Alternative medicine options for relief of arthritis pain in dogs
By T. J. Dunn, Jr., DVM. Almost every six months a new medication becomes available to veterinarians that helps keep arthritic dogs more mobile and pain free.
Never give your pet any medication or supplement without first consulting a licensed veterinary professional. Although many websites and pet homeopaths allege that certain “herbal pain remedies” are safer or more reliable, there is no scientific data to back up these claims. A found glucosamine/chondroitin supplements can relieve pain related to osteoarthritis in dogs, but are still skeptical, saying it has “some value, little risk.”
Knee dysplasia: Some dogs, especially small toy breeds, will have malformed knee joints. As with hip and elbow dysplasia, this is an inherited conformational defect that causes arthritis. Some of these dogs will also have knee caps that pop in and out of position; the medical term for this is “luxating patella.” A dog suffering from this will limp until the knee cap returns to the correct position. Surgery is often needed to correct knee dysplasia.
What types of pain medications for dogs with arthritis are out there
Adequan for Dogs - Arthritis Pain Medication - 1800PetMeds
Arthritis dog medicine is widely prescribed, as arthritis is one of the most common health problems dogs' face. When aspirin and nutritional supplements such asglucosamine aren't working anymore, it may be time to consider a prescription arthritis dog medicine. Carprofen (Rimadyl Rx) is the best of the approved arthritic medications based on our clinical experience. When it doesn't control pain well enough we usually add a narcotic because there isn't much interaction between the medications and the additional pain relief afforded by the narcotics can be beneficial. We usually use hydrocodone or codeine in one of the combinations (like Vicodin Rx). We have used sustained relief morphine in a few patients and it helps a lot but we try to keep this as a short term treatment or to help patients whose owners simply will not consider euthanasia and there is significant suffering (which doesn't sound like your situation). Sometimes Adequan (Rx) injections work better than oral glucosamine products but not enough better that we rush to try this frequently. Still, it is an option. Corticosteroids work really well to control the inflammation (and therefore the pain) associated with degenerative joint disease. We use these when a pet is in good shape otherwise but the owners are considering euthanasia due to pain or poor mobility. At that point, the side effects become much less of a concern, since they are always less severe than the euthanasia option. Sometimes a dog will have a year or 18 months of comparative comfort with very few side effects after we start using prednisone or one of the other corticosteroids. However, side effects will eventually occur and so it is important not to start these medications too soon. I know that there are veterinarians using Celebrex (Rx) for arthritis in dogs. Anecdotally it is reported to work well. I have not seen any sort of scientifically established dosage, though. I hate to use medications without a pretty firm idea of the effects and dosing information, so I have not attempted to use this medication. I have heard (but again no firm data) that Vioxx (Rx) is harmful to some dogs, so it isn't used at the present time as far as I know. Stuff like regular moderate exercise, weight control, warmth when the joints are sore, icing when acutely inflamed and similar things that help people will help dogs. It is hard to overstate the importance of weight control. In at least one study in dogs weight control was more beneficial than any of the medications used in controlling disability and pain associated with degenerative joint disease. I hope that this help some.