Jan 5, 2024

Improve Your Dog’s Joint Health During Walk Your Pet Month

Posted by Bob under Exercise For Pets

January is Walk Your Pet Month, an opportune time to celebrate the numerous benefits that daily walks bring to our furry friends, particularly our canine companions. Regular walks play a crucial role in maintaining the overall well-being of our pets and can actually improve their joint health. You may be surprised to learn that walking can help manage the symptoms of and even delay the onset of osteoarthritis in dogs.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a common ailment in dogs. According to the stats, 1 in 5 dogs in the U.S. are affected by OA, and it has been identified as a leading cause of euthanasia. Symptoms of OA include pain, reduced mobility, and a diminished quality of life.

Fortunately, walking can be a game-changer in mitigating these symptoms. Regular exercise helps our pets maintain a healthy weight, which alleviates stress on joints. Additionally, walking can help to strengthen the muscles and supporting soft tissue structures around the joints, promoting increased joint stability. It can also increase joint fluid circulation, which is beneficial to maintaining healthy joint cartilage.

According to Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine, “Regular physical activity is paramount in the treatment of osteoarthritis both in humans and animals. A lifestyle of regular activity that is moderated away from intermittent extremes of exercise (such as long hikes on the weekends) and activities to which the pet is not conditioned is essential. Ideally, multiple shorter walks are better than one long one. The same activity every day (or slightly increasing if tolerated) is ideal.”

That being said, all pets are different and what works for one dog may not work for another. Your veterinarian can help you craft an exercise regimen that is specifically tailored to your pet. And if your dog already suffers from OA, VetStem Cell Therapy may help get them back to their daily walks! Speak to your veterinarian or contact us to receive a list of providers near you.