Cats bring immense joy and companionship to our lives. As a cat parent, it can be challenging to see your cat struggle with arthritis. Arthritis is one of the most common health conditions that affects cats, and it can be debilitating if left untreated. At Tails Chiro Care, Dr. Alisha Barnes has been using pet chiropractic care to alleviate arthritis in cats. Let’s take a closer look at the common symptoms and causes of arthritis in cats, how to tell if your cat has arthritis, and how chiropractic adjustments can help alleviate discomfort. We’ll also provide tips for managing arthritis in cats alongside chiropractic treatments.
What is arthritis?
Arthritis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the joints. It’s a degenerative disease that worsens with age and can be caused by a lack of exercise and weight gain.
Arthritis can affect pets, especially cats, for a variety of reasons. Predominantly, it is an age-related condition, as the natural wear and tear of joints over the years can lead to inflammation and discomfort. However, it’s not just aging that’s to blame. Other factors like obesity due to overfeeding and lack of exercise can exert excessive pressure on the joints, accelerating the onset of arthritis. Furthermore, some cats may be genetically predisposed to arthritis. Injuries or infections can also contribute to the development of arthritis in cats. It’s important to understand these factors to effectively prevent and manage arthritis in your feline friends.
Does diet play a role in arthritis in cats?
Indeed, diet plays a significant role in managing arthritis in cats. Obesity, which often results from overfeeding and lack of exercise, can exacerbate the symptoms of arthritis. The extra weight puts undue strain on the joints, causing further inflammation and discomfort. Therefore, it’s crucial to maintain a balanced diet for your cat to prevent weight gain. Furthermore, certain foods can help alleviate symptoms of arthritis. Omega-3 fatty acids, for instance, have anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce joint inflammation. Including wet food in your cat’s diet can also be beneficial as it helps keep them hydrated and reduces the strain on their kidneys. Always consult with your vet to develop a customized diet plan suited to your cat’s specific needs.
How does arthritis affect cats?
Cats with arthritis tend to show the following signs: avoidance of jumping, stiffness of the joints, trouble climbing stairs, and general lethargy. It’s essential to be mindful of these symptoms and take your cat to a veterinarian if you notice any of them.
When cats suffer from arthritis, their behavior often undergoes subtle changes that may initially go unnoticed. Here’s a more detailed look at the signs of arthritis in cats:
- Reduced Mobility: Cats with arthritis may have difficulty moving around. They may take longer to stand up or sit down, and their movements may seem stiff or awkward. They may also limp, particularly after waking up, and may have difficulty in climbing stairs or jumping onto high surfaces.
- Changes in Grooming Habits: Due to the discomfort and pain associated with arthritis, cats may stop grooming certain parts of their bodies, leading to a noticeably unkempt coat. Conversely, they may over-groom painful areas, leading to hair loss or sores.
- Change in Temperament: Cats suffering from arthritis may become more irritable due to their discomfort. They may hiss or swipe when handled, especially if the handling causes pain.
- Altered Sleep Patterns: Pain from arthritis often interrupts sleep, so your cat may sleep more sporadically or seem restless.
- Changes in Litterbox Habits: Cats with arthritis may have difficulty getting into and out of the litterbox. This may lead to soiling outside the litterbox.
- Reduced Activity: Playtime may decline as moving becomes more difficult for cats with arthritis. They may also avoid high traffic areas in the house.
Remember, every cat is different, and the symptoms can vary. If you notice any of these signs, a visit to the vet is highly recommended.
Pet chiropractic care can help alleviate the pain and discomfort of arthritis in cats. Dr. Alisha Barnes has been treating cats with arthritis using chiropractic adjustments, which can help improve joint mobility and reduce stiffness. Chiropractic adjustments work by gently realigning the spine, which can reduce pressure on the joints and improve overall health.
There are several things you can do at home to manage arthritis in cats alongside chiropractic treatments. One is to make adjustments to your cat’s diet by adding supplements like glucosamine and chondroitin, which can help improve joint function. You can also create a comfortable and warm environment for your cat with heated beds and blankets, as warmth can help reduce joint stiffness. Additionally, create sections in your home that are easy for your cat to access, like ramps or low steps to prevent jumping.
Another important aspect of managing arthritis in cats is exercise. It’s essential to keep your cat active, even with arthritis. You can achieve this by encouraging your cat to play with toys or spending time with them each day. By keeping your cat active, you can help improve their general wellness and reduce the risk of obesity, which can exacerbate arthritis.
Arthritis Treatment for Cats in Boulder, Windsor & Fort Collins
Arthritis in cats can be a debilitating condition that causes discomfort, stiffness, and lethargy. At Tails Chiro Care, Dr. Alisha Barnes has been helping cats with arthritis through pet chiropractic care, which can help improve joint mobility and reduce stiffness. While chiropractic adjustments can help alleviate symptoms and pain, it’s also important to make adjustments to your cat’s diet, environment and encourage exercise. As a cat parent, it’s essential to keep an eye out for the common signs of arthritis and seek help from your veterinarian if necessary. If you suspect your cat has arthritis, contact us at Tails Chiropractic Care today!