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Osteoarthritis and spondylosis in the dog


Osteoarthritis is a condition that occurs in a joint. A joint consists of bone parts that can move relative to each other. There is a layer of cartilage over those bone parts and there is joint fluid as a lubricantosteoarthritis dog (synovia) between. The cartilage is normally smooth and resilient and together with the synovia it forms a flexible and mobile joint. When there is osteoarthritis, the cartilage is no longer smooth and resilient, but rough and stiff. This causes an inflammatory reaction in the joint and the joint becomes painful and less flexible.

When a joint cannot move smoothly, a reaction will occur in this joint to compensate. The body tries to solve this problem itself by producing new bone, usually where the capsule attaches to the bone. In most cases, the diagnosis is made by taking an X-ray.


Osteoarthritis can develop in all joints of the body, including the joints of the back. We speak of spondylosis when new bone is formed between two vertebrae in response to the osteoarthritis. The new bone forms a kind of “bridge” between two vertebrae and the joint can no longer move. The spondylosis in itself does not have to be painful, but when especially the surrounding nerves are suppressed, pain arises. If this pressure becomes too great, paralysis can even occur.


Osteoarthritis and spondylosis are therefore the result of cartilage damage in the joint.
This damage can be caused by:

  • Trauma (e.g. after tearing of the cruciate ligaments in a knee)
  • Wrong and insufficient movement
  • Not properly hinging of a joint due to a hereditary abnormality (most known is hip dysplasia where the head does not fit nicely in the socket)
  • Inflammation in a joint where the cartilage is seen as foreign (rheumatism)
  • Wear as a result of a natural aging process in aged animals
  • Incorrect diet
  • Overweight


  • Start-up stiffness / start-up lameness
  • Hindquarters / lower back stiffness
  • Difficulty getting up
  • Want to walk less long
  • Indicate pain by, for example, putting a leg in a different position
  • The joints can widen visibly and feel harder
  • Difficulty with defecation and / or urination
  • Lose muscle mass
  • Slack
  • Resistance

Holistic vision

From a holistic point of view, we also look at osteoarthritis and spondylosis from a different angle. From acupuncture, the kidneys provide healthy bones and the spleen provide healthy and flexible joint fluid. If one of these two organs gets out of balance, joint problems can develop earlier.

There are many acupuncture points around the joints. Energy can be exchanged at those points. In particular, the penetration of energy is important here. Cold and wind can enter a joint and cause a cold and stiff joint. That is why these dogs often have more joint complaints in the winter. They have more trouble getting up and take longer to smooth out. The kidneys located in the area of the lower back are also very sensitive to cold, which further enhances the complaints that we see in wet and cold periods. That is why it is important to keep dogs with joint and / or kidney problems warm during cold periods.

Besides keeping warm, movement is very important, “rest rusts”. Movement ensures that the blood flow continues and the joints remain warm and supple.


These chronic pain complaints can only be treated symptomatically, because you can no longer do anything about the joint change and the associated osteoarthritis. By means of our treatments and medication, the process can be slowed downand the pain will be significantly less. The great advantage of this method of treatment is that painkillers are often no longer necessary or can be given in much lower doses.

The treatment and advice depend on the situation and symptoms, but can include, for example:

  • Acupuncture
  • Chiropractic
  • Osteopathy
  • Manual therapy
  • Gold beads implantation
  • Dietary Supplements
  • NSAIDs (pain reliever anti-inflammatory)
  • Orthopedic aids (braces)
  • Losing weight if you are overweight
  • Exercise advice
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