When your pet has an orthopedic problem, it impacts their quality of life. A considerable part of your pet’s lifestyle is their ability to be active or mobile, and orthopedic issues limit their movements. We understand how painful these conditions can be and want to provide some relief for your loyal companion. At our hospital, we have radiology equipment to get a clear image of your pet’s musculoskeletal system so we can diagnose and treat them.
What are common orthopedic issues in pets?
While dogs and cats may suffer from the same orthopedic problems, some species are more prone to specific issues. Your pet’s size, age and breed play a significant role in the orthopedic issues they may have.
Cats are more prone to the following conditions:
- Hip dysplasia – A common genetic condition in purebred cats like Siamese and Main Coon cats. These cats usually have normal hips at birth, but they can develop the condition over time.
- Fractures – Cats often have fractures in their elbows, knees, wrists, shoulder and ankles. Fractures are usually treated with surgery where pins, screws and wires are used to stabilize the joint and limb.
- Osteoarthritis – This wear and tear disease is very common in older cats. The cartilage separating their bones begins to wear down with age causing pain and inflammation at their joints.
Dogs with a more active lifestyle are often more likely to develop an orthopedic problem. On the other hand, many breeds of dogs are genetically predisposed to musculoskeletal issues. The most common orthopedic problems are:
- Hip dysplasia – Large breed dogs like German Shepherds, Labradors and Golden Retrievers usually have this problem.
- Torn cruciate ligaments – This is a condition dogs develop from running or chasing something, which causes their ligaments to tear.
- Luxating Patella – The patella is the kneecap, and sometimes it slips out or moves resulting in pain.
- Disc problems – Dogs can have neck or lower back disc problems. Large breeds suffer from lower back problems, and smaller canines like Dachshunds, Poodles, or Cocker Spaniels have neck disc disease.
What are the signs of an orthopedic problem?
Your pet’s first instinct is to hide any sign of weakness, so you may not see the signs at first. With time you’ll notice your pet wanting to avoid certain activities that force them to move. Look out for the following:
- Weight loss
- Unwillingness to do activities they usually love
- Limping or stiffness
- Change in attitude
- Resentment to being handled
If you see these signs in your pet, contact us immediately to get them diagnosed and treated. Call us at 519-948-7727 to book an appointment.
How are orthopedic issues treated?
Our team will diagnose your pet’s condition and decide what treatment will be the most effective for your pet. We may treat orthopedic problems with surgery, weight management, supplements or pain medication.