Hi, I'm new to this board but I'm looking for any tips or info to help my american cocker spaniel Sophie. Long story short- Monday we found out the she has severe arthritis that is the result of undiagnosed hip dysplasia. She 7 yrs old. I didn't have x-rays done on her hips when she was younger because she didn't show signs of hip dysplasia. She has food and skin allergies and is on HA food. She has never shown signs of pain and other than the injury to her hip that resulted in the x-rays on monday she is very happy still. The Vet put her on on glucosomine/condroitin and Metacam to start but I'm wondering if there are things we can do to make life easier for her around the house?
You can get the glucosimine, chondroiten, msm at WM or any drug store & I'm sure much cheaper than from the vet. Don't let him tell you it doesn't address pain because I can tell you from personal experience it does, so there is no need for the metacam.
What is HA food? the complete name please As for what to do at home - if you have large areas that are not carpeted put some throw rugs out. Be sure to use the stuff on the back to keep them from moving.
Raise her food & water bowls up.
If she is accoustomed to getting on the couch or your bed - get her steps to climb up so she is not jumping.
Thanks for the tips. We have all hardwood except in the bedrooms. She has a mat to lay on, but I'll look into stairs for the couch and bed (she jumps up on both once in a while) We have a papasan chair she likes to lay in most of the time. At night she sleeps on a dog bed. Its just a giant pillow. I used to have an orthopedic cat bed, do they have orthopedic dog beds?? She's actually going off metacam because there was blood in her stool (she's been on it 2 days)And we have to switch from the vet glucosamine because it has pork flavor which she shouldn't have with her allergies. But the vet said he would give me a refund on it :)
HA= Hypoallergenic (specifically Purina Veterinary Diets HA Hypoallergenic Dry)
She's been on the HA for six years and its the only food she's been able to tolerate. I've thought of trying something else but it's what my vet recommends and I do trust my vet. I have had problems with the food. It's supposed to be made on a dedicated line to keep the food pure but a couple of years ago there was a problem with other food mixed into the bag. I hate to switch in the middle of all this other stuff going on. The skin sores only started in the last year or so. I really don't know what to do. I bought Sophie some raised dishes so she won't have to bend to eat and some stairs so she won't have to jump up or down. She used to do agility so she thought the stairs were fun.
I really am not a big fan of the Purina diets, have you tried the Z/D Ultra formula?There is also a diet called JD from hills which is a joint diet, but if there is an allergy it may just irritate it. There is alot of information about allergies, I'm sure that there is a dog out there that is allergic to corn, but there isn't any proof yet that corn is really the culprit when it comes to allergies.The fact is, is that almost every food uses corn.Even diets that are for intestinal problems use corn. Alot of dogs simply have a protein intolerance and its the protien molecules that cause the dog to break out or react to things.(Kind of why babies have baby formula) Cockers are a kind of water dog really, hunters used them for flushing out ducks and stuff, water dogs tend to have skin that excreats more oils then other dogs, So if the dog is say allergic to an ingredient, it comes out in the skin and the body reacts to it, so sometimes bathing is recommended occasionnally.Try the ZD formula if the diet your on isn't working, my male had horrible skin infections, he was loseing hair etc, after a week on the Z/D he started to heal.Today he is actually off it and on a B/D Hills diet that is for senior animals, if it has joint ingredients I don't know but it sure works great, and my female has Hip dysplasia. Also keep your dogs weight right down, so there is less stress on the joints, exercise regularly, the saying is don't use it you loose it, so keep those leg muscles strong, and the muscles will do most of the work instead of all the joints.
Ohhh be assured there are tons of foods available with no corn, soy or wheat or any of the other things that cause all sorts of problems - yeast, by-products etc. They are called holistic
I am active on 5 message boards where as you can imagine, the food subject comes up daily. I can tell you from not only my own personal experience but from hundreds I have discussed it with or read - there is a huge difference in coat condition, shiney fur, no more ear infections, no more skin problems or infections. Feeding a good food without all that crap in it can also make a big difference in gas & bad breath
It is also worth noting that the food companies are well known for making little changes in the food without telling you. You may want to call them & inquire if any have been made since you are now having problems with it.