(DOGS/PET CARE) Arthritis can be extremely painful to experience and to watch. It’s heart-aching to watch your fur baby wobble around with unhealthy legs.

The main cause of arthritis is chronic inflammation. In simpler words, the immune system discards proteins that pose damage to the joints. The discarded proteins cause cells to secrete more toxic proteins, resulting in chronic inflammation.

It might appear that giving your dog anti-inflammation drugs will cure arthritis. But this is not as easy as it seems. Alternatively, research indicates anti-inflammatory drugs can do more harm than good.

Listed below are steps that can help cure arthritics. These tips may not work as quickly as medication, but they are beneficial in the long-term and have no harmful side effects.

Arthritis in dogs is very common and can be difficult to treat.

Patch up the leaky gut

Poor diet is a primary reason for joint disease. However, details surrounding a dog’s digestive system were not fully understood until recently.

The lining of a dog’s gut consists of tiny little holes that allow proteins and nutrients to enter the body and be consumed as fuel. When your dog has arthritis, these holes are stretched and are not able to prevent toxins and undigested bug particles from entering the body, which has a negative impact on the immune system.

Cause of gut damage

Some dogs eating Beneful have experienced Internal bleeding, diarrhea, seizures, and liver malfunction. Photo credit: ABC 7 Chicago
A healthy diet is extremely important for arthritic dogs. Photo credit: ABC 7 Chicago

Poor nutrition is also the main cause of a damaged gut. Processed grain-based foods containing wheat and soy as well as food preservatives and additives can be extremely harmful.  Consumption of sugar, lectin, GMOs and sterilized dairy can pose grave problems to the gut lining.

The gut lining can also be damaged by steroids, NSAIDs, antibiotics, probiotics, and flea treatments, which cause an imbalance in the healthy gut fluid. Aside from drugs, over-vaccination can also result in damage to the lining. Vaccines often contain foreign proteins as well as metals like aluminum, causing inflammation in the body and gut.

Cure

While there is no definitive cure for canine arthritis, it’s very important to keep your dog’s gut healthy so unwanted toxins will not enter the body and weaken the immune system.

To do so, one needs to improve their dog’s diet, eliminating processed foods and GMOs. What’s more, rather than prescribing medications, one should first opt for home remedies as they are typically safer, and avoid over-vaccinating their pet.

Regulate the fat consumption

Fats are an essential component of your dog’s diet that impact every single cell present in his/her body. The amount of fat consumed can be detrimental to a dog’s health.

The two main types of fat consumed by your dog are omega-6 or omega-3 fats. Both of these are equally important to maintain the balance of hormones and immunity. The omega-6 fat initiates the inflammation, whereas the omega-3 fat eliminates it. The two of these hormones work perfectly fine in balance unless disrupted by poor diet.

Most of the foods consumed today are high in omega-6 and low in omega-3. This results in chronic inflammation, which can eventually lead to severe arthritis. Grains and farmed animals are particularly high in omega-6.

To minimize inflammation, it’s vital that your dog consumes grass-eating animals rather than factory-fed or grain-fed animals. If this is beyond reach, then one can add omega-3 fats like fish to their diet.

Antioxidants are important

Canine arthritis is a particularly common occurrence in older pets.

The inflammation in the body forms free radicals like those caused by pollution. Free radicals damage the cells and can cause degenerative disease as well as premature aging.

Antioxidants are the molecules that prevent damage posed to the cell by free radicals. These have anti-aging properties and are an excellent prevention of cancer, heart disease, and other immune concerns. Some household food rich in antioxidants are turmeric, wild blueberries, oregano, cinnamon, and ginger.

Hopefully the tips mentioned above will help you prevent and/or treat arthritis in your little furry companions.

— Wendy Shore, exclusive to Global Animal

Wendy Shore is a parent of two amazing dogs. She is very enthusiastic about pet health and welfare in general. She regularly blogs at TotallyGoldens.com.

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