hip dysplasia in Shih Tzus and the resulting arthritis, you need a basic understanding of how the dog’s hip joint is affected.

The hip joint is comprised of a ball and socket that forms the attachment of the hind leg to the body. The ball portion is the head of the femur and the socket is located on the pelvis.

In a normal hip joint the ball rotates freely within the socket. The bones are shaped to perfectly match each other with the socket surrounding the ball. To strengthen the joint, the two bones are held together by a strong ligament.

The joint capsule, a strong band of connective tissue, circles the two bones to provide added stability.

What a normal hip joint looks like:

normal hip joint

Hip dysplasia is linked to 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.

What an abnormal hip joint looks like:

hip dysplasia joint

Most Shih Tzus who eventually 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.

Hip dysplasia in Shih Tzus will cause afflicted dogs to walk or run with an altered gait, similar to a bunny-hop. The dog begins to resist any movement that requires full extension or flexion of the rear legs. It will experience stiffness and pain in the 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.

It appears that the amount of calories a dog consumes, especially during its fast-growth period from three to ten months, has the biggest impact on whether or not a dog genetically prone to hip dysplasia will develop the disease.

Obesity can increase the severity of the disease in dogs that are genetically susceptible and the extra weight will intensify the degeneration of a dog’s joints and hips. Dogs who are genetically prone to hip dysplasia and also are overweight, are at a much higher risk of developing hip dysplasia and eventually arthritis.

Exercise can be another risk factor. Dogs genetically susceptible to hip dysplasia may have an increased incidence of the disease if they are over-exercised at a young age. Moderate exercise like running and swimming is best for exercising young dogs.

Treatment

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

Through proper diet, exercise, and a daily regimen of Winston’s Joint System, you can slow, and sometimes halt, the progression of this degenerative joint disease 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.

You might also want to consider providing your dog with an orthopedic bed like the Canine Cooler Bed which distributes the dog’s weight evenly and reduces pressure on its joints. The Canine Cooler Bed uses revolutionary SoothSoft Technology to give your dog the very best in comfort, and the fluid-enhanced design offers a dry, cooling effect with superior cushioning and support. It’s perfect for dogs with hip dysplasia or arthritis.

If owners insisted on only purchasing an animal whose parents and grandparents were certified to have good or excellent hips, and if breeders only bred these first-rate animals, then the majority of the problems caused by hip dysplasia would be eliminated.

If you are looking to purchase a Shih Tzu now or in the future, the best way to lessen the possibility of getting a dog that will develop hip dysplasia is to examine the incidence of the disease in the dog’s lineage. If at all possible, try to examine the parents and grandparents as far back as three or four generations.

There are different assumptions on how to prevent the progression of hip dysplasia in Shih Tzus.

Poor nutrition, inadequate or improper exercise, and increased body weight may all contribute to the severity of osteoarthritis after the hip dysplasia has developed. Watching the calories your puppy or young dog consumes and preventing obesity in your dog, allowing only non-stressful types of exercise, and a daily regimen of Winston’s Joint System, are the best things you can do for your dog.

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.

Animal Shelter Adoptions

Monday, November 16th, 2015


There are some important questions you need to ask about the health of any dog you’re considering adopting from an animal shelter. Most dogs available for people to adopt from city or county operated animal shelters are mentally stable and physically healthy.

Unfortunately, some dogs being offered for animal shelter adoptions have been abused or neglected by their former owners. Sometimes they have suffered from an illness or disease that might create problems for someone who wants to adopt a dog that will be with them for as long as possible and also won’t require a lot of expensive medical treatments.

To be fair to both yourself and the dog you’re considering for adoption, the questions you should ask the animal shelter staff are:

(1) Has the dog been spayed or neutered? It’s important to know the answer if you don’t want to breed the dog or bear the expense of having the procedure done;

(2) Are all the dog’s vaccinations up to date? Most dogs offered by shelters have had their vaccinations brought up to date, but ask if the dog has just arrived and whether the shelter has had time to give the dog any needed vaccinations;

(3) Has the dog needed any medical treatments since it arrived at the shelter? If it has, what treatments were given and what were they for? This will help you determine whether the dog may acquire certain illnesses in the future;

(4) Does the dog currently require any medications?

(5) Is the dog’s breed or breeds known to the staff? This will help you in understanding what types of health conditions the dog is predisposed to due to its breed, or mixture of breeds;

(6) Does the dog have any behavioral issues? Was the dog given up because it was dangerous or had serious behavior issues? This could definitely become a problem for anyone with small children or who has other dogs or cats in the home;

(7) How long has the dog been at the shelter? If the dog has been there for more than six months there’s a good chance that it may be suffering from mental distress after being cooped up and abandoned for such a long length of time;

(8) What kind of personality does the dog have? If it’s boisterous or overly active, it may not be appropriate for a family or even for a single person who has many time commitments in their life;

(9) Does the dog play well with the other dogs in the shelter or is it aggressive towards them?

If you’re considering an animal shelter adoption, you need to find out the answers to these questions before committing yourself to adopting your first, or next “best friend.”

Can Dogs Eat Apples?

Monday, November 9th, 2015


From time to time a friend will ask me if dogs can eat apples without getting sick. One friend called me in a panic on a Saturday morning after her pet Labrador snatched an apple off her kitchen counter and scarfed the whole thing down, including the seeds.

I told her not to worry as an apple is perfectly safe for a dog to eat. You should use caution though if you’re giving your dog whole apples as a treat since the covering of the seeds contains very small amounts of amygdalin, a compound that contains cyanide.

My vet believes that the stems of apples may also contain traces of cyanide, so I’m careful to remove the stem and seeds before giving my dog an apple. Seeds are not really that harmful because the seed coating has to be broken before the amygdalin is released, so if your dog eats the few seeds contained in an average size apple, there is nothing to worry about.

I always slice the apple and give it to my dog piece by piece because it’s safer than tossing him a whole apple to eat. As to how many seeds would be safe for a dog to consume, consider that an adult would need to eat a whole cup of seeds to feel ill.

Apples are tasty treats for dogs and provide the nutritional benefits of vitamin C and fiber, plus they’re low in sodium and saturated fat. They also contain calcium and phosphorus. The omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in an apple help make the dog’s skin and coat healthier.

All dogs should not be fed apples just because they contain nutrients. If a dog has kidney disease, the added calcium, phosphorus and omega-6 fatty acids may not be a good addition to its diet. Additionally arthritic dogs require monitoring of their omega-6 fatty acid levels. It’s best to check with your vet if your dog has kidney disease or arthritis.

The worst problems a dog would encounter from eating too many apples is an upset stomach or diarrhea. So when my friend asked me the question can dogs eat apples, I told her yes, but “In the future keep your dog out of the kitchen when you’re making pies.”

Health Problems in Older Dogs

Monday, September 7th, 2015

Owners of older dogs face special challenges in keeping their pets healthy. This necessitates remaining attentive to all the signs and symptoms of health problems in older dogs if you want to keep your pet healthy for as long as possible.

Health Problems in Older Dogs

Dogs are considered to have reached old age by the last third of the typical lifespan for their breed.

If you notice that your senior dog seems to have less energy than it used to, it’s simply due to a natural slowing of the dog’s metabolism.

Older dogs are at an increased risk of developing diseases in their later years. Common health problems in older dogs include arthritis, hip dysplasia, congestive heart failure, and kidney failure.

If you’ve allowed your dog to become obese or seriously overweight, it places extra stress on the dog and worsens all of these conditions. Therefore, it’s important to maintain an older dog’s ideal weight by combining the right diet and sufficient exercise.

Older dogs are more accident-prone than younger dogs, so it’s imperative that you help your dog prevent falling over objects in the house or yard. Also watch for large cracks and uplifted areas of sidewalks when taking your dog for a walk.

Health problems in older dogs

Three of the most serious health problems in older dogs are:

Arthritis and Hip Dysplasia
Arthritis usually worsens with age or may not develop until a dog is older. The disease causes significant joint pain and stiffness in dogs. A dog suffering from arthritis will experience impaired mobility and will limp or have difficulty running and climbing stairs.

Hip dysplasia is an abnormality of the hip joint and is one of the main causes of severe arthritis.

Regular non-strenuous exercise, combined with nutritional supplements like Winston’s Joint System, will help lessen the pain and discomfort caused by arthritis and hip dysplasia. Winston’s was designed to help dogs suffering with joint diseases like arthritis, bursitis, osteochondrosis (OCD), hip dysplasia and other degenerative problems obtain long-term relief without drugs.

Winston’s Pain Formula is an excellent addition to help ease a dog’s pain and discomfort. This powerful and natural pain relief product is fast-acting and highly effective. It works exceptionally well with Winston’s Joint System to help a dog recover much faster.

It’s also important that an obese or overweight dog lose weight to help take the pressure off its stressed joints caused by the arthritis or hip dysplasia.

Sleeping can also be a problem when the pain of arthritis or hip dysplasia is severe. To ease the pain in your dog, I recommend using the Canine Cooler Bed to soothe your dog’s inflammation and painful joints. It has really helped my older dog and he loves his bed.

Congestive Heart Failure
Congestive heart failure is a painful condition that can affect a dog at any age, but older and overweight dogs are more apt to succumb to this disease. Dogs with congestive heart failure accumulate fluid in their lung and chest cavities because their weakened heart can no longer efficiently pump their blood.

The symptoms of congestive heart failure include coughing, difficulty breathing, bluish tongue and gums, dizzy spells, sudden fatigue, a potbellied-looking abdomen, and weight loss. There is no cure for this disease and treatment consists only of drug therapy and vitamin supplements.

Your dog will need to be fed foods low in sodium and high in protein. Regular exercise is also very important. Should your dog collapse during exercise or any other activity, seek medical attention immediately as this is an emergency situation.

Kidney Failure
Aging usually impairs kidney function in dogs and can result in kidney failure.

Chronic kidney disease sometimes goes undetected for years. You should be alert to the symptoms of kidney disease which include excessive thirst, excessive urination, weight loss, and fatigue.

Being proactive about health problems in older dogs

Keeping your dog healthy becomes very important when it reaches old age. Graying hair and irritability are common in senior dogs but never assume that physical and behavioral changes are simply due to old age.

Keeping track of your dog’s illness symptoms, staying on schedule for its check-up appointments, and providing preventative care will help keep your dog feeling and acting younger.

Being proactive about your dog’s health will directly impact its life expectancy and ensure that any disease can be diagnosed at its beginning and treated in the early stages, improving the odds for recovery, or at least a more comfortable existence for you beloved pet as it ages.

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.

Veterinary Specialists

Monday, July 13th, 2015


There are several types of veterinary specialists that often assist regular veterinarians in their practices. A general veterinarian is effective at treating most of the ailments and diseases of a pet dog, but there may be a time when a specialist needs to be called in to handle more serious conditions.

Specialist veterinarians are trained to handle specific treatments dealing with animals. These include surgery, anesthesiology, emergency care, nutrition, and dentistry.

Surgical Specialists
Surgical veterinary professionals specialize in animal surgical operations. They receive specialized training for an extensive variety of different surgical techniques that many veterinarians are not trained to undertake nor are qualified to perform.

Because surgery can be very stressful and dangerous for an animal, you’ll want to be sure your pet is in the hands of a trained surgical veterinary specialist.

Anesthesiologists
Just like in humans, anesthesia is used during animal surgery and occasionally during some diagnostic testing procedures. Most vets will use anesthesia for certain diagnostic tests but many use the skills of an anesthesiologist when a dog needs to undergo a surgical procedure.

The anesthesiologist is trained to handle cases of allergic reactions and the treatment of life-threatening situations related to the administration of anesthesia.

Emergency Care Specialists
Emergency care specialists are trained to handle any type of animal emergency medical condition including traumas, strokes, heart attacks, and emergency injuries. These specialists are trained to react rapidly to a pet’s needs and diagnose the situation quickly so treatment or life-saving measures can be undertaken.

Nutrition Specialists
Nutritional specialists are beneficial in prescribing the healthiest and most appropriate diet for a pet. Some dogs suffer from obesity and its related ailments and diseases. A nutritional specialist can assist you in putting your dog back on track to controlling its weight and improving its health.

Nutritional specialists are also useful when certain medical conditions like diabetes require a change in diet. For diabetes, a specialist will recommend a strict low-sugar diet to help your dog control its diabetes.

Dentistry Specialists
Because dental care is vital to the overall general health of an animal, dental veterinary specialists are concerned only with animal dentistry. Examining an animal’s teeth and cleaning them properly can be a difficult task for both an owner and a veterinary assistant. If your dog’s teeth or gums are in bad condition, it’s a good idea to have a trained dental specialist examine and treat the dog’s teeth, and mouth, to restore your pet to optimum health.

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