Chihuahua Knee Problems
Just like humans, Chihuahuas also suffer from common knee pain like everyone else. It can range from mild to severe knee pain especially during active years such as during the childhood years and adolescence. This is normal for all small breeds of dogs and can even be a symptom of a larger underlying disease such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis. The treatment and prevention of Chihuahua knee pain are also very simple. In fact, you can treat and prevent it with natural treatments and preventive measures.
When the knee joint is forced to swell due to too much activity, the delicate cartilage is damaged and can be caused by injury, bones grow improperly, infection, and even fractures. When the joint is swollen, there is decreased blood flow to that area which leads to severe pain. For instance, if the person is in high heels all day, there is less blood flow to the quadriceps femoris muscle, which results in knee pain. This can be avoided by wearing flat shoes and walking barefoot to prevent excessive swelling and pain. You must also take extra care to keep your Chihuahua’s patella straight even when they are playing because flat feet can cause Chihuahua knee problems as well.
The condition of the joints can be diagnosed through x-rays and computerized tomography (CT) scans.
Blood tests can also help in diagnosis and a biopsy is needed to look at the bones to determine the extent of Chihuahua’s knee problems. There are different types of treatment available for this condition depending on the severity of Chihuahua’s knee problems. If the cause of the problem is an injury or an infection, antibiotic ointment or oral medication may be prescribed and anti-inflammatory medications are also available.
Osteoarthritis, the most common cause of knee joint pain in Chihuahuas, is caused by wear and tear on the cartilage. The cartilage becomes thin and small bones rub together with it resulting in arthritis pain. A Chihuahua with osteoarthritis will experience increased pain and stiffness in its knees as time goes by. If the condition is not treated, the bones will become weak and the cartilage will lose its elasticity. As a result, there will be a greater chance for the bones to dislocate causing more pain.
For milder cases of knee osteoarthritis, there is an available non-surgical treatment called the Knee Brace. A Chihuahua knee brace can help support the knee joint while reducing pain, swelling, and pressure. Made from an elastomeric polymer, the Knee Brace allows Chihuahuas to flex their knees without aggravating their pain. Because the Knee Brace has no screws or straps, it is completely unnoticeable and should never be felt as a slight weight change.
Chiropractors and other experts believe that chiropractic adjustments help ease arthritis pain in dogs. Dogs are often misdiagnosed with arthritis since the symptoms resemble human knee problems. Symptoms include aching knees, limping legs, and pawing at the ground. While this sounds like the typical signs of canine arthritis, specialists are quick to point out that the majority of dogs with this disease do not have arthritic joints. Instead, they have muscle tension, tightness, or swelling.
If you suspect your Chihuahua may have knee arthritis, you should take him to see the vet as soon as possible.
Your vet can run tests to find out if arthritis is the culprit. He will probably start your dog on an anti-inflammatory medication as well as prescribe an oral pain-relieving and dietary supplement. An X-ray will be done to determine the severity of the knee pain. It’s important to know that although the treatment for Chihuahua knee arthritis is fairly simple, the effects could be long lasting if the problem isn’t addressed quickly. The longer the dog has continued the pain, the more likely he’ll suffer permanent damage to his knee.
While there are no cures for Chihuahua’s arthritis, there are plenty of ways to alleviate the symptoms. Since arthritis is typically associated with old age, some experts recommend physical therapy to help the dogs cope with old age. Jumpers knee support bands are available for Chihuahuas that need extra support to their knees. They’re inexpensive and should prove effective.