Monday, September 28, 2009

How to Help Your Arthritic Gordon Setter

Photo By: Karen Thomason "Happy" Age 12

Do you have a Gordon Setter with arthritis or joint pain? There may be a few things you can do to help relieve the pain your Gordon is suffering. You have probably seen the advertisements for Glucosamine and/or Chondroitin, for the treatment of arthritis in humans. Both ingredients, are important building blocks in the synthesis and maintenance of cartilage in the joint. They are not pain pills, but they can repair the joints to some degree and prevent further damage. Ultimately, that will lesson the pain. These supplements are now widely used in treating osteoarthritis in humans and are so successful that they have become the number one treatment for osteoarthritis in dogs as well. After a vet check, to diagnose correctly, this may be one good option for your aging Gordon. Other things you can do include making sure your Gordon gets the proper amount of exercise and help your dog maintain a healthy weight. Being over weight can do a lot of damage to joints and bones, not to mention their health in general. You can give your furry friend a rub down, or massage, that will help relax stiff muscles and help promote ease of movement. Talk to your vet about how to do this properly, for older dogs who are in pain. Remember to be gentle. Cold and dampness makes arthritis hurt more. Providing a heating pad or heated bed, in a dry warm environment will probably help a lot. They make lots of doggie beds with orthopedic foam that is easy on your dogs old bones. And finally, you can do little things to make the day to day activities easier for your Gordon, like replacing steps with a ramp, if your Gordon is having trouble with steps or avoiding them. Don't leave them outside for long periods of time, especially in cold and wintery weather. Don't walk them, or kennel them any place that has a slick surface such as shiny wood floors or ice covered ground. Steady footing prevents injuries. Make sure their food and water are placed for easy access. You can get feeders that are of different heights to make it easier for the dog to eat, especially if they are having problems in their spine or neck. And finally, just take a look around your house for anything that might make life harder for your aging pal, and remove it or modify it. Our Gordon Setters give so much of themselves their whole lives, to please us. We should do everything within our means to give back to them when they need us the most.

SOURCE: For more detail click on the title!


  1. Happy looks, well, pretty happy curled up on his rug. I agree with pretty much everything you said. You have to treat them pretty much like old people. Keep them warm and comfortable and do everything you can to avoid falls. They kill more old folks and they can do the same to a dog. I've used the Glucosamine and Chondroitin just because it might help and probably can't hurt. The researh so far has failed to support the claims that it helps repair injured joints but at least you feel that you are doing something to help your old pal. Last winter my old girl, Ginger (who looks a lot like Happy), went out in the frozen yard while we were at work and wandered down yard past the area I cleared for her. When I got home, she was in the house wet, exhausted and covered with poop. The poor thing had probably struggled on the ice for a long time to get up the hill and back in the house. I still think that she never really recovered from her ordeal that day. As they get old their thought process slows down just like us so don't expect them to act like they did when they were younger.

  2. It makes me sad to hear stories like that of Ginger, but then again, at least she has someone who cares for her in her old age. She's lucky in that way. I found an article on a new treatment for osteoarthritis in the hips of dogs. I'll be posting it later today. Got a little more research to do first. It may be worth looking at for Ginger. And Thanks so much Art, for your participation in getting information out to those who aren't as experienced or knowledgeable.