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Elbow Problems and Solutions

Elbow Problems and Solutions

Elbow problems in dogs are sadly all too common.

The elbow joint is basically a hinge with bones and cartilage on each side of the joint that should fit closely together. The elbow has a wide range of joint movement and the normal gait of the foreleg is dependent on it so just a small change in the shape of one part of the joint can have major consequences for its function. Elbow dysplasia (ED) is a significant problem in many dog breeds worldwide. Most common in larger breeds such as the Bernese Mountain Dog, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever and the Labrador, ED can start in puppy hood and affect the dog for the rest of its life. It is highly hereditary and as symptoms can be masked relatively easily, it is often the offspring of two suffers that are most severely affected. Put simply, ED means abnormal development of the elbow and includes three major specific abnormalities that affect different parts of the elbow joint that can then induce a secondary osteoarthritic process:

  • Osteochondritis (OCD)
  • Fragmented or uninvited medial coronoid process (FCP)
  • Ununited anconeal process (UAP)
Arthritis and osteoarthritis also affect the elbow joint and can cause extreme suffering. Arthritis simply means 'inflammation of the joints' and is sadly a common problem for many dogs. Affecting older dogs primarily, the condition can develop from an early age following problems with bone and joint development.

Luckily, there are a variety of products available to support the joint and ease suffering.

The Kruuse Elbow Protector can be used before and after surgery and in connection with chronic arthritis i.e. Osteoarthritis, OCD, ligament injuries, arthritis, ED and other assessments. An elbow protector exerts counter-pressure on swelling and also produces increased heat, thus providing the muscles with better oxygen supply and better circulation conditions. It counteracts pain, swelling and gives muscles a chance to rest correctly.
The Balto Elbow Brace (BT Soft) is a more robust product which would be a better choice if stronger support was required. Designed to protect the dog in cases of hygromas, sores, calluses on the elbow and bursitis, the brace is also ideal for use in the presence of conditions such as arthritis, osteoarthritis or elbow dysplasia. It can be used both pre and post surgery - the compression it provides increases the blood pressure in the area, thus raising the temperature and reducing the pain caused by the conditions. It keeps the injured area compressed and is also extremely efficient in protecting medications applied to the skin after surgery.


You can help further by supporting your dog from the inside Winston's Joint System is formulated to help strengthen the immune system, reduce pain and inflammation, restore mobility, and increase vitality in dogs of all ages. It is made from 100% natural human grade ingredients, so can be used alongside veterinary prescribed medication without side effects or complications. 

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