Like humans, dogs experience worsened arthritis symptoms during cold weather.
Luckily, there are some things you can do to help your dog get through it:
Signs The Cold Is Affecting Your Dog’s Arthritis
During cold months, your dog isn’t able to move his/her joints around as much as in the warm months. This means that the joints will stiffen and the symptoms will worsen. This is how you can tell it is happening:
- Your dog is limping or hopping
- There’s a noticeable decrease in playfulness
- Your dog doesn’t want to go up or down the stairs
- Your dog gets up slowly from sitting or lying down
What You Can Do To Help
When you notice the time is becoming chilly, or it’s winding down to the cooler months, here are some measures you can take:
Watch your dog’s weight
It isn’t unusual for dogs to gain a few extra pounds when it gets cold because they’re inside more, but this can cause weight gain which puts more pressure on the joints. Ask your vet about how you can adjust your dog’s caloric intake, and encourage your dog to be active by going on walks.
Exercise helps to reduce the symptoms of arthritis and can help to strengthen the joints. If the snow is stopping you, try indoor obstacle courses, and games like puzzles to keep your dog moving.
Supplements containing glucosamine, MSM (methylsulfonylmethane} and chondroitin help to support healthy bones and joints. Muscle supplements containing fortetropin also help fragile dogs build muscle to support their weak joints. Before using supplements, please consult your vet first. We don’t recommend that you use supplements on your dog without getting approval from the vet!