Dog Joint Care After Surgery
While aftercare in the weeks immediately following the procedure is extremely important, there are several ways you can help your dog's joints in the years to come as well. Here are the best ways to get the most out of your dog€™s joint surgery 1, 2, and 5 years after.
Post-Surgery Care 1 Year Out
Continue a High-Quality Joint SupplementIf you don't already, providing a high-quality Omega-3 supplement is one of the best and easiest things you can do to help your dog's joints. While many pet parents are diligent about this immediately following surgery, it can fall by the wayside as time goes on. We urge you to continue a daily supplement not just a year following surgery, but for your dog's entire life. So how do you choose the best, most complete supplement? Most people are familiar with glucosamine, and to a lesser degree chondroitin, as key ingredients in a good joint supplement. But what many people don't realize is that it's just as important to find one that includes natural ingredients with proven anti-inflammatory benefits such as MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) or vitamin C, to name a few of the more common ones. TopDog's joint supplement GlycanAid contains everything you need to give your dog the best quality support, including glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM, Cetyl-M, and Vitamin C.
Change the Way Your Dog Exercises1 year post-surgery, your dog is likely feeling pretty good and is eager to run, jump, and play. While your pup can certainly have a good romp, following a few simple guidelines when it comes to playtime can work wonders for keeping their joints healthy. First, be sure to always warm up for a few minutes with some fast-paced walking or slow jogging, which will loosen up their joints and get blood flowing to their muscles, which reduces the risk of injury. Avoid exercising your dogs on hard surfaces like pavement, and instead favor surfaces with a little give to cushion their joints, like soft grass. And finally, avoid any form of exercise that encourages your dog to jump high, like an intense game of fetch. For dogs with joint issues, a hard landing can spell disaster.
Post-Surgery Care 2 Years Out
Maintain a Healthy Weight
While many pet parents understand the cardiovascular risks of having an overweight pet, any extra weight your pup is carrying around also puts a huge strain on their joints. Regardless, an alarming amount of dogs in America are still obese. We urge you to get and keep your dog at a healthy weight in the post-surgery years, not only for their joint health but for their overall well-being and quality of life.
Step 1 is to make sure you're not overfeeding your dog. As a rule of thumb, do not believe what the guidelines or instructions say on your bag of dog food. The truth is that in today's society with the average dog's lifestyle, pet food manufacturers are recommending way too much food.
Step 2 is to make sure your dog is getting consistent exercise.
Step 3, which may surprise you, is to never stop giving your dog treats just simply break them up into smaller pieces. Giving and receiving treats is so important to the human-canine bond, but breaking them into smaller pieces will give you the same emotional benefits with fewer calories.