One of the most common conditions that affect our senior dogs and cats is osteoarthritis (degenerative joint disease). Osteoarthritis is a disease that may affect any joint but is commonly found in a pet’s hip, elbow, shoulder, knee, wrist, or ankle joint.
It occurs when cartilage in the joint becomes damaged, either due to trauma or from normal wear and tear in athletic or obese animals. When the cartilage is damaged, its ability to act as a shock absorber for the joint is reduced, resulting in inflammation of the joint and subsequent damage to underlying bone.
Signs of arthritis include:
- Stiffness (especially after rising from long periods of rest)
- Difficulty climbing stairs, jumping in/out of the car, bed, or sofa
- Licking the fur or skin over the affected joint
- Pain when touched or manipulated
- Reluctance to take walks of usual lengths
Signs of osteoarthritis will get worse every day, so it is important to see your veterinarian as soon as possible if your pet is showing any of the symptoms listed above.
At Manchaca Road Animal Hospital we use Adequan as a series of injections administered to aide in the treatment of canine osteoarthritis. Unlike other drugs, Adequan is a treatment that has been proven to actually fight the disease of arthritis, not just reduce its symptoms.
Adequan acts as a chondroprotective agent (cartilage-protecting agent) that will reduce the severity of osteoarthritis in four ways:
- Blocking the formation of damaging enzymes within the joint
- Relieving inflammation in the joint that causes pain
- Improving the production of synovial joint fluid to lubricate the joints
- Inhibiting further cartilage damage
In treating arthritis, injections of Adequan are given twice a week for 4 weeks followed by a maintenance period of one injection per month. With Adequan, you’ll typically start to see relief in your pet’s condition within the initial 4 week period as your pet resumes normal activities and usual patterns of play. Adequan has an excellent safety profile and can be used to treat all breeds of dogs. It has also been used extensively in cats with osteoarthritis, although the product does not have a label approved for feline use. For more information please visit the Adequan website: http://www.adequancanine.us