How do you know if your dog has arthritis?


Obviously the vet, but I’m wondering if you can tell on your own. My dog is a lab and his movement has gotten very stiff. He’s started hopping down the stairs instead of running–it’s a cross of being funny and sad. He’s 10+ years old, and he’s gotten awfully lazy. It really is a chore trying to get him to do things with me.
Sorry, he’s a lab/German Shepherd mix.

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    10 Responses to “How do you know if your dog has arthritis?”

    1. Banana Bread says:

      My dog was limping and wasn’t as active. Go to the vet b/c they can prescribe meds to give to your dog that make your dog go back to normal.

    2. Ritchellei says:

      Arthritis in pets is most often the result of developmental or degenerative diseases or after an injury to a joint. Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, is a progressive condition due to damage to cartilage. This leads to pain, swelling and inflammation in one or several joints. The end-result is a decreased range of motion, reduced mobility and lameness. Arthritis can affect any joint, most commonly hips, knees and elbows.

      Check these links for more information.

    3. Barefoottrimmer says:

      Everything you describe sounds like arthritic symptoms. Arthritis is degenerative in nature and every living creature will have some level of it dependent upon their length of life. Your dog is getting older and while only x-rays can determine the amount of arthritis he has, it is a pretty safe bet he is probably advancing at this point. Cold weather and temperature is more difficult for arthritic dogs, they have difficulty getting up and down, general mobility is slower and more difficult and can be painful. There are some great natural supplements for arthritis in dogs (Cetyl- M is great). I’m not too impressed with things like MSM and condroitins and glucosamines, the traditional stuff. Regular walks would be good for your dog if he has OA, but I would not ask him to put too much stress on his old bones if he doesn’t really feel like it. Until you get a definative diagnosis, better be safe than sorry. An injury could be impossible for him to heal at this stage. Best of luck to you and your pup.

    4. babyhedred says:

      Someimes hip dysplasia and arthritus can exhibit the same symptoms. Only a vet can tell you for sure. But some signs include having a harder time getting up, back legs seem like their stiff, harder time negotiating stairs, and even bending down to eat can be painful. Take him to the vet for some x-rays and let him diagnose your guy.

    5. Bonzie12 says:

      The hopping is one indication, as well as having more difficulty in going up and down stairs, getting into the car, getting up when he is laying down for awhile, pacing around and finding it difficult to find a position to lay comfortably, are all indications that he may have arthritis. This can be a very painful condition for your dog, and taking him to the vet for some pain medication to help control the pain should be a priority. Swimming is a good exercise for this condition, as it is easier on the joints.

    6. Caitlin C says:

      Because of his age and the breed of dog he is, it is very likely that he has arthritis, take him to the vet and have him checked out, there is medication the vet can give you that will work wonders for him…like rimadyl, my dog takes it…hope this info helps

    7. Marcie says:


    8. bean41289 says:

      Well that’s the signs of arthritis! lol. I would recommend getting Arthisooth- Gold. It is Glucosamine and Chondroitin. It helps the joints. I would strongly recommend the Dogswell Happy Hip food. That too has the Glucosamine and Chondroitin. It saved our dog. Couldn’t even get up! Make sure that he’s not over weight. That doesn’t help the joints or hips. Good luck and I hope this helps.

    9. chiqa-d-a-d-a-d says:

      only a vet can say for sure. Signs that could point to arthritis could also be signs of other things. Limping, having a hard time getting up, crying in pain.

    10. J&J381 says:

      This does sound like it could be arthritis. Definitely meet with your vet. While you’re there, discuss putting your dog on glucosamine/chondroitin supplements. The good news is you can use the human products (discuss dosing with the vet). Human products are often cheaper than those made especially for dogs, and with Osteobiflex (the brand I use), they run a good sale every couple of months, so it pays to stock up.

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