Arthrosis occurs in animals as often as in humans. Some breeds of dogs are predisposed to this disease more than others. So, for example, representatives of giant breeds are more likely to suffer from arthrosis due to high mechanical stress on the joints of the limbs, and in Fighting breeds the disease is a consequence of injuries. In representatives of dwarf rocks, the cause of arthrosis is the systematic slipping of the patella.
Causes of arthrosis
In 80% of cases of lameness in dogs, the cause is arthrosis of large joints of the extremities. Arthrosis occurs in dogs of all ages, although, mainly, in older animals. But this prevalence is caused not only by degenerative degenerative processes, which are characteristic of all animals with age, but also because arthrosis has a long period of development.
It is also established that the disease has an association with the sex of the dog and is most common in males. The main risk factor for the development of pathology is the high weight of the animal. Such breeds as beagle, chow-chow , retriever, rottweiler are more predisposed to arthrosis than representatives of middle breeds.
Primary arthrosis causes birth trauma, for example dysplasia , as a result of which the distribution of load on the joint is disturbed, and there is a rapid degeneration of the cartilage. In addition to the species, there is also a genetic predisposition. The failure in the chromosomes responsible for the synthesis of collagen tissues in the body causes a violation of the structure of the cartilage, weakness of the ligamentous tendon apparatus, a violation of the state of the blood vessels that supply the tissues of the joint.
Scientists are the main cause of arthrosis is a violation of blood circulation in the tissues of the joints. It leads to a decrease in the activity of metabolic and trophic processes, imbalance of resorption and regeneration in bone tissue, inhibits the restoration and growth of cartilage matrix cells.
Secondary arthrosis causes:
- joint trauma - dislocations, slipping of the patella, rupture of ligaments, fractures , hemorrhages in the joint;
- inflammatory diseases - arthritis, synovitis;
- hormonal imbalance due to aging or pregnancy;
- violation of blood supply due to pathology of veins.
The listed reasons do not finish the list, as till now scientists at studying the mechanism of occurrence of an arthrosis open all new factors of its occurrence. So, for example, it was found that the level of proteoglycans - biological complexes consisting of polysaccharides and protein plays an important role in preserving the cartilage matrix of the joint. They keep the balance of fluid in the tissue - cartilage by 70-80% consists of water.
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Types and stages of pathology development
Dehydration of cartilage occurs in the early stages of the development of arthrosis. On its surface, microcracks are formed. Initially, the degenerative process is compensated by the function of chondrocytes, which synthesize collagen and proteoglycans. And if at the first stage of arthrosis changes occur at the cell level, then in the second stage the process affects chondrocytes, microcirculation in the joint tissues is broken, clots are formed, stagnation in the venous and lymphatic systems is noted, stenosis of the capillaries occurs.
Arthrosis enters the second stage, which is characterized by the breaking of cartilaginous tissue, its thinning, the formation of protein edema and the appearance of pain syndrome. The articular cleft decreases and the mechanical pressure on the joint bones increases.
At the third stage, the cartilage is truncated locally, bone tissue is exposed. In these places, under the influence of an increased mechanical load, there is an abnormal growth of the cat's tissue and the formation of osteophytes. These bone "spines" reduce motor activity, cause pain. In the interarticular slot, fragments of the cartilage fall, and an inflammatory process occurs that leads to deformation and disruption of the limb axis.
The paws of the dogs are bent and the animal can not move normally. Further progression of arthrosis leads to ankylosis - complete immobility of the limb. Osteoarthritis affects all joints. So the following types of arthrosis are distinguished:
- the knee joint;
- the shoulder;
- joints of the hind limbs;
- of the hip joint.
Regardless of where the disease is located, arthrosis in dogs has characteristic symptoms.
Symptoms and manifestations of the disease
The manifestation of arthrosis in dogs depends on a number of factors:
- age of the animal;
- presence of concomitant diseases, aggravating pathology;
- the number of affected joints;
- stage of pathology.
The first symptom of the disease, which the owners of the dog pay attention to, is limping. However, the symptoms may be different. For example, if both joints of the hind limbs are damaged, there is a violation of the pelvic girdle. The dog is moving uncertainly, there is a shaky gait. The animal hardly gets up, quickly gets tired.
The severity of lameness depends not only on the degree of damage to the joints, but also on the constitution of the animal, the type of its nervous system. In some dog breeds, the pain threshold is high, and lameness manifests itself in the late stages of arthrosis. The doctor or the owner of such breeds of dogs should consider this fact during the therapy. At them disappearance of lameness is not the reason for the termination of treatment.
The severity of symptoms can vary within a day. So, for example, a characteristic sign of arthrosis is the initial lameness, which manifests itself after rest. This is especially noticeable from the morning, when the rest period of the dog was the longest. The animal is difficult to get up, it is very limping until the functional capacity of the joint is restored. Then lameness decreases or disappears completely.
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Treatment of arthrosis in dogs
Currently, dog owners and some veterinarians prefer various dietary supplements. But this group of drugs is not a pharmaceutical and does not have clinical studies of their effectiveness.
For the treatment of arthrosis using drugs from the group of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NPVP) - Ramadil, Quadriazol, Ketofen, Karprodil, Norocarp, Previcox, Vetalgin, Trokoksil, etc. The drug is prescribed by the course, depending on the stage of the disease and the tolerance of the drug. If the medication causes diarrhea and vomiting, then stop it.
Drugs in the event of seasonal lameness caused by exacerbation of the disease in the cold and wet period of the year, appointed short courses in 3-5 days. The necessary medicine is selected individually, since there are no strict recommendations in the therapy of arthrosis. Reception of NSAIDs is combined with therapy with chondroprotectors and "liquid prostheses".
In case of poor tolerability of NSAIDs, veterinarians recommend treatment with Heppi Dog feed additive "Artofit". Its composition includes glycosaminoglycans, micro- and macro elements, vitamins - all substances necessary for nutrition and restoration of cartilaginous tissue.
Clinical studies of the effectiveness of "Arthrophyte" in the treatment of arthrosis of large joints in dogs were conducted. For a month they were treated only with "Arthrophyte", excluding all medicines and fodder supplements. The first effect was noticeable after taking the supplement for 5 days, it increased gradually and reached its maximum value on the 15th day of treatment. A high (80%) effectiveness of treatment was noted. At 20% the negative result was connected with necessity of surgical treatment of joints.
However, these drugs are a means of symptomatic therapy. Their application can not eliminate either the structure of the joint or the destruction of the cartilage. For this, preparations based on hyaluronic acid are used. So, for example, sodium hyaluronate is a chondroprotector that stimulates chondrosynthesis and inhibits enzymes that destroy cartilage. Sodium hyaluronate is part of the synovial fluid, provides lubrication of the cartilaginous surface of the joint and eliminates the inflammatory process.
Hyaluronic acid has long been successfully used in the treatment of arthrosis in horses. But until recently, there has been no research into its effectiveness in treating dogs. In the clinical study was used the drug Hionate, the company Bayer Vital GmbH. In veterinary practice, it is used to treat horses, and since there is no analogue for dogs, Hionate was used to treat arthrosis in dogs of different breeds and ages.
The drug was injected twice intravenously with an interval between injections - 1 week. In those animals in which no pronounced effects were noted, the injection was done a third time. All animals showed improvement in the condition, decreased lability, pain and inflammation. The results of the study allow us to recommend the Hionate for long-term use in joints deforming arthrosis in dogs.
Also for treatment is recommended the drug Chondrokan, which is produced by Orling in the Czech Republic. This complex includes hydrolyzed collagen, glycosaminoglycans, vitamins, minerals. The drug affects the condition of bone, cartilaginous tissue and ligamentous tendon apparatus.
In severe pain, it is recommended to use the preparation Gelakan Fast, which additionally includes bosfellin, which has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect on the affected joint.
Surgical operations, for example, arthroplasty, are performed only in extreme cases and in young animals. But dog owners do not often agree to an operation in animals, when lameness is not very pronounced, but in a later period, when the joint is badly damaged and the effectiveness of surgical treatment is low. Therefore, the main direction of therapy for arthrosis in dogs is symptomatic therapy and the use of chondroprotectors.