MIAMI, Oct. 3, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Arthritis is one of the most commonly seen ailments in middle-aged and senior pets. Arthritis affects the joints of dogs and cats, making it painful for animals to walk, sit, and even climb stairs. To help determine if a pet has arthritis, petMD.com has pulled together the following list of seven signs of arthritis in dogs and cats.
- Limping: Dogs and cats that suffer from arthritis are often seen limping or favoring a particular leg. Sometimes, the limping may be worse when a pet first rises from a sitting or laying position and then seems to improve as the dog or cat moves around and "warms up" the affected joint.
- Hunching: Arthritis can also affect the spine of a dog or cat. When this occurs, the pet often suffers from a sore neck, has a "hunched" posture, and/or presents lameness in one or both of the back legs.
- Early Onset of Aging: Pain caused by arthritis can prevent pets from doing things they were previously able to do. Usually confused with signs of aging, a dog that is unable to walk up the stairs or a cat that refuses to jump from a perch may be suffering from arthritis.
- Fatigue: Pets suffering from arthritis tend to tire more easily than those who do not. For dogs, this can mean that the duration of walks becomes shorter; while cats with arthritis may reduce their typical level of activity and spend more time sleeping.
- Irritability: Pain caused by arthritis may make your cat or dog irritable. They may snap or bite when approached or handled, especially if handling them a certain way increases their pain.
- Thinning Legs: Arthritis can cause muscle atrophy in dogs and cats. Muscle tissue in the legs of animals can begin to die off if it is inactive or unused, causing a cat or dog's leg to appear thinner than normal.
- Inflamed Skin and Hair Loss: Arthritic pets may lick, bite or chew the parts of the body that are in pain. This behavior could result in inflamed skin or hair loss over the affected arthritic area.
Though arthritis cannot be cured, there are various remedies and procedures that can help ease the pain for your pet. Consult your veterinarian for advice if you believe your dog or cat is suffering from arthritis.
Media Contact: Natalie Rusinko, 610-276-1597, email@example.com
petMD.com is the leading online resource focused solely on the health and well-being of pets. The site maintains the world's largest pet health library, written and approved by a network of trusted veterinarians. petMD was founded to inspire pet owners to provide an ever-increasing quality of life for their pets and to connect pet owners with pet experts and other animal lovers. petMD is a subsidiary of the Pet360 family of brands, which also includes www.Pet360.com – a highly personalized & engaged community dedicated to simplifying and enhancing pet parenting, www.PetFoodDirect.com – the most complete pet food and supply retailer online, and www.NationalPetPharmacy.com – a fully certified, full-service pet pharmacy delivering pet meds, vitamins and comprehensive pet health and wellness products.
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