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Prevention is the best medicine. But sometimes, it’s too late for preventative measures and we have to treat the damage that’s already done. If you’ve ever had a knee injury, even if it was just a tiny twist, you can imagine how painful it is. Dogs are really playful and energetic creatures and because of this, they know the pain of a sprained or twisted knee a little too well. Although these knee problems may be common in canines, there are plenty of things that you could do to treat and even prevent them before they happen.
- Understand what his risk factors are.
Any dog can experience these knee problems at some or other point in their lives. However, some dog breeds are more prone to them than others. Understanding whether your dog is one of the breeds that are more at risk can help you prepare for the injury, treat it better, and in some cases, even prevent it from happening altogether. Larger dogs could get a cranial cruciate ligament tear more than smaller breeds. Patellar luxations are often the concern with smaller dogs.
- Learn the signs.
Dogs can’t communicate using speech so it’s our responsibility to try and understand our pet as much as we can using his actions and little noises. If your dog is limping or not putting weight on one of his limbs, chances are, he has a knee injury. They might limp after doing exercise, have difficulty getting up from a sitting position, or even hold one of his feet off the ground. These are all signs that he’s in pain. Go to the vet immediately.
- Encourage him to exercise.
As dogs age, so do their bodies. They won’t be able to handle a lot of strenuous exercises like they used to in their golden days. Change their exercise routine from strenuous activities to more lush walks in the park. Avoid exercises with high impact.
- Add joint supplements to their diet.
Dachshunds have really disproportionate bodies. Their legs are too tiny to support their elongated bodies. This puts a lot of pressure on their knees and makes them more susceptible to injury. Try adding a joint supplement to his daily meals to strengthen and protect his weak knees. Ask your vet for advice before starting your pet on any new diet.
- Physical therapy.
Just like in humans, dogs with knee injuries can also benefit greatly from physical therapy. When combined with adequate rest, pain management, and weight management, physical therapy is sure to get your doggo back on his feet in no time at all. Some knee injuries can even be completely avoided with the right physical therapy treatment plan.