If your dog is sick, you take him to the vet. If he's injured, you do everything possible to make him feel better, including ordering a custom dog knee brace to improve his mobility. However, these are only two small pieces of the puzzle. You don't want to always be reacting to an illness or injury. In order for your dog to have the highest quality of life possible, you want to be proactive and prevent any of this bad stuff from happening in the first place. Here's how to do that:
#1 Know your dog's predisposition.
Did you know that some breeds are more likely to injure their CCL than others? The larger the breed is, the more likely they are to develop knee problems. St. Bernards, Labrador Retrievers, Rottweilers, Golden Retrievers, and Newfoundlands are at an especially high risk. In fact, Rottweilers are up to five times more likely to experience issues with their CCL as well as hip dysplasia than other breeds. Dachshunds are more likely to injure their backs. Knowing what your dog is predisposed to injure due to their body shape and size will go a long way towards keeping them injury-free.
#2 Encourage good exercise habits
A sedentary dog is not a healthy dog. Just like people, your dog needs some quality exercise time each and every day. However, again just like people, this needed exercise is also likely to cause an injury. Active dogs are at an increased risk for leg and knee injuries. Dogs can overwork themselves or get too overzealous with their playtime, accidentally tripping, stumbling, or landing wrong after a jump. He may simply not see a hole in the ground when he's running after the frisbee. Accidents happen! You don't need to keep them inside and in a protective bubble; you do need to monitor their activity though and be aware of any hazards in the area. Be sure he is active every day. Keeping him inside all week and then making him run a marathon on Saturday is a one-way ticket to an injury!
#3 Keep vigilant in your dog's golden years
No matter what breed your dog is, he is more likely to be injured as he gets older. His joints become tighter. Arthritis can lead to muscle atrophy. Muscle mass may begin breaking down. An ankle or wrist brace can help support his limbs and promote exercise, as it takes some of his pain away. Senior dogs also gain more weight. This is because their nutritional needs change and their level of activity decreases. Feeding him specialized food for senior dogs can help battle their slowing metabolism.
We are all about preventative care for dogs here at Bionic Pets. We want to help your dog before he is injured and support them all along the way, so he can live a long, healthy, and happy life.