How to Help a Dog with Hip Dysplasia?
Hip problems in dogs are fairly common and are a big concern for dog owners, especially those with larger pups.
Dog hip dysplasia is often the most feared condition since there is no cure, and it can impact your pup’s quality of life.
Despite its formidable reputation, the good news is that this disease won’t have an impact on your dog’s life expectancy.
With the right care and coping strategies, you can help your puppy or older dog lead a healthy and full life.
In this article, we're going to help you feel more empowered when caring for your fluffy friend and reveal eight ways to help a dog with hip dysplasia.
Before we dive in one great way of helping your disabled dog is to try one of our orthopedic bed for dogs.
Mild Hip Dysplasia In Dogs
Some larger breeds of dogs are indeed more likely to develop hip dysplasia.
Since large pups such as German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers tend to grow significantly in the first couple of years of their lives.
This rapid growth can lead to dog hip dysplasia, as their underdeveloped hips and joints do not sufficiently support the dog's weight and pressure.
To prevent this from happening, you must first spot the early signs of this painful condition.
If you have a puppy, pay close attention to how they sit, stand, and walk.
If you notice tenderness in the hip socket, bunny hopping, swaying, difficulty rising or climbing stairs, they may be suffering from this progressive disease.
Note: Although hip dysplasia affects larger dog breeds more than smaller ones, that doesn't mean little pups are off the hook.
So whether you have a massive ball of fluff or a tiny fluffy puppy, make sure to keep an eye on their health while they're growing up.
If puppies aren't treated until they're older, hip dysplasia in dogs can progress to painful hips, waddling instead of walking, and weak muscles.
However, if this condition is left without treatment altogether, your pup may develop osteoarthritis and other hip deformities later in life.
This can have a severe and negative impact on their quality of life.
Spot Hip Dysplasia Signs
So if you're lucky enough to have a brand new puppy, make sure to look out for bunny hopping, hind limb lameness, pain while moving, and muscle wasting from this degenerative joint disease.
If you think there is something wrong with your puppy, book an appointment with your veterinarian, rule out this condition with a quick physical exam, and require an x-ray.
If the veterinarian does confirm hip dysplasia in your dog, don't panic! Dogs with this condition will usually enjoy a long, full life.
If you are concerned about your dog's welfare, you can always discuss treatment options with your vet and figure out simple lifestyle changes to help minimize your puppy's symptoms and prevent further pain and damage to their joints.
Hip Dysplasia In Older Dogs
Sometimes this disease carries hardly any symptoms until your dog is older.
Hip dysplasia in older dogs is fairly common and more so in large dogs such as Saint Bernards, Great Danes, and German Shepherds.
When it comes to caring for a senior pup, surgery is often not recommended, but there are still plenty of ways to make your dog feel more comfortable.
From watching how many treats, they’re getting during the day to encouraging your pup to exercise and avoid stairs gently, let’s take a look at some of the best hip dysplasia treatments and coping strategies.
NOTE - While hip dysplasia is more common in some breeds of dogs, all breeds including mixed breed dogs can potentially develop the condition.
Hip Dysplasia in Dogs - Coping Strategies
If your dog has been diagnosed with this frustrating and sometimes painful condition, try not to worry too much.
We’re going to show you how you can easily make your pup feel more comfortable.
So, there are eight beautiful ways to help a dog with hip dysplasia and improve their overall quality of life without further adieu.
1: Make Them Nice & Cosy At Night
Invest in an orthopedic dog bed from Bobby Bed, made with high-quality memory foam.
This specially designed dog bed will cushion painful joints and hips and leave your pup feeling super cozy and comfortable at night.
2: Hydrotherapy For Dogs
Pretty fun to watch alternative treatment for a dog with hip dysplasia. Hydrotherapy is an excellent treatment.
A special hydrotherapy pool for dogs will help take the pressure off your pup’s joints and allow them to burn off some energy without impacting their hips and hind legs.
Watch as they enjoy splashing around in the water! This is brilliant for older dogs who struggle to exercise at home.
3: Veterinarian Grade Glucosamine
Vitamins and nutrients recommended by your vet will help support a healthy lifestyle for your dog.
Think glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
This simple change to their diet will improve your dog’s overall sense of health and well-being.
4: Hip Replacement Surgery
Depending on the severity of the condition, effective treatment for puppies and younger dogs are total hip replacement surgery.
This medical procedure is one way to eliminate pain and improve your dog’s quality of life.
However, most dogs don’t necessarily need surgery for hip dysplasia, but if your vet does recommend it, you might wish to consider this option.
5: Canine Massage Therapy
A more holistic approach to treating canine hip dysplasia is a canine massage.
By gently massaging your pup’s hips and spine, this technique will not only reduce inflammation and relax the muscles, but it will also allow you to strengthen your bond with your pup too.
6: Make Your Dog Warm
When the weather gets colder during fall and winter, you might want to consider adding extra bedding to your pup’s basket or using heat pads to ensure they’re nice and cozy at night.
Hip conditions can often get worse when it’s cold and damp outside, so try turning up the heating and popping a sweater or coat on your dog when you do venture out for a walk.
7: Focus On Food
With many health conditions, a healthy, well-balanced diet can make a huge difference for your dog.
Fatty-acids, antioxidants, and vitamins will help your dog to lead a healthier lifestyle.
This is especially important for hip dysplasia in older dogs, who won’t be able undergo a medical procedure due to shier age.
Some dog owners also prefer to switch from tinned dog food to a natural and raw dog food diet.
This, teamed with weight management, will help improve your pup’s range of motion and energy levels.
8: Physical Therapy For Dogs
Last but not least, physical therapy is another powerful treatment for hip problems in dogs.
From stretching to acupressure and even acupuncture on the hip joint area.
If you’re looking for a pretty unique approach to canine pain management that will also improve your dog’s mobility, this might be worth exploring.
H2: Tail Wagging Advice & Support
Whether you choose to treat your dog to an orthopedic dog bed with soft-touch memory foam, or you decide to upgrade their mealtime with fresh meat and vegetables.
Small changes can certainly make a big difference when it comes to treating canine hip dysplasia.
By investing time and energy into caring for your dog, you can help them to live a long, tail-wagging life just like any other dog!
At Bobby Bed, we specialize in designing high-quality memory foam dog beds to comfort painful hip conditions such as hip dysplasia in dogs.
From arthritis to canine hip dysplasia in dogs, we understand that your pup is an essential member of the family and deserves to be helped and supported in any way possible.
To explore our full range of orthopedic dog beds, specially designed to offer additional warmth, comfort, and support for puppies and senior dogs with hip conditions, visit Bobby Bed.
You might also want to explore more on the topic of dog's hip joints from our blog such as this post about how to prevent hip dysplasia in dogs or this one covering arthritis in dogs.
A Final Note - If in any doubt about your dog's health and their hip dysplasia please always consult a fully qualified veterinarian to get the best professional advice and treatment.