Pet owners have been warned of a common debilitating problem affecting pooches as temperatures drop across the country.
Australian pet owners have been warned of the dangers of freezing temperatures increasing arthritis-related problems in dogs.
Animal Welfare League Senior Veterinarian Karishma Dahia told NCA NewsWire she has seen a 20% increase in consultations for arthritis-related issues in Queensland dogs after the cold snap in Queensland. State.
“I would say we’ve seen a 20% increase in osteoarthritis consultations in middle-aged to older dogs, sort of seven years older in the winter,” she said.
“The colder weather seems, I suspect, to progress the worsening of the OA spine, so the dogs seem to get a little stiffer and are slower to get up.”
The vet said that although arthritis is common in all dogs, she mainly treats large dog breeds such as Labradors, German Shepherds and Staffies for this condition.
Bob Doneley, a professor at the University of Queensland’s School of Veterinary Sciences, told NCA NewsWire that arthritis is a degeneration of the joints that causes joint cartilage to erode.
“Most often it is an age-related problem, as the bone around the joint itself is affected and age is a factor in diet and veterinary care,” said he declared.
“All pets face the same kind of aging issues that humans do, including heart disease, kidney problems, cancer and arthritis.”
“I don’t think you can prevent arthritis, but I do think you can reduce the severity of it. And you can certainly reduce the effects on the animal’s quality of life.
Some common signs of arthritis in dogs include difficulty climbing stairs or jumping in the car, circling before sitting down, and even muscle spasms that cause the back legs to shake.
The warning follows a Victorian clinic reporting a 230 per cent rise in the number of arthritis patients in animals over the past few months as temperatures plummeted.
Although there are misconceptions that dogs in Queensland are better off than southern states, the vet said many homes in the Sunshine State were built to keep the heat out.
“If you look at houses in NSW, Victoria, they are built for the colder weather,” Ms Dahia said.
“I think a lot of people don’t have heating because it’s only cold for a few months in Queensland, whereas in the south it’s obviously cold all year round.”
The pet’s owner, Bianca de Wit, told NCA NewsWire that she wears her two dogs in “pajamas” at night and even has raincoats to wear in the windy weather.
“We use winter-looking fleece blankets and thick coats for morning walks to keep them warm, which seems to help,” she said.