Northdale Veterinary Practice
Pain relief is the cornerstone of managing DJD. The vet will normally prescribe a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) to help keep your dog mobile and pain-free. There are a number of important points to bear in mind with these drugs:
- NSAIDs should be used with care in patients that are dehydrated or suffering with heart, liver or kidney disease. The vet will normally check for these illnesses as part of your initial clinical assessment and may recommend blood tests to check for any problems before commencing treatment. You should contact the vet if your pet’s health changes, for example if he or she becomes inappetant or starts drinking more.
- A small number of dogs may show a reaction to the medication, usually in the form of an upset stomach. If this happens, stop the medication immediately and phone for advice. The vet may recommend an alternative.
- Some individuals respond better to one drug than another. So if the initial response is disappointing it may be worth trying other medication.
Often dogs will be given NSAIDs long-term. Pets that are on prescription medication will need to have a check-up at least once every six months. In between check-ups you can obtain further supplies of medication from the surgery by giving at least 48 hours notice.
CARTROPHEN VET® is a disease modifying drug for DJD which helps to control pain and also protects and supports the recovery of joint cartilage that is damaged by the arthritic process. The vet may recommend this as an alternative to NSAIDs. It is given as a course of 4 injections at weekly intervals, and if there is a good response the course is usually repeated every 6 months.
ACCUPUNCTURE can be very effective at controlling pain in some individuals. If you would like to try this alternative treatment for your pet, please ask for details at reception.