It can be hard to know what your dog needs. We don’t speak their language and they don’t speak ours. So when it comes time to treat them for possible illnesses, we often miss the signs. Joint pain is something every dog parent would like to prevent from happening to their beloved pet. But, unfortunately, it’s a highly common ailment for canines. Many dog breeds are genetically prone to hip dysplasia or arthritis that can cause mild to severe joint pain. But since they can’t tell us they feel stiff or sore, how can we tell what is bothering them? Well, here are seven signs that your dog might need to start taking joint supplements. (1, 2, 3)
Does Your Dog Need Joint Supplements?
Before starting your dog on a joint supplement regime, it’s important to check whether or not they are a breed that commonly develops joint issues. Well-known breeds like German shepherds, labradors, mastiffs, and daschunds are all familiar with joint issues But that doesn’t mean your mixed-breed doesn’t also suffer from joint pain. There are also many other types of purebred dogs prone to these issues. If you’re unsure if joint issues are causing your dog’s discomfort, speak with your veterinarian for a professional evaluation. (2, 4)
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Seven Signs Your Dog May Need Supplements
- They are having trouble getting up and down
One of the first signs that a dog is struggling with the health of their joints is their inability to get up, sit, or lay down in easy, swift motions. It might appear that your dog has become more lethargic, but in reality, it’s possible pain is preventing your pet from being able to stand, sit, or lie down comfortably. They might choose to keep to their lying positions more throughout the day in order to avoid the discomfort or pain of standing. (2, 3)
- They are slow and stiff when they move
In their younger days, your dog would run around, jump, bark, and play. Now they tend to favor slow movements without any sudden change. Perhaps they used to run after the ball or enjoy tug-o-war, but now they seem altogether disinterested. Joint pain can cause discomfort in even the most leisurely doggy activities like their usual walk. Jumping, pulling, running, and playing can make that pain much worse. If your playful pooch has turned into a slow-moving stinker, he might be suffering from joint pain. (2, 3)
- They are having difficulty or unwillingness going up or down stairs
Just like getting up and down or routine play might be undesirable to your dog, so might going up or downstairs. They might be slow, have difficulty, or even try to avoid it altogether. (2, 3)
- They favor one leg
If your dog is favoring one leg over the other without any sort of injury, this could be an indication of joint cartilage damage. This is especially true if their pain appears to increase over time. Animals are resilient, so visible signs of pain should not be ignored. Rather, it is a good sign that a trip to the vet is necessary and some joint supplements might be beneficial. (2, 3)
- They are experiencing excessive panting
Keep in mind excessive panting can happen to your dog at any time. It can be a sign of many things and doesn’t always indicate a joint issue. Simple things like heat, dehydration, excitement, exercise, and more can cause panting in dogs. That being said, if panting is combined with the stiffness or hindered mobility mentioned above, it could be an additional sign that your dog is suffering from arthritis or hip dysplasia. That trip to the vet is probably in order. (2)
- They are sensitive to touch or petting around their joints
If your pet’s joints are sore, they might not like being touched, rubbed, or pet in those areas. If your dog is more sensitive to touch than they have been in the past, it could be because of joint pain. (2, 3)
- Their joints are swelling
Swollen joints are usually a clear indication that a dog requires medical intervention in the form of joint supplements in order to regain their health. Many supplements provide a balanced amount of minerals, including glucosamine, to help support joint health. These minerals also serve as anti-inflammatory agents to ease the pain, reduce swelling, and restore flexibility and mobility. (1, 2, 3)
Though our canine companions can’t communicate pain verbally, these non-verbal cues are a good place to start in diagnosing a problem. If your dog is displaying overt signs of joint pain, talk to your vet about TruDog’s FREE ME Joint and Flexibility Daily Supplement Powder to get your furry buddy back in tip-top shape.