How to Care for Dogs with Hip and Joint Problems

Hip and joint problems in dogs, especially large breed dogs are unfortunately, all too common. As a proud “mommy” to Jeff, a robust gentle of a giant St. Bernard dog and Meadow, a stunningly sweet Newfoundland dog, I have experienced the trials and tribulations of caring for dogs with hip and joint problems. Also, as a registered nurse, I am all too familiar with with damaging effects hip and joint problems can cause to my patients. Dogs experience the same pain and disability from these conditions, just as humans do. The physiology and treatments are very similar as well. Degenerative joint disease, osteoarthritis, and hip dysplasia are painful diseases that can cause limitation in a dog’s ability to move and function normally without experiencing pain. According to the book “Your Older Dog”, by Jean Callahan and Ann Marie Manning, additional symptoms of osteoarthritis can be stiffness, mild pain when the affected joint is touched and licking the affected joint. In addition to pain, other symptoms include lameness, which means that your dog cannot use his legs properly and difficulty rising.

I am all too familiar with how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems, as I have much experience caring for my own giant breed dogs afflicted with hip and joint problems. One morning I was awakened to an unfamiliar sound. It almost sounded like a baby crying. Since my daughter is almost 15, and we have no other babies in the house, I investigated further. Nothing was amiss until I approached my angelic Newfoundland dog, Meadow. As she tried to get up to greet me, she let out the saddest whimpering sound I ever heard, which devastated me. “What is it, Meadow Bear?” I asked. Anyone who is a dog owner will tell you that they talk to their dogs! Her spunkiness and enthusiasm where gone. She did perk up, however, when I asked her if she wanted to go for a ride. Now she wasn’t her usual exuberant self anticipating the car ride, because she was in so much pain, but I did get a rise out of her and she slowly tagged along and gingerly claimed her seat (with our help) in the car. Little did she know, she was on her way to the vet.

After the examination, which included a thorough hands on exam and x-rays, it was determined that Meadow, in all probability was suffering from osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease that affects the hip and joints. According to the vet at the VCA Animal Hospital, Meadow’s prognosis was excellent due to effective treatments that were available in the care of dogs with hip and joint problems. One of the treatments was to give our dog Rimadyl, a 24 hour non-steroidal anti inflammatory (NSAID) that is given once a day. Anti-inflammatory medications are also the gold standard when it comes to treating humans with hip and joint diseases as well, as I have seen in my years of seeing arthritic patients at the hospital every day. Meadow would be taking her Rimadyl for pain, stiffness and inflammation of her hip and joints, but the vet reminded me that the medication was not without side effects. I would call the VCA Animal Hospital if my dog experienced black or tarry stools, which can indicate internal bleeding, a distressing adverse reaction of anti-inflammatory medications, vomiting blood, difficulty breathing, swelling of her lips, tongue or face and loss of appetite. Fortunately, these symptoms are rare.

I also learned from the vet at the VCA Animal Hospital that they are having success with certain supplements when it comes to how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems. Certain supplements such as Glucosamine and Chondroitin are proving beneficial to the cartilage and joints of dogs. The dosage of these supplements is based on the dog’s body weight. Diet also plays an important role in how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems. Dog food containing Omega 3 fatty acids has shown to be effective in reducing the inflammatory process. Massage therapy also has its benefits when it comes to how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems. The benefits of massage are the same whether the recipient of the massage is a dog or a human. Some benefits of massage include increase of blood flow to the affected area and decreasing pain and stiffness that is all to common in dogs with hip and joint problems. The bed the dog sleeps on also can help him relieve any joint pain. Going for orthopedic dog beds, usually with thick foam helps relieves pressure on specific joints for the dog. You can read orthopedic dog bed reviews on

Another very important component in the care and treatment of dogs with hip and joint problems is exercise. This may seem contradictory at first, since one of the most common symptoms of dogs with hip and joint problems is exercise intolerance. It is important to start exercising the dog slowly, but consistently. Exercise improves flexibility, decreases pain, and improves blood flow. It also maintains weight. Excessive weight on dogs puts stress and strain on their already painful hips and joints. Maintaining a normal weight for their breed can even prevent dogs from getting hip and joint problems in the first place. Too many calories and overfeeding a dog can cause them to grow rapidly which in itself is a risk factor for hip problems and osteoarthritis, especially in large dog breeds. It is important to stop exercising your dog if he or she looks like she is in pain and then call the vet right away.

Thankfully, my dog Meadow is much better now. She finished her prescription of Rimadyl and has been eating dog food that contains Omega 3 fatty acids, Glucosamine and Chondroitin, which I believe, has helped her hip and joint problems improve. She’s back to her old self again. As for Jeff, our very own “Beethoven”, he thankfully remains free from hip and joint problems at this time, although he is starting to slow down slightly as he gets older. I will continue to monitor him for any problems with his hips and joints though, and take him to the vet at the first sign of anything amiss. He also has started his own exercise and diet regime in hopes of preventing any future hip and joint problems that might come his way. We also pencil him in regularly for his massages.

Searching For Dog Beds for Big Dogs

If you have furry friends running around the house by day, chances are they are also taking over your bed at night. Although it may seem cute and affectionate, don’t let your dogs get too cozy and accustomed to sharing your bed. Pet owners are prone to having difficulties sleeping because of a dog that refuse to get out of their beds, particularly big stubborn ones. Buying dog beds for big dogs is a very important investment not only because it can give you a peaceful slumber, most importantly, it provides a number of health benefits for your furry pals.


Smelly Dog Issues

If you have an especially large dog, you can’t expect it to sit at a corner all day. Big dogs are robust, playful, and full of energy so they will always go out and play. Look forward to allergens, wet dog smells, dusts, and mud stains if you allow your dogs take over your bed. Fortunately, there are cedar filled dog beds for big dogs, especially made for your lively, carefree pets. These types of beds help keep your dog’s body odor at bay. However, if your dogs are a little too sensitive to cedar, you can opt for a 100% waterproof Nanopore fabric bed cover, which also serves as a barrier against mites and fleas. Likewise, there are also environmentally friendly dog beds made of organic cotton and fleece if you are an earth-conscious individual.

Your Dogs Need Space

Dogs also want some alone time at some place they can always come back to, just as you do. Corner dog beds for big dogs are a great option to make most of unused space, especially when the room is a little undersized.

Big Dogs Have Big Needs

Big dogs have big hearts, and despite their size, they are the gentlest of dogs. Unfortunately, big dogs live shorter and are more susceptible to certain health concerns such as arthritis, joint pains, hip and elbow dysplasia, etc. It is advisable that you buy high quality orthopedic dog beds for big dogs, particularly for the elderly ones. Orthopedic beds have special features that will suit dogs with specific needs. These beds in general are thick and very comfortable. An orthopedic memory foam bed is a popular choice for elderly dogs because its foam conforms to your dog’s shape while providing optimum support and comfort.

Relieves Anxious Dogs

Big dogs also get scared and restless from time to time, no matter how fierce they appear to be. Anxious dogs can find relief when they have their own secured place to run off to. Nesting beds and cave beds are two good choices: these types of beds help your dog feel secure as it envelops your dog with warmth, comfort, and privacy. Dogs just love the feeling of burying themselves.


You have to be a little more meticulous when buying dog beds for big dogs. Big dogs can be a little more destructive compared to smaller breeds, especially when they get bored. It is very important that you select a high quality dog bed, considering how much your pet spends time there. Aside from taking note of your dogs’ personalities and specific needs, you also have to remind yourself that dog beds for big dogs takes up more space in your house.

Dealing with suppliers 101.docx

Suppliers are you amongst your first customers in any type of establishment. You need to own the entire know how on how to deal with suppliers. They can ruin your day, if you don’t know how to operate with them. There are three phases in dealing with suppliers.

Phase 1: Contacting your supplier:

  • Emailing your supplier is a good idea. Nevertheless, contacting by phone is the better option. It is more personal and tells the buyer, you are invested into this deal.
  • Having one reliable buyer is nice. However having multiple options is perfect. You wouldn’t want to witness the difficulty of makeshift arrangement in the hindsight.
  • Supplier needs your business. Be confident and act professional throughout the deal. Be confident when clarifying your doubts, even if it’s very obvious.

Phase 2: Learn about your supplier:

  • Determine if the supplier has or can get the product you want.
  • Ask if they can label the product with your brand.
  • Know how the custom labeling works with your supplier.
  • Understand minimum order quantity and different price tiers on quantity.
  • Ask how long it would take for the supplier to get the products shipment-ready.
  • Ask them about the setup process involved legally and personally. In some cases, you need a reseller license.

Phase 3: Payment details:

  • Clearly understand how payment works with your supplier. Don’t choose a supplier who demands hard cash.
  • Get in detail specifications of product and packaging. Have it drafted officially.
  • Get design from your designer and send it to supplier.
  • Wait for supplier to prepare product completely.
  • Preferably make supplier agree to FBA payment method.

Take action…

Now it’s time to take action. Contact every supplier in your list. Talk on the phone and arrange meet-ups. Complete the groundwork like a professional reseller. Invest in finding a reliable supplier for long term.