Monday, October 27, 2008

Question of the Week- Hip and Joint Health

The results of the poll are in, so the Question of the Week answers the question: "What issues would you like more information about concerning your pets health? " The result was Hip and Joint issues.

This was not a surprising outcome to the poll; GreenPets staff gets questions everyday about hip and joint health for both dogs and cats of all ages.

There are a few things I would like to discuss first, mostly because there is an important difference in natural vs. conventional treatments of hip and joint pain. Usually people come into GreenPets and tell us that they have been on a prescribed medicine recommended by their vet and are looking to put their companions on something more natural. It still amazes me that people are not aware of some of the long term effects of prescription medications on the health of their animals. We know that if we, as humans, are on certain prescription medications for long periods of time, our body suffers in other ares.. why is it a surprise that this is also a truth for our animals?

Most of the prescribed medicines are NSAIDS- which stands for nonsteroidal anti inflammatory drugs. These drugs block the production of prostaglandins- which are a group of chemicals produced by cells in the body responsible for inflammation, pain and fever. Blocking these symptoms does seem like one way to go, but prostaglandins are also responsible for protecting the stomach lining against acids, and are necessary for clotting of the blood. Any prolonged use of these drugs could have hazardous effects on the health of your animal that most drugs will be unable to help later down the road. Ulcers, kidney and liver failure, and nervous system abnormalities are all side effects of these types of drugs.

The key factor in this information is that whenever you are only treating symptoms, you are refusing to look at a solution to the problem from a holistic point of view. Block one problem, cause another. GreenPets has a firm belief that it does not have to be that way.

Natural treatments supply the body with building blocks to joint health. Glucosamine, chondroitin and hyaluronic acid would all be produced naturally in a healthy body. By supplying an animal with these basics, the body repairs itself naturally and there are no side effects. There are a number of different herbs that can also be supplemented that will help promote different anti-inflammatory properties and provide anti-oxidants responsible for cell formations and healthy circulation. Keeping your animals body healthy and performing as it would naturally is the best way to ensure the long happy, pain-free life of your pet.

GreenPets carries several different treatments for hips and joints, they can come in the form of powder, treats, liquids and pills. We are constantly researching the best products and we keep a variety in the store because like anything else, certain animals will react differently to different treatments than others.

Here are just a few of our favorites- recommended usually by our own clients and their results.
Ark Naturals has a wide range of products including Sea Mobility treats, and the popular Joint Rescue pills. Vet Best is another product with a very strong glucosamine supplement. Look for their Aches and Pains supplement as well. Dogswell makes a jerky treat called Happy Hips that we cannot keep on our shelves. Also, most of these products have added herbs to the product which help keep joints lubricated and have natural anti-inflammatory properties such as Yucca, Cayenne, Devils Claw and Vitamin C.

As with any holistic approach to health care, keeping an open mind and knowing that rotation is key will make sure you are giving your animal the best method of pain prevention possible.

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