Dog owner question
"Hi! My Estrela Mountain dog, named Wulffy, sometimes has difficulty moving and shows pain, especially in cold weather. I have heard that this breed is prone to arthritis and hip dysplasia. What symptoms should I look out for and what can I do to help him?"
"Hi! It is very good news that you have recognized the possible symptoms and are concerned about Wulffy's health.
Estrelai Mountain Dogs are indeed prone to arthritis and hip dysplasia, these diseases are common problems among large-bodied dog breeds.
Arthritis in dogs develops slowly and the symptoms are therefore difficult to detect. These include stiffness, restricted movement, manifestations of pain during movement, difficulty in stepping and a decrease in normal activity.
Hip dysplasia can cause similar symptoms and often leads to the development of arthritis.
If Wulffy shows these symptoms, consult your vet!
The doctor can diagnose the presence of arthritis or hip dysplasia by X-ray, ultrasound or other tests.
Treatment options include painkillers, anti-inflammatories, weight control and physiotherapy. Surgical intervention may also be necessary in some cases.
But the most important thing is to work with your doctor to get Wulffy on a suitable diet and exercise regime.
Overweight dogs are at higher risk of hip dysplasia and arthritis, so it is important to keep Wulffy's weight within a healthy range.
Regular moderate intensity exercise, such as walks and light games, can help to strengthen muscles and reduce stiffness.
I hope this has helped and that Wulffy will soon be back in great shape!"