Blog

Ella’s Story – Living with Arthritis

Ella is our beautiful chocolate labrador. She was diagnosed with arthritis when she was 12 months old.  At the time I only thought older dogs suffered with this condition.  When the vet told me she had arthritis in her elbows I felt so helpless and sorry for her.

She is now 5 years old and has a full and active life. You would have no idea she had this condition. Here’s her story…

Looking Out For The Signs

Usually you see signs as your dog gets older and it can be easily overlooked and dismissed as part of the natural aging process.  Sam Gilhooley owner of Canine and Equine Magnetix® knows only too well about the signs of osteoarthritis.  Her dog Ella was only 12 months old when she was diagnosed

Ella posing for the camera.  She's five years old now and loving life.

Ella posing for the camera. She’s five years old now and loving life.

‘The first time I noticed something wasn’t right was when Ella started limping.  She would regularly do this after she’d rested from exercise.

I decided the best thing to do would be to get it checked out by the vet. The last thing I was expecting was arthritis.

When the results came back from her x-rays they’d shown arthritic change and elbow dysplasia and a few months later she had arthroscopy surgery’.

Symptoms

If you think that your dog may have the onset of arthritis there are a few symptoms to look out for:

  • Limping after rest
  • Struggling to get up from a lying down position
  • Finding it harder to go up and down stairs and to get in and out of the car
  • Joint stiffness
  • Taking longer to warm up for exercise

The first port of call should always be your vet.  Once your dog has been correctly diagnosed there are many things you can put in place to manage this condition.

Depending on the severity, your dog may be given pain relief medication.  In addition, there are excellent supplements and foods on the market particularly those containing glucosomine which will help your dog’s joints.

Managing Arthritis

Managing Ella’s arthritis at such a young age meant she couldn’t do certain things that other dogs could do.  Managing arthritis whether your dog is young or old is exactly the same.

Here are some things that we did to help Ella:

  • Weight Control – Ella had to lose a little weight to avoid putting too much pressure on her joints. It’s very hard though when you’re a labrador!
  • Restrict Repetitive Movements – She was banned from going up and down the stairs (although she sneaks up on the odd occasion)
  • Supplements – Her food was changed to one which included glucosamine and once a week she has oily fish, which she loves!
  • Exercise – She’s walked little and often rather than one long walk.  Ella just has to be careful when she’s playing fetch as the twisting and turning can aggravate her condition
  • Hydrotherapy – Before and a short while after surgery Ella would go for her weekly hydrotherapy session
  • Magnetic Dog Collar – I knew very little at the time about magnetic therapy but decided it was well worth a try

Magnetic Therapy For Dogs

Ella wearing her blue magnetic dog collar

Ella wearing her magnetic dog collar

Ella seemed to be managing pretty well so I decided to borrow the magnetic collar for my older dog Jake.

After a period of time I noticed Ella was becoming stiff in her right hind leg. So, off we went to the vets and she was diagnosed with arthritis in her right hock!

I put the magnetic collar straight back on and within a couple of days the stiffness in her hock had completely gone.

Ella’s worn a magnetic collar ever since.  She isn’t stiff anymore and has no trouble racing around with her best friend Bailey. Dare I take the magnetic collar off again?  Not a chance…

2 Responses to “Ella’s Story – Living with Arthritis”

  1. Hi Is Ella still on Metacam? Or similar pain relieve?

    • Hi Mike

      Thanks for your comment. Ella is not on any pain relief at all. She’s 7 now and just wears her magnetic dog collar and goes to hydrotherapy once a fortnight.

      Kind regards,
      Sam

Leave a Reply