Is your dog suffering from joint pain? Learn about CBD for dogs with Osteoarthritis.
What is the Difference Between Arthritis and Osteoarthritis?
Arthritis is generally defined as inflammation of the joints while Osteoarthritis is the damage or deterioration of cartilage between the joints. This cartilage acts as a cushion or shock absorber between joints and allows for a range of motion. If the cartilage becomes damaged or gets worn out, it creates friction when bones come into direct contact which creates pain and inflammation.
The body may try to compensate by producing bone spurs in an attempt to repair the damage.
Additional symptoms may be experienced if it presses on nerves like weakness, numbness, and tingling and pain if it presses on other bones.
What are the Symptoms of Osteoarthritis?
These symptoms are indicative your dog is experiencing pain. Unfortunately, our pets are unable to tell us directly how they are feeling so we need to be on the lookout for these symptoms to catch them early.
You may notice these symptoms are similar to how a human would act when experiencing discomfort, such as trouble climbing stairs and being cranky when physically uncomfortable and this way we can empathize with our pets.
Currently, there are about 77.2 million dogs in the United States with some form of arthritis.
1 in 5 dogs over the age of 7 have some form of arthritis.
Does CBD Help with Osteoarthritis in Dogs?
A Resounding Yes!
This is a quick summary of a recent 90-day trial using Hemp extract and Hemp oil involving dogs with maladaptive pain caused by Osteoarthritis where 30 out of 32 dogs showed positive results (93%) including:
- Improved mobility
- Reduced anxiety
- Reduced pain
- An increase in activity
- More Attentive
- More Animated
- More mentally engaged
- Slept less
- Interacted more
- A decrease in occurrence of epileptic seizures
- No noticeable side effects.
Out of 32 dogs, 23 were taking Gabapentin (a medication used for chronic pain) at the time of enrollment.
These dogs have been taking Gabapentin between 3 months to 10 years.
At the end of the trial, 10 dogs discontinued taking the medication while 11 reduced their dosage with the addition of CBD oil.
2 reported no noticeable changes. These dogs represented a wide variety of breeds and were between 2 to 16.6 years old and 5 to 50 Kg. Click here to read the complete study
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What causes Osteoarthritis in dogs?
Generally speaking, the older the dog and the bigger the breed, the higher the risk.
Contributing factors are:
- Obesity – Excess weight is a large contributing factor. It may add stress to the joints and even cause an early onset. Weight control may help prevent this condition especially in large dogs
- Dogs who are diabetic or have Cushing’s Disease
- Injury or trauma
- An inherited condition such as Hip Dysplasia or Elbow Dysplasia
- Abnormal joint development
- Age and natural wear and tear
- Diet – Some foods may may cause inflammation and some may prevent it
What To Feed And What To Avoid
AVOID foods known to cause inflammation such as grains, corn, omega-6 oils such as corn, safflower, canola, sunflower oil, added salt, and sugar as well as additives and ultra-processed dog treats.
DO FEED foods which are known to prevent inflammation such as lean meat like grass-fed beef, chicken, turkey. Omega3 from salmon, tuna, and mackerel and sardines(in water) are known for their beneficial properties. Additionally, vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, squash, sweet potato(in moderation), pumpkin, and zucchini are good for helping with joint inflammation. Here’s a
Consider putting your dog on a keto diet.
Dog Breeds Prone To Osteoarthritis
Any dog can develop this condition regardless of its breed but Larger dogs and Purebreds are at a higher risk.
- Old English Sheepdogs
- Border Collie
- Bull Mastiff
- German Shepherd
- German Pointer
- Golden Retriever
- Labrador Retriever
- Scottish Collie
- Springer Spaniel
- Saint Bernards
- Great Danes
Alternative Treatments to Osteoarthritis
Homeopathy – It works through the principle of like cures like.
This product is effective in Osteoarthritis, Arthritis, and Rheumatoid Arthritis.
It also strengthens the cartilage, ligaments, tendons, joints, and relieves inflammation.
More importantly, it works on all animals.
Homeoanimal has 450 remedies that cover a wide array of conditions.
Reiki – This is a form of energy healing where the practitioner transfers healing energy to a dog(or human) through human touch and is directed towards the Chakras or the energy centers of the body.
Dogs that experience Reiki often result in increased mobility, calmness, and display a renewed interest in play. Reiki is not limited in distance. Energy healing can be sent across the room or even to a different part of the world. Learn more here.
Acupuncture – This is an ancient form of healing in humans that also applies to animals and is one aspect of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM). Needles are inserted in very specific areas to stimulate the body to heal itself. Learn more here.
Laser Therapy – works thought the process called photobiostimulation. Lasers are pointed in areas that change the cellular chemistry by increasing production of cell fuel (adenosine triphosphate). It also increases circulation to the site and reduces inflammation and pain. Learn more here
How Can I Help My Dog With Arthritic Pain?
There are things you can do to further help your dog. The pain from this condition may discourage your dog from getting up from a lying position.
When your dog does get up, prevent him from slipping by putting some carpeting on the floor. It will also help cushion the impact on their joints.
Restrict access to sections of your home with slippery floors, such as ceramic tiles.
Low impact exercises may help like swimming.
Excess strain can be placed on your dog’s joints and muscles when they are attempting to get out of water. If your dog is not a natural water lover, restrict their access to water.
Swimming is a non-load-bearing exercise that is beneficial for dogs with Osteoarthritis.
If your dog is a swimmer, look for an entrance to and exit from the water which won’t cause unnecessary burden to their joints’.
Walking is a form of low impact exercise. Ideally, it should be 3 short walks daily lasting 10 minutes or less.
Exercise is necessary to strengthen muscles and to provide mental stimulation as well as to control body weight.
Slow down if you notice your dog falling behind. Pause mid-walk if necessary.
It’s better to have frequent short walks every day instead of taking very long walks but infrequently.
Avoid going out at the hottest part of the day. If it rains, dry out your dog because older dogs have less ability to keep themselves warm.
A warming bed may offer relief for your dog. Put a layer of bedding so your dog doesn’t lie directly on top. Also, always adjust to the lowest setting.
Try to cover your dog’s bed or crate only halfway with the heating pad so your dog can move over if he finds it too warm.
Lastly, NEVER give your dog human painkillers!
Please consult your veterinarian if your dog is suffering from Osteoarthritis.
All information in the article is for educational purposes only and is not meant to replace your veterinarian’s advice.