Joint health is an important element of your dog’s health. When their joint health suffers, so does their quality of life.
With an average of 319 bones in the dog skeleton (allowing for variations between breeds), the potential for joint issues in dogs is manifold.
What do you need to look for?
The following breeds are known to be predisposed to arthritis and other joint issues:
- Labrador Retrievers
- Old English Sheep Dogs
Also take care with giant breeds such as Great Danes, Saint Bernard’s and Bernese Mountain Dogs and canines that are part of the chondrodystrophoid group (meaning dogs with short legs), such as Dachshunds, Bulldogs and Basset Hounds.
10-12 years of age for a small dog, like a Toy Poodle or Terrier
Medium-sized breeds at 8 years
Giant breeds at 5-6 years of age
As a rule of thumb, most vets consider a dog aged 7-8 years upwards to be a senior.
Less interest in play or walks
Difficulty in, or reluctance to, get up
Flinch at your touch (around their joints)
Irritability or change in their temperament
Licking, biting or chewing affected joints