Today I want to write about a subject that is very important to me. Joint health for your dog and how essential it is to start taking care of them early on.
We adopted Jake when he was about 3. Shortly after, we noticed that he could not walk or run great distances. He literally would sit down halfway through a block walk. The last time he did that I had to carry him the rest of the way home. We took him to the vet the next day. The doctor did a complete exam including x-rays. They showed a fractured disc right above his tail. The doctor opted for conservative treatment, basically keeping Jake from jumping or climbing stairs for 12 months in the hopes that the discs would fuse naturally. Thank goodness they did and he, along with his Deramaxx, had many great years.
The one thing we did not realize, was the effect that damaged disc would do to the rest of his body. Had we known, we would have done everything we could to protect him. When he was hit (by car or person, we do not know) the damage caused his alignment to be off kilter. We thought it was funny how his body moved sideways when he walked - no idea what it all meant.
That alignment issue took its toll after many years and his front legs bore the brunt of it all. After 8 years he could no longer stand, the cartilage in his shoulders was gone, his legs literally swiveled in the sockets. We jumped right in and started him on swim therapy, Cosequin, fish oil, you name it. Had we begin earlier, maybe we could have bought him more time. I just wish we knew what we know now back then.
Now we have Casey and even though she is only about a year and a half old and a small dog, we are going to give her every chance we can for a long, healthy, pain-free life. Good quality food with Omega 3's, Cosequin daily, sardines (the wonder food) and lots of exercise and love!