How to Manage Oestoarhritis in Dogs?

You undoubtedly feel helpless as a pet parent when you watch your dog writhing in pain and unable to move. You want to do everything to shoo away its joint inflammation problem. You want it to be its usual fun and playful self again. Sadly, there’s no cure for osteoarthritis.

Dogs With Osteoarthritis Endure Unending Suffering

The progressive joint condition osteoarthritis hits all dogs, especially seniors. A quarter of the canine population has osteoarthritis. It causes joint discomfort and stiffness. The symptoms of osteoarthritis include limping, stiffness after resting, difficulty in movement, and lack of mobility.

Age-related joint degeneration is the most likely source of osteoarthritis in dogs. Other variables, such as obesity or excessive physical activity, might increase the likelihood of getting this illness. In addition to causing pain, osteoarthritis makes it difficult for dogs with this condition to move around normally. They tend to be less active and jump around less often than healthy dogs.

The good news is that even if you can’t cure the ailment, you can treat the symptoms and slow its progression. Here are a few suggestions to help your dog cope with this condition:

Administer Rimadyl

An NSAID, Rimadyl, effectively treats moderate to severe pain and inflammation in dogs. In addition to easing your dog’s physical discomfort, Rimadyl helps improve its quality of life. It reduces post-surgery pain and swelling and improves mobility. 

Suppose your dog has an injury. In that case, Rimadyl may help it regain muscle mass and improve emotional well-being by relieving anxiety-related conditions such as excessive barking/howling because of pain. 

Rimadyl is available in tablet form for dogs only. Generally, there are three different dosages available: 

Depending on the severity of the ailment, which strength to give will be established. It is also vital to highlight that Rimadyl should not be given to animals with pre-existing liver or renal disorders, as well as those under the age of 6 months. Because this is a prescription medication, you will be administering it under your pet’s veterinarian’s supervision.

Consider Regenerative Treatments

With 83% of pet owners witnessing improved lameness in their dogs due to regenerative treatments, these are promising options for dogs with osteoarthritis. Regenerative therapies have been shown to help manage dogs’ pain, inflammation, and mobility issues. Some examples of regenerative treatments include stem cell therapy (SCIT), platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, and prolotherapy injections.

SCIT employs the patient’s stem cells to help rebuild injured tissue. This procedure is typically outpatient at your veterinarian’s office under general anesthesia or sedation. The stem cells can come from three different sources: fat tissue aspirate (FDA), bone marrow aspirate (FBM), and adipose-derived adult progenitor cells (ADAPs). FDA is the most commonly used source because it has fewer risks than FBM or ADAPs but still provides similar benefits.

PRP uses platelets that have been separated from blood taken from your dog to stimulate healing in injured joints. And Prolotherapy involves an injection of dextrose into tender areas of your dog’s joints for pain relief.

Try Acupuncture

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese therapeutic practice. It entails inserting extremely fine needles into particular places on your dog’s body. The insertion stimulates energy flow or blocks pain. 

For treating osteoarthritis in dogs, acupuncture is widely applied as a potential substitute for standard Western therapy. It can be used with additional measures, including surgery and dieting. Although acupuncture hasn’t been proven to cure osteoarthritis, it can help manage the symptoms of this condition while you wait for another more permanent solution.

If your dog has already undergone surgery, traditional Western medicine recommends giving him a few weeks of rest before beginning any physical therapy exercises or acupuncture sessions. This will give him time to recover without further aggravating his painful joints or causing other injuries.

Opt For Photo-Bio Modulation

Photo-bio modulation is a treatment that uses light and sound to treat pain. It has been shown to reduce inflammation and improve mobility in dogs with osteoarthritis, making it a promising approach for you to manage your dog’s inflammatory pain.

The photo-bio modulation therapy works by using red light. The red light activates mitochondria and boosts ATP production. In contrast, infrared light promotes blood circulation, improves muscle relaxation, and reduces swelling and stiffness in the joints, helping them move more freely again.

Feed Anti-Inflammatory Diet

Understanding that a dog’s diet can actively reduce inflammation and pain is essential. Feeding your dog an anti-inflammatory diet will help reduce symptoms of osteoarthritis while also helping to prevent further damage.

You must refuse to give your dog high-fat meals. Dogs have a more challenging time digesting fatty meals. Avoid offering your dog processed meat products or human goodies like candies. This helps prevent digestive issues for dogs which could lead to more severe health problems over time. 

Also, with 70% of dogs with overweight issues, you would want to prevent obesity in your dogs. Obesity puts more strain on their joints which may worsen the pain. 

Instead, try adding more fish, high-fiber vegetables, and anti-oxidant fruits to their diets. These foods provide valuable omega-3 fatty acids, essential nutrients that have been shown to reduce inflammatory responses throughout the body.

Invest in Orthopedic Dog Beds

Orthopedic dog beds are a blessing for your pet, who will thank you for it. These beds relieve joint pressure and support your dog’s hips and spine. They are built of exceptional foam padding cushions, which soothe and support their joints.

If you have an orthopedic bed for your dog, he will likely find sleeping on it much more comfortable. These unique beds can also help prevent arthritis by redistributing weight evenly throughout the body instead of concentrating it all at one point.

Give Massage

Giving your dog a massage is a great way to help ease joint pains and stiffness. Massage can also improve circulation, reduce inflammation, increase the range of motion and stimulate the production of synovial fluid, the lubricant in your pet’s joints.

You should start by ensuring that your dog is comfortable with being touched before you begin massaging them. If your pet doesn’t enjoy it, try again later when feeling more relaxed. You can do this by giving treats throughout the massage session so they associate the experience with something positive. 


The bottom line is that osteoarthritis is a severe health issue for dogs. It can be painful for them, and you should take steps to manage it as best you can. If your dog has been diagnosed with OA, talk to your vet about options to treat his symptoms with medication or surgery.

In some cases, there may also be lifestyle changes like exercise regimens or dietary supplements that help ease the pain of arthritis in dogs. Start implementing the measures and see how your dog becomes fun and happy again.