As your pet ages, they likely will experience stiff, achy joints caused by osteoarthritis. Fortunately, you have many options to help keep your senior pet active and mobile throughout their golden years. Give the following methods a try.
#1: Add traction to slick surfaces
Your polished hardwood floor’s beauty is lost on your senior pet as they slip and slide across the slick surface. Provide traction by putting carpet runners or yoga mats down to create pathways for your pet to move around your house.
#2: Position ramps or stairs next to furniture
Jumping on or off furniture puts a great deal of stress on sore joints, so make it easy for your pet to climb up to their favorite resting spot with stairs or ramps. Ensure these aids are sturdy and stable to prevent your pet from falling.
#3: Apply traction aids to paws
To help your four-legged friend gain traction on slippery surfaces, apply traction aids to their paws and nails. Toe grips can help dogs grab onto slick floors better, while a specialized product can coat your pet’s paw pads to provide traction. You also can outfit your pet in non-slip booties.
#4: Use a harness or sling
Large dogs may struggle to get their hind legs under them when first rising, but you may find it difficult or awkward to help pick them up. Prevent potential pain and flailing by using a specially designed harness or sling to help support your dog’s hind end as they get their paws under them.
#5: Elevate your pet’s food and water dishes
Many older pets develop osteoarthritis in their elbows, making it painful to crouch down to reach their food or water. Help your pet out by raising their food and water bowls to a comfortable level to prevent needless bending.
Senior pets suffering from osteoarthritis or other musculoskeletal issues can benefit from joint and mobility supplements, in addition to anti-inflammatories and pain medications. See if your pet would benefit from supplements or medications by scheduling an appointment with your primary veterinarian.