Osteoarthritis

This is a common condition causing lameness in dogs.  It is caused by wear and tear in the joint.  Cartilage that lines the joints and acts as cushioning layer begins to wear away.  When this happens, bony structures in and around the joint begin to rub against each other causing the bone to thicken and to become mis-shapen.  This results in pain and discomfort for the dog.

 

It is a progressive condition that cannot be cured.  The onset of arthritis could be associated with a trauma or previous injury or it can be related to a primary orthopaedic condition such as hip dysplasia.

 

Multiple joints can be affected by the condition and you may notice some or all of the following:

 

  • Lameness or limping

  • Stiffness especially on rising

  • Yelping, crying or soreness when touched

  • Swelling and/or around the joint

  • Reluctance to exercise

  • Licking, chewing or nibbling the joint

 

How can massage help?

 

Without muscles, joints do not move.  If the muscles that cross or attach near the joint are tight this can affect the range of motion and flexibility.  Massage can help by:

 

  • Reducing swelling around the joint

  • Improving flexiblity and mobility

  • Removing muscle tension

  • Reducing muscle spasms

  • Relieving and controlling pain

 

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