Archive for May, 2012

Causes Of Mobility Problems In Dogs

It’s estimated that about one dog out of five has some mobility issues at some time in their life.  These problems often occur as the dog ages when arthritis can start to affect a dog’s joints and slow them down.  However, there are some other causes of mobility problems in dogs.

 

Hip dysplasia

One frequent cause of mobility problems in dogs is hip dysplasia.  Hip dysplasia occurs when there is wear and tear between the ball and socket of the hip joint.  This can be due to complex reasons:  the shape of the joint, injury, and obesity can all be contributing factors.  Some dogs may look like they are dysplastic when their hips are x-rayed but they never have any mobility issues.  Other dogs may look like they have excellent hip conformation on x-rays but they can develop joint problems or arthritis later in life.  In general, hip dysplasia tends to affect large breed dogs much more often than smaller dogs.  If you have a breed that is prone to hip dysplasia, it is a good idea to have your dog’s hips x-rayed when he is two years old to have them rated, especially if you are considering breeding your dog.

 

Degenerative myelopathy

Canine degenerative myelopathy is a disease that occurs in older dogs of about 43 breeds.  It is chronic and it progresses, affecting the spinal cord.  Age of onset is usually between seven and 14 years old.  Symptoms include the loss of coordination in the dog’s rear legs.  The disease may look like arthritis at first but the dog usually drags one or both of his back paws and there is a characteristic way of turning the back toes under when the dog stands.  Breeds affected include German Shepherd Dogs, Welsh Corgis (Pembroke and Cardigan), Boxers, and Rhodesian Ridgebacks, among others.  There is a DNA test to find out if a dog carries the gene for DM.  There is no cure for DM at this time though keeping your dog active is thought to help him maintain his muscle coordination longer.

 

Senior dogs

Senior dogs can have mobility problems due to arthritis.  The arthritis can be related to hip dysplasia, or not.  It is not uncommon even for dogs who don’t have hip dysplasia to have some degree of arthritis in their joints as they age.  There are many good products to help dogs with arthritis.  People often report good results with glucosamin, chondroitin, green-lipped mussels, shark cartilage, MSM, and other natural products that provide joint lubrication.  Some products also help re-build cartilage in the joints which has been worn away.

 

There are also some good products for mild pain associated with arthritis and joint problems.  Of course, if your dog is experiencing more than mild discomfort, you should see your veterinarian.  He or she can prescribe an appropriate pain reliever for your dog.

 

Conclusion

If your dog does have mobility problems, whether they are due to hip dysplasia, arthritis, or for some other reason, there are many good ways to help him.  Boots can provide traction for your dog when he walks.  A harness can help you support your dog.  There are even dog wheelchairs.  Mobility problems don’t mean that your dog’s quality of life has to diminish

 

Article By: Nancy Cope, Owner of the online dog boutique Pampered-Dog-Gifts.com where you can find a wide variety of products for your pooch.

Did you know chemical flea ointments and flea collars are actually harmful for you and your pet? Although these ointments and collars can eliminate fleas easily, the side effects are disastrous. Not only can they harm your pooch’s long-term health, they can also prove to be fatal. Therefore, you need something that can get rid of the fleas and be safe too. You may explore some discount dog supplies or try out some natural solutions to this problem, before trying anything else.

 

Here are 2 natural ways to take care of your canine’s flea problems:

 

  1. 1.      Make A Flea Spray At Home

 

Prevention is better than cure, and that is what homemade flea sprays aim to achieve. Remember that these are not effective in combatting flea or flea eggs once they have set in, these products are usually used to prevent the occurrence of fleas in the first place. As the problem of fleasstarts during the spring season, applying this spray before spring will prevent fleas.

 

Ingredients:

 

  1. a.      6 lemons
  2. b.      50 drops of Lavender essential oil
  3. c.       3 cups of water

 

Preparation:

 

  1. a.      Add thin and round slices of the lemons,with their skin intact,to a pot of boiling water. Remove the pot from the fire and then let the lemons sit in the pot for the night.

 

  1. b.      Next morning, take the liquid into a spray bottle and add Lavender essential oil to it.

 

Application:

 

  1. a.      Remember to spray this homemade flea spray on your dog whenever he is going outside or after a bath. Fleas are present amidst the nature and there is a high chance your dog will pick up a few clusters of flea eggs while rolling in the mud, running on the grass and during other similar activities.

 

  1. Are you a strong believer of flea collars? If yes, you can have a non-chemical (and non-harmful) flea collar for your dog using this flea spray. Soak the normal collar in this liquid to make your own natural and healthy flea collar.

 

  1. Remember that your dog is susceptible to picking up flea eggs while he is indoors, as these eggs can also be found in rugs and furniture. Spray the flea elimination solution on these furnishings in order to keep them free from flea. Also, consider spraying the surroundings of your house with this spray in order to make the whole household a flea free zone!

 

  1. 2.      A Balanced Diet

 

Remember that the need for healthy food and a balanced diet is same in dogs as it is in humans. Most of your canine’s diseases and flea problems can be taken care of by ensuring he is eating all the right things. This is due to the fact that a right diet can take care of the toxins that your canine comes in contact with. This will ensure his long term health.

 

Include flaxseed oil, probiotics and digestive enzymes to your dog’s diet. Including sporadic amounts of garlic and apple cider vinegar in his food (remember, that garlic can be toxic to dogs if consumed in profuse amounts) will also be helpful.

 

The right diet and the right homemade flea spray will take care of your dog’s flea problems without having to use harmful and expensive chemical products.

 

 

Eliza Lyttle is a pet lover and is the owner of two labradors. In her free time, Lyttle loves making womens halloween costumes 2012 and even makes costumes for her dogs every halloween.