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senior dog

Bozo the senior pup with stiffness and mobility troubles

Meet Bozo. Unlike his name may imply, Bozo is anything but clownish or silly. He is serious, kindhearted, and a very mellow dude. Bozo is a welsh terrier that has struggled with allergies his entire life. He is on a strict diet and supplement regimen to help with that, however, when he started to really struggle with limping and getting around the house, his mom was referred to us.

 

Upon first meeting Bozo one could tell he was just tired and uncomfortable. His joints were stiff and he was moving so slowly. Every step seemed to be labored and his energy levels were nonexistent. Bozo’s spine and joints were in definite need of some tender loving care, which is where we came in! It took about four adjustments, and Bozo would show slight improvement with each visit. After his fifth visit, however, Bozo turned the corner and was like his old self again.

 

This fifteen year old was not limping, his itching had decreased dramatically, and he was actually being very playful. He wanted to run a little bit and would saunter off and try to play with his brother, Freckles. There’s no doubt that Bozo is still a senior dog with mobility issues, however, for the time being his quality of life has improved drastically and we are excited that he is able to live out his senior years with more joy than he had previously!

Arthritis in dogs

Geriatric Dogs and Animal Chiropractic

I find myself writing this blog today because our practice has seen an uptick in geriatric dogs recently.  What is their biggest complaint?  Typically, the issue is rear end shaking and an inability to support their weight.  The good news is that we are getting great results with this population.  In fact, our patients frequently claim to see significant improvement within 24 hours.  Why is this and what are some other strategies we can use to help them through their twilight years?  Read on to find out.

What is a geriatric dog?Geriatric Dogs

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, a geriatric dog is any small breed 7 years and older or any large breed 6 years and older.  There are many issues that affect this population, but one big one is a decrease in mobility.  The body naturally breaks down over time.  However, if the joints of the spine or limbs are in poor alignment they will wear down faster.  Think of it like a car forced out of alignment.  The tires and other parts will wear unevenly and quickly.  A similar thing happens in the body.

Why do geriatric dogs benefit from animal chiropractic care?

Geriatric pets benefit from animal chiropractic because chiropractic restores normal function and alignment to a joint.  When a joint is out of alignment, it places uneven stress along it.  In addition, it initiates an inflammatory response.  Inflammation is known for contributing to joint degeneration.  Therefore, animal chiropractic is an important intervention because it keeps the joints of the body in normal alignment which helps prevent premature wear and inflammation.

What else can we do to help geriatric dogs?

In addition to animal chiropractic care, there are a number of things we can do to help our pets.  These include:

  • Controlling your pets weight – Overweight pets are subject to extra forces on their joints.
  • Keep exercising – You may need to modify their routine, but movement is important for joint health.
  • Supplementation – There are quite a few joint supplements on the market.  The goal is to give a high quality supplement that includes glucosamine and chondroitin.

These tips combined with chiropractic care will benefit your pet’s quality of life.

Unfortunately, arthritis and decreased mobility area conditions that will affect many geriatric pets.  However, there are ways to slow the progression.  This includes adding animal chiropractic care, weight control, exercise, and supplementation.  With these additions your pet will enjoy an improved quality of life during their twilight years.

 

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