Your precious little one is suffering from lameness or lacks the ability to use one or more limbs. Dog’s lameness can not only decrease quality of life, but it can also both lead to and be caused by pain. How do you treat your dog’s lameness?
What is Causing the Problem?
Before you purchase medications or invest in expensive treatments, you want to know what caused your dog’s lameness in the first place. This may seem like common sense at first, but many causes can be obscure, some impossible to diagnose without testing.
If your dog tore a tendon, pulled a ligament or fractured a bone, for example, store-bought joint supplements or those herbs your friend told you about won’t do anything to treat either the pain or injury. At the same time, these things are almost always impossible for dog owners to recognize without consulting a veterinarian.
Controlled pain medications can’t be legally purchased without consulting a doctor of veterinary medicine, and ‘self-treating’ an injured animal is never recommended.
Questions to Ask:
- Why is my dog lame, or what exactly is causing this?
- Do I need to see a veterinarian?
- Would pain medication help my dog, or only mask the real problem?
- Does my dog have weight control or nutritional issues?
- Will it really help at all if I give my dog a store-bought remedy?
- Can activity promote further injury?
Immobilize the Limb
Now your pet’s veterinarian has performed an examination, possibly conducted thorough testing. Now when the cause of your dog’s lameness has been determined, a treatment plan can be set into motion.
There is an acronym for humans when coping with mild limb injuries-
R.I.C.E. Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation is almost universal when dealing with strains, sprains or the swelling they cause.
Unfortunately, this is about impossible for a quadruped that walks on all four limbs, tends to chew at and bandage that doesn’t feel natural and will instinctually lick wounds with non-stop persistence.
Immobilizing or wrapping the limb first thing your veterinarian will likely do, for almost any limb injury that doesn’t require surgery. They may prescribe pain medication you can’t purchase over the counter, and will certainly discuss a follow-up treatment/care plan with you.
How do you prevent an animal that evolved, over hundreds of thousands of years (from early wolves, and possibly even prior), the solid instinct to lick any wounds? Your answer is a fantastically simple device called the Elizabethan collar, better known as a dog cone! Your pet probably won’t enjoy this at first, and it may pose difficulties with movement, but will allow wounds the time they need to heal.
Constant licking will prevent scabs from forming, and your pet is likely going to tear at any stitches in place while destroying any bandaging. There is also the problem of constant bacteria penetration being introduced.
Weight Control for Dog Lameness
Even if your dog’s lameness isn’t caused by degenerating joints or arthritis, excess weight that shouldn’t be there means excess weight your injured pet must support, and excess weight the injured limb has been supporting. Not only can un-needed weight or obesity contribute toward injuries, but it can also be that much more painful on your dog’s joints.
Unlike humans, a dog’s nails will contact the ground every time he runs. Extremely long nails can harm your pet’s equilibrium, increase the chance of injury, and possibly even lead to infection.
Over-the-Counter Pain Relief
NSAIDs (Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs)
Medications designed for human use shouldn’t be given to dogs without the express consent of your veterinarian. These could have unforeseen reactions, and Tylenol, in particular, has been known to cause liver damage.
Though many sources may claim Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is also just as helpful for pets as humans, you shouldn’t give Tylenol and avoid any medications that contain it. In fact, no treatment should be given without the advice of a veterinarian. You’ll also need to consider your pet’s weight.
NSAIDs Specifically Designed for Dogs include names like carprofen, etodolac, and meloxicam. Your veterinarian will recommend these, as opposed to medications designed for human use.
CBD for Dogs
Cannabidiol, a natural remedy derived from the hemp plant, has exploded in popularity during recent years! Pet owners and humans users alike swear by this ‘wonder treatment’, using it for nearly any ailment under the sun.
This may help your dog’s pain, inflammation, healing and provide other benefits. It is a fantastic course of action to accompany other, traditional treatments. Your veterinarian will without a doubt be able to tell you all about it!
However, this shouldn’t be your only treatment and shouldn’t be solely relied on for healing.
There is no current, solid medical or scientific proof CBD will do anything at all for your dog’s lameness or pain.
It’s important you use CBD as a supplement with proven treatments prescribed by a veterinarian.
Power of Canine Stem Cell Therapy
The ultimate treatment that can deal with all of these things is Canine Stem Cell Therapy. Let’s break it down.
So what are stem cells? They are cells that naturally occur in your and your dog’s body. Their assignment is to maintain a stable state of the tissue and protect our organisms. By repairing damaged cartilage, bone tissue, cells and preventing further cell deterioration. Also, by decreasing inflammation. All these things are attributable to the above-mentioned causes of lameness.
Sometimes cells in specific places need help from additional stem cells. Especially in older dogs. This is when Stem Cell Therapy comes in. Within the simple procedure, a veterinarian injects cells into the injured place. Afterward, cells move deep down to the damaged cartilage or tissue and regenerate them as well as decrease inflammation. Thereby, Stem Cell Therapy helps to prevent pain and lameness that came along.
Stem Cell Therapy tends to show faster, more effective and long-lasting results than other treatments. However, it is recommended to additionally use other treatments to gain better results.
In Conclusion: Remain Calm and Maintain Cheer!
Our dogs judge a situation, determining how to respond to it, based largely on our reactions. That being said, dogs are often better at reading human body language than the humans themselves! It’s also important to remember not to apply human emotions to dogs.
If you become emotional or even hysterical, your dog is going to think something is very wrong (especially if this is unusual behavior). Unusual coddling won’t help a dog feel better like it would help a child, but rather make the problem/injury seem more severe in their eyes.
If your dog is suffering from lameness due to a broken leg, arthritis, hip hip dysplasia or other problems the best thing you can do for him/her is to casually act like nothing is wrong while you immediately tend to solve the situation.