Hip Dysplasia in Weimaraners

HIP DYSPLASIA IN WEIMARANERS – WHAT IS IT?

Hip dysplasia is a degenerative condition, which can affect any dog. Although the causes may vary, the effects are always the same: loss of mobility, increasing pain, impaired gait, even behavioral and mood-changes in your dog, including snappishness and depression.

SIGNS THAT YOUR DOG MAY HAVE HIP DYSPLASIA:

  • Hobbles, or walks/trots with an irregular gait
  • Tries to keep weight off one of the rear legs
  • Starts to slow down or limp on a favorite walk or run
  • Stays in bed instead of playing outdoors
  • Whimpers or yelps when climbing stairs
  • Flinches when hip area or lower back are touched

WHAT HAPPENS IN HIP DYSPLASIA – WHY DOES IT HURT?

Dysplasia is simply the dislocation of a bone from its proper place. “Plasia” is the Greek word for molding, so it’s easy to visualize an architectural form, like a beam or column, separating from its stabilizing molding.  Hip dysplasia or displacement is one of the best-known types of dysplasia in dogs.

The degenerative process of hip dysplasia is gradual, and so the onset of symptoms—the pain, specifically—also is somewhat gradual, taking place over the course of years. In simple terms, the two bones of the hip joint shift out of alignment. The structure of a dog’s hip bones is similar to our human hip formation, consisting of a precisely fitted ball-and-socket joint. This is called a “spheroidal” joint, referring to the spherical head of the distal or articulating bone, which fits into the cup-like cavity of the accompanying bone.

Perhaps because they are such hand-working structures, the ball and socket joints are prone to disease, and to simple mechanical wear and damage over time. Winston’s Joint System and Winston’s Pain Formula, two products for dogs developed by a naturopathic doctor, offer support and relief for many conditions affecting the joints, including hip dysplasia and osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory diseases which also are common in dogs, attacking the cartilage, muscles and membrane linings of cartilage and joints.


 

HERE’S THE BREAKDOWN:

  • Hip dysplasia results in several symptoms which reduce mobility and cause pain:
  • The muscles and joints become lax, and the joint capsule, a strong band of connective tissue which circled the bones for added stability, loses its elastic strength.
  • As this happens, the articular (working) surfaces of the two bones lose contact with each other. The bones slowly separate as the soft tissues around the joint degenerate. The disease may affect both hips, or only the right or left.

WHAT CAUSES HIP DYSPLASIA?

Experts disagree as to the source of hip dysplasia in dogs.

  • TOO MUCH FOOD? One theory is that feeding a young, growing dog too many calories early in its development contributes to the disorder.
  • TOO MUCH EXERCISE? Another theory is that too much exercise, or the wrong kind of exercise, or simply too much high-impact exercise, such as fetching, jumping and catching a ball or Frisbee on concrete, contributes to hip dysplasia.

These theories are not conclusive, though of course appropriate nutrition and training are essential to the health and well-being of any pet.

A factual observation about this condition is that hip dysplasia tends to affect large breeds more so than smaller dogs. This, too, is relative—it is possible for small dogs to become affected by hip dysplasia, too.  However, we correctly associate the condition most frequently with big breeds.

These breeds do carry a genetic predisposition toward the condition. It is also true that purebreds, especially in these large dogs, are most likely to become vulnerable to hip dysplasia, therefore calling upon informed and responsible breeding practices.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Our first instinct as dog-lovers is to stop the pain. Sometimes our decision-making process is clouded by emotion—guilt, fear, even panic when we see our beloved canine companion suffering. Many conventional treatments for hip dysplasia in dogs have side-effects, or simply don’t work.

  • If your dog is clearly in pain, schedule a visit with your veterinarian. An X-ray examination will be recommended as a first step.
  • Monitor your dog’s weight. Obesity makes hip dysplasia worse. If your dog becomes less active, weight-gain may become a challenge. Eliminate treats, and if possible, offer your dog low-impact exercise like stretching and swimming.
  • Remove unnecessary physical stressors from your dog’s life.
  • Replace stairs with a ramp while your dog is recovering, to prevent further damage to the damaged hip.
  • Provide a padded dog-bed—sleeping on hard surface may increase the inflammation associated with hip dysplasia. A gel-bed, which actually contains a soft jelly that conforms to your dog’s body, relieves pressure from sore joints.
  • Experiment with low-heat heating pads or fleece-covered hot water bottle, as well as gentle massage, as ways to relax your dog and provide comfort during the healing process.

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?

Hip Dysplasia in Large and Older Dogs

Hip dysplasia in large and older dogs -medically referred to as Canine Hip Dysplasia (CHD)- is a common disease in large breeds. But it can also affect dogs of medium-sized breeds, although it’s rarer in small breeds.

WHAT ARE THE SIGNS OF HIP DYSPLASIA?

  • Hobbles, or walks/trots with an irregular gait
  • Tries to keep weight off one of the rear legs
  • Starts to slow down or limp on a favorite walk or run
  • Stays in bed instead of playing outdoors
  • Whimpers or yelps when climbing stairs
  • Flinches when hip area or lower back are touched

WHAT HAPPENS IN HIP DYSPLASIA – WHY DOES IT HURT?

Dysplasia is simply the dislocation of a bone from its proper place. “Plasia” is the Greek word for molding, so it’s easy to visualize an architectural form, like a beam or column, separating from its stabilizing molding.  Hip dysplasia or displacement is one of the best-known types of dysplasia in dogs.

The degenerative process of hip dysplasia is gradual, and so the onset of symptoms—the pain, specifically—also is somewhat gradual, taking place over the course of years. In simple terms, the two bones of the hip joint shift out of alignment. The structure of a dog’s hip bones is similar to our human hip formation, consisting of a precisely fitted ball-and-socket joint. This is called a “spheroidal” joint, referring to the spherical head of the distal or articulating bone, which fits into the cup-like cavity of the accompanying bone.

Perhaps because they are such hand-working structures, the ball and socket joints are prone to disease, and to simple mechanical wear and damage over time. Winston’s Joint System and Winston’s Pain Formula, two products for dogs developed by a naturopathic doctor, offer support and relief for many conditions affecting the joints, including hip dysplasia and osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory diseases which also are common in dogs, attacking the cartilage, muscles and membrane linings of cartilage and joints.


 

HERE’S THE BREAKDOWN:

  • Hip dysplasia results in several symptoms which reduce mobility and cause pain:
  • The muscles and joints become lax, and the joint capsule, a strong band of connective tissue which circled the bones for added stability, loses its elastic strength.
  • As this happens, the articular (working) surfaces of the two bones lose contact with each other. The bones slowly separate as the soft tissues around the joint degenerate. The disease may affect both hips, or only the right or left.

WHAT CAUSES HIP DYSPLASIA?

Experts disagree as to the source of hip dysplasia in dogs.

  • TOO MUCH FOOD? One theory is that feeding a young, growing dog too many calories early in its development contributes to the disorder.
  • TOO MUCH EXERCISE? Another theory is that too much exercise, or the wrong kind of exercise, or simply too much high-impact exercise, such as fetching, jumping and catching a ball or Frisbee on concrete, contributes to hip dysplasia.

These theories are not conclusive, though of course appropriate nutrition and training are essential to the health and well-being of any pet.

A factual observation about this condition is that hip dysplasia tends to affect large breeds more so than smaller dogs. This, too, is relative—it is possible for small dogs to become affected by hip dysplasia, too.  However, we correctly associate the condition most frequently with big breeds.

These breeds do carry a genetic predisposition toward the condition. It is also true that purebreds, especially in these large dogs, are most likely to become vulnerable to hip dysplasia, therefore calling upon informed and responsible breeding practices.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Our first instinct as dog-lovers is to stop the pain. Sometimes our decision-making process is clouded by emotion—guilt, fear, even panic when we see our beloved canine companion suffering. Many conventional treatments for hip dysplasia in dogs have side-effects, or simply don’t work.

  • If your dog is clearly in pain, schedule a visit with your veterinarian. An X-ray examination will be recommended as a first step.
  • Monitor your dog’s weight. Obesity makes hip dysplasia worse. If your dog becomes less active, weight-gain may become a challenge. Eliminate treats, and if possible, offer your dog low-impact exercise like stretching and swimming.
  • Remove unnecessary physical stressors from your dog’s life.
  • Replace stairs with a ramp while your dog is recovering, to prevent further damage to the damaged hip.
  • Provide a padded dog-bed—sleeping on hard surface may increase the inflammation associated with hip dysplasia. A gel-bed, which actually contains a soft jelly that conforms to your dog’s body, relieves pressure from sore joints.
  • Experiment with low-heat heating pads or fleece-covered hot water bottle, as well as gentle massage, as ways to relax your dog and provide comfort during the healing process.

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.

 

 

Side Effects of Rimadyl in Dogs

 

In the past you may have seen television commercials showing previously lame dogs jumping and running about like young puppies. These commercials were promoting Rimadyl, a drug introduced in 1997 by Pfizer Chemical for the treatment of hip dysplasia and arthritis in dogs. What the commercials carefully avoided was any mention of the side effects of Rimadyl in dogs.

Today it’s no longer possible to see those commercials because the advertising was halted by Pfizer for good reasons.

As a dog owner, we are indebted to dogs like Montana, a six-year-old Siberian husky who had stiff legs. Montana was prescribed Rimadyl by his veterinarian and at first the drug appeared to work well.

But then Montana lost his appetite, wobbled when he walked, and finally was unable to walk at all. He began vomiting and had seizures; eventually his owner was forced to put him to sleep. An autopsy was performed which showed the presence of liver damage that could only be associated with a harmful drug reaction.

Drugs for pets are big business in the United States, as well as in many other countries where pet animals are valued. It is estimated that world-wide, the sale of these drugs total more than 3-1/2 Billion dollars annually. Rimadyl is one of the bestselling drugs included in this estimate.

Rimadyl has been prescribed for more than four million dogs in the United States alone, and has earned Pfizer tens of millions of dollars.

After introducing the drug, the company ran full-page magazine ads and a public-relations campaign that resulted in 1,785 print stories, 856 radio reports and more than 200 television news reports of the benefits of Rimadyl.

What dog owner whose beloved pet was suffering from arthritis or hip dysplasia wouldn’t want such a “miracle drug” for their pet?

But Rimadyl has also resulted in many debates and intense arguments between veterinarians and pet owners who were furious that they were not warned of the risks of giving their pets Rimadyl.

After Montana’s owner contacted Pfizer and the Food and Drug Administration to complain about the early and untimely death of her dog, Pfizer offered to pay her $440 in what they called “a gesture of good will.”

Today we can be thankful that Montana’s owner was insulted by Pfizer’s offer and their lawyers’ stipulation that she tell no one about the payment (or bribe as some would call it).

She refused to sign any of Pfizer’s proffered documents and would not accept any money. She felt it was an affront both to her and to the memory of Montana to absolve Pfizer of any blame.

As additional reports of serious reactions and the deaths of many dogs started pouring into the FDA, the agency recommended that Pfizer list “death” as a possible side effect in a warning letter to veterinarians and also place a warning on the drug labels.

Pfizer indicated this “would be devastating to the product” and after much stalling, eventually was forced to put the word “death” on Rimadyl’s labels and notify all veterinarians in writing.

The strongest blow to Pfizer’s inappropriate labeling and advertising was the FDA’s requirement that they mention the same warning on their television ads. When given an ultimatum about their commercials mentioning “death” or else pulling the ads, Pfizer chose to stop all television ads for Rimadyl.

Although this came too late to save the life of Montana, he and his owner should be credited with bringing pressure to bear on the FDA and Pfizer and forcing them to begin warning of the possible serious side effects of Rimadyl.

Since the introduction of Rimadyl in 1997, the FDA has received reports of more than 1,000 dogs that died or had to be put to sleep, and 7,000 more that had serious adverse reactions after taking the drug.

Despite these serious side effects, the FDA has not ordered the removal of Rimadyl from the marketplace. The FDA requires safety and efficacy testing for animal drugs just as it does for human drugs. However, animal drug tests are conducted with a much smaller number of test subjects. Pfizer used about 500 dogs in their trials of Rimadyl, which is less than one fifth the number of subjects used in most human-drug trials.

During Pfizer’s Rimadyl trials, some dogs developed unusual liver-function readings and one young beagle tested on a high dose of the drug died.

Neither the FDA or Pfizer found these effects alarming, and the drug was subsequently approved. A consumer group has mounted a campaign against Pfizer called BARKS, which stands for “Be Aware of Rimadyl’s Known Side-effects.”

Hopefully this organization will be able to influence more dog owners to carefully consider very seriously whether or not to have Rimadyl prescribed for their pet 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.

Does Your Dog Have Trouble:

  • Walking?
  • Standing?
  • Getting up?

 

How to Tell If Your Dog Has Arthritis

You can tell if your dog has arthritis by watching for a number of symptoms. Arthritis in dogs is a condition affecting the skeletal system causing the joints in the legs to swell up and become painful. The disease can severely limit the ability of the dog to perform certain movements.

 

WHAT IS DOG ARTHRITIS?

Dog arthritis is one of the most common canine medical conditions. Arthritis affects the skeletal system, with erosion of the cartilage, which cushions our bones, or inflammation of the lining of the cartilage-membrane, being key symptoms.

The chief causes of arthritis are genetics, previous injuries/accidents, infection and immune system problems.

When cartilage, which protects the bone and makes up the joint, is destroyed, it is called degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis. This is a progressive disease that affects the weight-bearing joints such as hips, spine, knees and elbows.  About 25-30% of pets suffer with the same pain and debilitation as people. Normal stress on abnormal joints or abnormal stress on normal joint can result in cartilage destruction and changes in the bone.

WILL MY DOG GET ARTHRITIS?

NEWS ALERT:  Veterinarians estimate that around 1 in 4 dogs will experience arthritis, generally as a condition of old age.

Technically, there are different kinds of dog arthritis, and the causes may be slightly different. But what’s most relevant is how arthritis feels to your dog. It doesn’t feel good: chronic and acute pain, which generally increase as the condition progresses, define all types and degrees of dog arthritis

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ARTHRITIS, AND JUST FEELING SORE?

Everyone knows the feeling of waking up with “creaky bones.” Though this is a conversational, not medical, term, it pretty well describes what arthritis is all about.  As humans, we often experience this “creaky” feeling after a particularly hard bike-ride or other athletic work-out.  Salespeople and wait-staff may experience the feeling after a long day or hard night standing and walking on concrete floors.

We may wake up with this feeling, with its accompanying stiffness and soreness, after sleeping in a sleeping bag, or on an especially unforgiving futon or hide-a-bed. The reason, in these cases, is that our skeletal weight has not been properly supported and cushioned, either during a period of extreme exertion, or during the relative immobility of sleep.

When we are young and healthy, and our joints are well-lubricated and padded, this discomfort will naturally go away, usually with no more than the help of a deep stretch, a massage, a warm bath, and rest. In the case of humans, a couple of aspirin or ibuprofen may also help to dissipate the pain, although neither of these human remedies is recommended for dogs.

Winston’s Pain Formula and Winston’s Joint System are all-natural products formulated by a naturopathic doctor for his cherished dog. These products are trusted by dog-owners worldwide as a safe, effective treatment for joint issues, hip dysplasia, dog arthritis, and the pain, which dogs experience as the result.

As with humans, when dogs are young, and their joints are intact and healthy, they can generally rebound from trauma. With age, this capacity to recover diminishes. Many dogs will experience some form of dog arthritis as they age.

Arthritis is a degenerative condition, which worsens over time. There is no cure, although there are many possible treatments.

The bodies of many mammals, humans and dogs included, are made for endurance. Our muscles and skeletons literally are formed for long-duration running and climbing, because we are predators.

In many breeds of dogs, the skeleton and muscle-mass have evolved, or have been specifically bred, for hard work over long duration. Think of hard-working sled dogs, farm dogs and Shepherd breeds as an example.

Weight-bearing exercise tones our muscles and places stress on our bones. When we are young, this exertion makes us strong. Yet, with many thousands of repetitions, over the course of decades, the same mechanical process may contribute to arthritis.

For instance, when we lift weights, run or work out hard, we inflict microscopic “micro-tears” in our muscles. This is normal. Healthy, responsive muscle rebuilds itself quickly with a little nutritional support and rest. In fact, body-builders are keenly aware of this process, and are continuously balancing short-term damage self-inflicted on their muscles in order to build greater mass and strength. Likewise, walking, running and lifting weights actually stresses our bones. In fact, some stress is good for bone-density. A universally accepted treatment for osteoporosis is controlled, weight-bearing exercise.

All of the above applies to dogs as well as humans. What makes us tough and resilient when we are young can cause pain as the years pass.

HOW DO I KNOW IF MY DOG HAS ARTHRITIS?

Look for behavioral changes. In the beginning, these changes will be subtle. If you ignore them, the symptoms will be unmistakable. If left undiagnosed and untreated, dog arthritis can do permanent damage to your dog’s joints and bones, to the degree that even an easy-going walk around the block may no longer be possible.

Look for these signs of dog arthritis in your pet:

  • Slowing down. If your dog can’t keep up on regular walks, the reason may be that the dog is experiencing discomfort, meaning chronic, low-level pain.  Untreated dog arthritis inflammation gets worse with exertion. Snapping, yelping, irritability, mood-changes, biting. These often indicate acute, sharp pain. The sudden spike of acute pain is often what causes a loyal canine companion to snap at strangers—or even a trusted, familiar human friend.
  • Sleeping more and sleeping longer. Unlike cats, which tend to be more naturally nocturnal, dogs love the sunlight and are genetically programmed to be active during the day. If a dog sleeps the day away and is active at night, the reason may be the pain of dog arthritis.
  • Your dog lowers its rear end, and holds its hind legs closer together. This may be one of the more subtle signs of dog arthritis in its early stages. If your dog has arthritis in its rear hips or knees, the animal will try to relieve pain and pressure by shifting its weight forward, to its front end, while standing. You may also observe a downward, “slumped” posture, where the rear end seems lowered—this is commonly seen in German Shepherds. 
  • Your dog stands with its front legs more wide-apart than usual. This posture may be part of the same sign as the above. The dog is experiencing joint pain, and attempting to re-distribute its weight. This stance may be subtle at first, with the dog’s elbows pushed out instead of directly beneath its body. 
  • “Bunny Hopping”. This means that the dog presses its back legs together when it runs or trots, attempting to use its two hind legs as one. This is often a telltale sign in younger dogs of hip dysplasia, which often accompanies dog arthritis. If you observe even slight bunny-hopping, call your vet immediately.
  • Licking a painful joint. Obsessive licking is an animal’s attempt to soothe nerve-distress. If you’re not sure if your dog’s licking is simply normal grooming, take a close look at the color of your dog’s fur around its joints. A “bleached” or lightened appearance of the fur around a joint suggests that the dog is licking to ease pain (the enzymes in the animal’s saliva actually bleach the dog’s hair).
  • Difficulty getting up. When your dog struggles to its feet, and has trouble lifting its own weight securely, it’s usually a sign of stiffness which signals dog arthritis. Also watch the dog when it does stand up. Shaking of a limb, or wobbly posture, may signal weakness or pain in a hip or leg.
  • Doesn’t want to walk or play. Humans who share their lives with healthy, active dogs don’t even dare to utter the word “walk” (we spell it out, “W-A-L-K”) unless we’re ready to clip on the leash and head for the door. Dogs love to walk and run. It is in their nature as a species, and over many centuries of co-habitation, they have learned to share this love with us as their humans. A dog which does not literally jump for joy at the chance to walk with its human is not a happy, healthy, normal dog. 
  • Avoids stairs, jumping on the couch, jumping on the bed, jumping in the car. While initially you may appreciate the idea of less dog-hair on your couch or bed, an unwillingness to jump – requiring a forceful muscular propulsion using the rear legs and hips—signals trouble, most likely dog arthritis, hip dysplasia, or both. 
  • Limping. This is a clear indicator of dog arthritis, hip dysplasia, or both. You may also observe an overall tension in the dog’s body, as well as vocalizing (whining, whimpering, crying!). Your dog may also seem to favor one side, keeping its weight off the “bad” leg or hip.
  • Muscle loss (Muscle Atrophy). This is an effect of dog arthritis, which develops over time. In a healthy animal, both sides of the body are evenly matched in terms of size, bulk, shape and muscular development. A disorder such as dog arthritis may cause your dog to constantly take its weight off a painful limb. Over time, this may cause the muscles of that leg, or the leg on the side of an affected hip, to shrink from lack of use.

WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP MY PET WITH DOG ARTHRITIS?

  • Visit your vet. While your own observations and intuitions about your pet are invaluable, an examination by a licensed professional is the only way to know for sure whether your pet is suffering with dog arthritis. Consult with your veterinarian about Winston’s Pain Formula and Winston’s Joint System.  Glucosamine, NSAIDs and other more conventional treatments have a definite downside.
  • Remove obstacles from your pet’s path to recovery. Provide a ramp to the front door, so your dog doesn’t have to climb steps when in pain. Provide a doggie-ramp to your bed and couch so your pet can snuggle with the family.
  • Don’t make your dog sleep on a hard surface. Lack of support results in soreness and stiffness. Provide a padded bed, possible a gel-filled pad and low-level heating element for soothing, relaxing warmth as your pet heals.

There are genetic factors, which contribute to dog arthritis, but this process is primarily related to the aging process. Cell-turnover in both muscle-fiber and bone slows down with age, and recovery is less consistent. Injuries, such as a broken bone, and infections also may contribute to conditions associated with aging, including dog arthritis.

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?

 

Rimadyl For Arthritis in Dogs

What is Rimadyl? Rimadyl (generic name: carprofen), is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to treat the pain and inflammation of hip dysplasia and arthritis in dogs. Rimadyl provides 24-hour relief from these debilitating diseases by reducing a dog’s hormones that cause the pain and inflammation.

Rimadyl is available in three forms for easy administration of the drug: caplet, chewable or injection. Rimadyl chewable tablets taste like liver, which is tasty to most dogs, so the medication needs to be kept where the dog cannot gain access to it.

Cautions & overdose

Rimadyl overdose symptoms include nausea, vomiting, headache, drowsiness, stomach pain, seizures, or difficulty urinating.

Veterinarians prescribing Rimadyl warn that the drug should not be administered along with aspirin or any other NSAID. It also should not be used when a dog is taking steroids or corticosteroids like prednisone, prednisolone, or dexamethasone.

Rimadyl is not safe for a dog who has kidney or liver disease, or inflammatory bowel disease. A dog should be prescreened by a veterinarian for these diseases before the drug is prescribed.

A dog who is on Rimadyl for a prolonged time should also have its liver and kidney enzymes monitored on a regular basis.

Rimadyl Side-effects

There are side effects associated with Rimadyl. Some are common, and some are rare. Rimadyl has also been traced to the death of some dogs that have taken the medicine.

A dog owner whose pet is being given Rimadyl is advised to watch closely for any of the following symptoms:

  • loss of normal appetite
  • vomiting (sometime stained with blood)
  • diarrhea
  • black, tarry stool
  • unusual lethargy or drowsiness for extended times
  • hyperactivity
  • loss of balance, dizziness or weakness in legs
  • drastic or very unusual changes in eating habits
  • increased aggressive behavior
  • partial paralysis
  • seizures
  • jaundice

Any of these symptoms, especially several at the same time, can be an indication of a very serious problem. If these symptoms occur, stop administering Rimadyl and immediately contact your veterinarian.

Rimadyl Alternatives

If your dog is suffering from arthritis or hip dysplasia, there are safer alternatives to Rimadyl.

Supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin will work for some dogs, some of the time.

A much more effective treatment for arthritis and hip dysplasia is Winston’s Joint System, an all-natural formula developed by a Naturopathic Doctor to heal his own beloved dog. For over 20 years, this long-proven formula has been providing relief from the pain and stiffness of arthritis and hip dysplasia to all breeds and ages of dogs.

If your pet suffers from any of the following joint problems, I recommend that you try Winston’s Joint System to give your dog welcome relief from its pain:

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

Rimadyl for arthritis in dogs can be dangerous to an animal’s health. It is much safer for your pet to be placed on a daily regimen of Winston’s Joint System. Within the first 30 days of treatment, dogs show noticeable and often remarkable improvement. And, unlike drugs such as Rimadyl, Winston’s is safe for any 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.

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?

 

Arthritis in Dogs: Causes, Symptoms and Treatments

Arthritis is a debilitating condition affecting approximately 20% of all adult dogs. Arthritis generally develops when a dog is older but it can also affect younger dogs.

In order to provide a better quality of life for a dog with arthritis, a dog owner needs to understand arthritis, its symptoms, and what treatments are available for an affected dog.

What is arthritis in dogs

Arthritis is one of the most common medical conditions that affects our beloved pets. It’s a general term that is used to describe several different diseases that basically affect a dog’s joints in similar ways.

A simple way to describe and understand arthritis in a dog is that the disease causes painful inflammation of the dog’s joints.

Because arthritis occurs in about one in five adult dogs, it is one of the most common diseases treated by veterinarians. Like arthritis in humans, arthritis in dogs cannot be cured.

The good news is that arthritis is not inevitably hopeless. There are a number of effective treatments on the market today that can help ease your dog’s symptoms, allowing your pet to live a longer, active life.

What causes it

Since arthritis itself is more of a general condition rather than one specific disease, many other diseases like hip dysplasia, OCD, and degenerative joint disease are linked to it. A dog with arthritis will usually develop hip dysplasia or degenerative joint disease as the arthritis progresses.

There are several causes for arthritis in dogs. The condition can be genetic, as is the case with hip dysplasia, and it can also develop as the result of an infection or an immune disorder that affects the dog’s joints.

Arthritis associated with a degenerative joint disease is caused by repetitive pressure on a dog’s bones and is common to aging dogs. This type of arthritis can occur in younger dogs if they are genetically predisposed to the affliction. However, it’s more common in older dogs because their joints become lax after many years of use.

Because this type of arthritis is normally age-related, the treatment options are limited to alleviating the symptoms. In some cases, the arthritis is associated with an autoimmune disorder where the immune system mistakenly begins attacking the dog’s muscles and bones, thereby reducing the functioning of the joints and causing inflammation and irritation.

There often is a genetic predisposition toward this type of arthritis in certain breeds. Whether or not an affected dog is among those breeds is not important; it is imperative that a veterinarian determine why the dog’s immune system is malfunctioning and start the appropriate treatment as soon as the malady is diagnosed.

Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of arthritis in a dog will usually manifest over time, unless an autoimmune disease is the cause. Also, these signs or symptoms are often mistaken for other disorders.

The following symptoms may indicate arthritis in a dog:

  • Limping
  • Weight gain not caused by excessive overeating
  • Obvious favoring of one leg over the other
  • Acting less alert
  • Sleeping much more than usual
  • Avoiding the use of stairs
  • Having a lot of difficulty standing
  • A painful appearance when walking
  • A progressive unwillingness to exercise, play, or go for the usual walk
  • Urinating or defecating inside the house after being housebroken for many years

Treatment of arthritis in dogs

A veterinarian will decide on treatment options after conducting several tests on the dog to try to determine what factors are contributing to the disorder. The tests will include X-rays, blood work and occasionally an ultrasound.

• Dietary restrictions are often an integral part of any treatment for arthritis, since a reduction in weight helps alleviate some of the symptoms of arthritis in overweight dogs. A regular, easygoing exercise routine will be recommended to prevent too much pressure being placed on the dog’s weakening joints.

• Non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory medications like Rimadyl are sometimes used to help reduce inflammation in the dog’s joints. Rimadyl is a pain killer that veterinarians sometimes prescribe for dogs suffering from arthritis.

There are many pros and cons about giving a dog Rimadyl for arthritis pain. As a responsible pet owner, it would be a very good idea to research this drug as thoroughly as you can before giving your dog the medication.

• A much safer treatment, and one that many owners and vets agree is more effective, is to start an arthritic dog on a daily regimen of Winston’s Joint System, an all-natural formula developed by a Naturopathic Doctor to heal his own beloved dog who suffered from arthritis and hip dysplasia. This proven formula has been giving relief from pain and stiffness to all breeds and ages of dogs for over 20 years with remarkable results. Owners report that their pets have new vitality and alertness now that they are free of pain.

If the arthritis is not extremely severe and advanced to the point that your dog cannot walk at all without the aid of braces or a dog cart or wheelchair, the most common treatment for arthritis in dogs are supplements like Winston’s Joint System.

• In addition to feeding your dog Winston’s Joint System, you should massage its arthritic joints for about 10 minutes at least twice a day.

• And when you put your dog to bed for the night, apply heat using a heat pad or a hot water bottle.

Heat pads can be purchased specifically for dogs with conditions like arthritis, but a regular heat pad kept around the house for human use works just as well.

The heat works to relax the muscles and promotes increased mobility and activity. Just be sure that the heat level is low to medium, never set it on high, as too much heat could be very uncomfortable or even dangerous for your dog. We humans know when a heat pad is set too high and we simply turn the level down; but remember, not only does your dog have no fingers to work the switch, it also is unable to let you know if the heat is too high.

You can also use a hot water bottle in place of a heat pad. There are newer hot water bottles available that have fleece covers which feel softer on your dog’s body.

Heated pet beds are also available online or from most pet stores. You can also purchase an orthopedic bed with a heat element. This helps distribute your dog’s body weight and eliminates pressure points while soothing the joints and muscles.• Lastly, if you live in a part of the country that gets very cold in the winter, keep your dog warm inside and outside the house with clothing made especially for dogs. Many of these products are constructed of breathable material that insulates your dog’s body and keeps the chill out.

Arthritis can cause a lot of pain so try to make your arthritic dog as comfortable as you would like to be if you suffered from – or do suffer from – arthritic pain. It will make your dog’s life much easier and happier, and your dog will love you even more for the help you provide it.

Arthritis can have many causes and the symptoms are sometimes misdiagnosed as being another condition or ailment of an affected dog. The treatments for arthritis are limited, and many dog owners prefer the safety of a supplement like Winston’s Joint System rather than the sometimes questionable efficacy of a drug like Rimadyl.

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?

 

Degenerative Joint Disease – What Is It, Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

The terms arthritis, osteoarthritis, hip dysplasia, OCD, and degenerative joint disease are often used to describe the same joint problems in dogs.

But no matter what it is called, the result is pain and inflammation in a dog’s joints. The term “arthritis” is the most common one used to describe this joint disease that can easily -and usually does at some point- incapacitate a dog.

What is Degenerative Joint Disease?

Degenerative joint disease is characterized by the loss of the smooth cartilage that covers and protects the end of the bones in the dog’s movable joints.

There are no nerves in the cartilage, so when it touches the cartilage of another bone, the dog feels no pain.

But when the cartilage wears away due to aging or joint disease, the bone becomes exposed. The bone does have nerves, so when the two bone ends in a joint touch each other, it results in pain and inflammation – sure signs that some form of degenerative joint disease is present.

In degenerative joint disease, small bony projections form on the bone that is close to the joint. This adds considerably to a dog’s pain. This type of degenerative joint disease is progressive, meaning it continues to get worse until the poor dog has considerable difficulty getting up and down by itself. The pain is so severe in some dogs that they are unable to stand or walk.

What causes degenerative joint disease?

Degenerative joint disease can occur simply as a result of wear and tear on an otherwise normal joint and occurs as the dog ages. Veterinarians refer to this stage of the disease as “primary degenerative joint disease”.

Osteoarthritis may also occur as a result of another condition that affects a dog’s joints. This is what is known as “secondary degenerative joint disease” and is identified either as hip dysplasia or elbow dysplasia.

Which dogs are at risk of developing degenerative joint disease?

Certainly any dog with a congenital joint problem, like hip dysplasia, is going to be more prone to developing degenerative joint disease.

Dogs who have had injury to a joint such as a fracture involving the joint, or a ruptured ligament in the knee will be more likely to develop arthritis.

What are the symptoms of degenerative joint disease?

The symptoms of arthritis will vary as to which joints are involved, the age of the dog, and the severity of the disease.

The first symptoms an owner usually notices is a change in the way a dog walks since the dog will try to put more of its weight on the unaffected limbs. There may be muscle atrophy (reduction in the size of the muscle) in the affected limb because the dog is using it less, or at least putting less weight on it.

For a dog with hip dysplasia in both hind legs, the muscles of those legs may be thin, where the muscles of the chest and shoulders may increase in size because the dog is putting more weight on the front legs.

Many times the dog may find it difficult to get up after lying down and appears to be stiff. The dog also may be unable to jump up into the car. Many dogs with degenerative joint disease find it difficult to go up or down stairs.

Depending upon the amount of pain the dog is experiencing, its appetite may change and it may also choose to be alone more often.

The dog’s joints are generally not swollen and the pain it experiences is a dull aching type, so a dog usually will not cry out in pain. Some dogs will lick or bite at the area that is painful, while others will seek out warm or soft places to sleep.

How is degenerative joint disease diagnosed?

Your veterinarian will take a history of your dog’s symptoms and perform a complete physical exam. X-rays will be taken. Other lab tests or more detailed exams of the affected joints may be undertaken.

How is degenerative joint disease treated?

Some forms of degenerative joint disease can be treated without surgery. Winston’s Joint System is an all-natural formula developed by a Naturopathic Doctor to heal his own beloved dog. For over 20 years, this proven formula has been giving relief from the pain and stiffness of degenerative joint diseases to all breeds and ages of dogs. Owners who have discovered and used Winston’s report that their pets have a new-found vitality and alertness now that they are free of pain.

Degenerative joint disease does not heal itself. It is a progressive, debilitating disease that will continue to worsen without treatment. This is all the more reason to start your dog on Winston’s Joint System as soon as your vet gives you a diagnosis of hip dysplasia, arthritis, OCD, or any degenerative joint disease. Winston’s is a tried and proven formula that will slow down the progression of your dog’s joint disease and many dogs will respond well and can live comfortably for years. Your dog will love you for the gift of years of pain-free living.

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?

 

Arthritis in Older Dogs

Just like humans, older dogs are susceptible to many diseases, arthritis and hip dysplasia being two of the most common ailments. If your dog is affected by arthritis, there are some things you’ll need to do to make sure it’s comfortable at all times and has the ability – and mobility – to enjoy its “golden years.”

Arthritis is a problem affecting a dog’s joints and is caused by a natural reduction in glucosamine which is essential for healthy bones.

A dog’s joints become swollen and painful, making it difficult to move about.

Most dogs with arthritis will suffer from pain when attempting certain activities like walking or climbing stairs.

Remedies & treatment for arthritis in older dogs

Dogs with arthritis also require a special diet containing additional vitamins and minerals.

The diet for a dog with arthritis needs to be easily digestible and should contain fewer proteins. Carbohydrates should be eliminated from the dog’s diet as much as possible.

If the dog is obese, a weight loss diet is absolutely necessary because the extra weight can cause additional pain in the dog’s joints. Senior dogs are the most apt to suffer from arthritis and a vet may recommend a wet food diet for an older dog.

Arthritis in older dogs will require administering supplements that help with joint support and make the dog more comfortable. Winston’s Joint System is an all-natural formula developed by a Naturopathic Doctor to heal his own beloved dog. For over 20 years, this proven formula has been helping dogs find relief from the pain and stiffness caused by arthritis and hip dysplasia.

Dogs suffering from either of these debilitating diseases also need extra vitamins and minerals too. The dog will also benefit from a pain relieving supplement like Winston’s Pain Formula, It’s fast acting and highly effective and works exceptionally well with Winston’s Joint System to give comfort to an ailing dog.

Arthritis in older dogs can be more debilitating than it is for younger dogs. Younger dogs are usually able to handle the pain of arthritis a little easier and they may limp or slow down their movements, whereas an older, senior dog is unable to do the same.

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.

Arthritis, Dogs and Dinosaurs

Arthritis is one of the oldest diseases known to mankind. Surprisingly, science has shown that dinosaurs also had arthritis and there is evidence that early humans had the same chronic aches and pains. So it’s understandable that dogs can develop arthritis also. In fact, arthritis is a common disease affecting man’s best friend.

Did you know that managing your dog’s arthritis can help you better manage your own arthritis? Owning and being responsible for a pet dog can give you a positive outlook on life, improve your attitude and give a lift to your spirits. It is a fact that pet-owners tend to live longer and average fewer visits to their doctor’s office.

Arthritis affects dogs of all ages just as it affects people of all ages. If you notice changes in your dog’s mood and activity, and it doesn’t seem to be feeling too good, you may think it has a cold or stomach virus, but it could be arthritis. Arthritis affects one in every five adult dogs in the U.S. and is one of the most common sources of chronic pain that veterinarians treat.

The question then remains, how do you know if it’s arthritis? Your dog can’t tell you what’s wrong with it, so it’s important to watch for non-verbal cues and take even subtle changes seriously.

There are certain signs that your dog may have arthritis. You may notice it favoring one leg, experiencing difficulty sitting or standing, sleeping more, appearing to have stiff or sore joints, being hesitant to jump, run or climb stairs, gaining weight, being less interested in playing, demonstrating a decrease in normal activity, displaying changes in attitude or behavior, and being less alert.

If your dog displays any of these symptoms for more than two weeks, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian for an arthritis evaluation, which will involve a physical exam and X-rays. The best thing you can do for your dog to help manage arthritis is to get a diagnosis from the vet and start a treatment plan as soon as possible.

Recommended treatments may include the following:

(1) A healthy diet and exercise to help maintain proper weight

(2) Working with your veterinarian to find a drug treatment using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) which is the most common form of pharmaceutical treatment for arthritis in dogs

(3) Over-the-counter pet treatments, such as food containing either glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate or Omega fatty acids. These have been shown to offer some help in relieving the symptoms of arthritis in dogs

(4) A veterinarian-prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs and an over-the-counter treatment that together may help decrease pain and disease progression.

The most complete and effective treatment I have discovered for my own 8 year old Great Dane who has arthritis, is Winston’s Joint System, a combination of three, totally-natural whole food supplements developed by a Naturopathic Doctor for his own dog. With Winston’s there was no need for drugs, and my dog has never suffered from the common side-effects caused by the drugs because Winston’s is just good whole food. And I don’t have to be concerned about dosage problems either because my dog’s body uses only what it needs.

Within the first 30 days after I started treating my dog with Winston’s Joint System, he began to show significant improvement in his arthritis symptoms.

No matter how you choose to treat your dog’s arthritis, make sure you work with your veterinarian to ensure that you select the best program that helps your loving companion. Early diagnosis and treatment, maintaining a healthy weight, and regular exercise are critical in treating a dog with arthritis.