Let's Talk About Arthritis: Part 1

So when I sat down to start writing this blog, I asked myself: Self, what would be a good starting topic? Something that would interest all dog owners and pertain to the existence of PawFriction. The topic that kept coming up was Arthritis; a condition that affects all dogs from large to small and is often difficult for pet owners to recognize at home.  I will endeavor to make this as non-scientific and as exciting as possible so let's get started!

What exactly is arthritis?
That's a great question! (thanks self!) To put it in its simplest terms, arthritis is inflammation of a joint. There are many...many types of arthritis. We will focus on the most common, the one we all think about with our pets: osteoarthritis, or OA for short. Your vet may also use the term Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD)Osteoarthritis is a degeneration of a joint over time leading to pain, stiffness, bone changes, and muscle loss.

Where does Osteoarthritis come from?
Again, in its simplest form, there are two types of OA; primary and secondary. We really don't understand just yet the cause of primary OA. Secondary OA has a variety of causes:

  1. Developmental Diseases: Hip Dysplasia, Elbow Dysplasia, Legg-Calve Perthes, etc.
  2. Obesity
  3. Soft Tissue Injuries: Ligament tears, meniscal tears, etc.
  4. Trauma/Injury: Fractures, Disc Disease, Traumatic Patella Luxation
  5. Many, many other conditions but we will stop there but hopefully can cover them another time

So I think for now I will stop here. This is going to be a multi-parter, so I hope you are prepared to go down the rabbit hole with me. We will try to pepper in some fun stories, maybe some guest writers, etc. I hope you come back often and contact me anytime if you have questions!

Pass on a pat on the head to your dogs and have a wonderful day!
-Dr. B