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Pain Management

My 'nephew' is a nearly 12 year young Lab.    Eats and drinks well.   Weight is maintained at good level i.e., has never been overweight.     All recent vet checks resulted in 'normal' results.    Still has great personality and willingness to please.     At nearly 12, we are more inclined to assist him !

Difficulty climbing stairs and entry into vehicles.    Mobility issues are localized in rear quarters and on occasion, front right leg.  

Ramp has been built to assist with limited entry into vehicles.      

On occasion, loses balance and front right paw is bent over.   There has to be pain associated after these events, as my 'nephew' licks the front right paw.  

Is currently taking glucosomine (1 tab).

Two questions --- can glucosomine dosage be increased ?    and   Is there any other pain medication that can be administered to help with pain management ?  
2 Responses
975364 tn?1283486243
Glucosamine isn't actually a pain medication - it's a "cartilage protector." It's great that you have your dog on this, but it won't actually help with the pain. It's used to chronically long term help with reducing osteoarthritis and protecting cartilage.

Instead, I'd talk to your vet about getting your dog on a veterinary prescribed NSAID (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory). You SHOULD not give him anything OTC - these can be very toxic to your dog. Examples of veterinary prescribed NSAIDS include Rimadyl, Deramaxx, etc. You may notice a quick improvement with these medications! Your vet will want to do routine blood work to make sure his liver and kidneys can handle this medication, and again in 2 weeks, if your dog is on this chronically (after that, 1-2X/year). Hopefully you'll notice an immediate improvement with the NSAID - I know my 11 year old dog has a spring in his step after he gets his!

Best of luck with your ole' guy - hopefully this will help!

Dr. Justine Lee
Avatar universal

In addition to Dr. Lees comments which I agree with as a solution using traditional veterinary medicine.

I am a traditionally trained veterinarian, and over the last 10 plus years have learned to effectively incorporate safe, holistic, natural therapies, for my older, arthritic canine patients. I have had wonderful results working with dogs like yours using some of these natural therapies.

Although, the Glucosamine dosage may be increased, in my experience, many dogs like yours enjoy superior results using natural arthritis remedies properly formulated and dosed in combination.

The most useful arthritis nutrient products contain various combination's of Glucosamine, MSM, Omega-3 Fatty Acids (sourced as EPA, DHA), Vitamin C and Hyaluronic acid. Using a product with the above nutrients properly dosed to meet your dogs needs according to his body weight along with another natural product called VitaLife has helped many dogs like yours and may be worth consideration.

I want to mention that unlike prescription remedies such as Rimadyl that work immediately, natural products in large dogs, initially take a few weeks to "kick-in".

In my experience, natural nutrients for many dogs, have proven to be extremely effective in providing relief from arthritis pain. In some dogs, they may be initially used along with Rimadyl. Once a therapeutic blood level of the natural nutrients is reached, the Rimadyl can be weaned down and eliminated.

Just to be clear, the time it takes to achieve desired visible results with natural nutrients is directly related to body weight. The bigger the dog, the longer it takes. For labs, most of whom are large and weigh in excess of 65 pounds, it usually takes a few weeks for owners to see the initial signs of improvement. After that, most dogs continue to improve for the next several months after which they hit a steady state and continue to enjoy pain free mobility and quality of life.

Holistic therapies are very safe and carry no long term adverse health effects. It just takes a little extra time initially to see results.

Stem cell therapy is another relatively new natural option that is currently available for arthritis relief in dogs in this country.  Canine Stem cell therapy is a bit costly but results so far appear to be very, very promising.

I hope this information is helpful and am always glad to discuss this with you further.

Thank you,
Dr. Carol Osborne, DVM
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