Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Day 1318 - Dogs with arthritis

Sometimes the best medicine may just be the cheapest ...

Our thirteen year old Lab - "Maxwell TP the first"
(C) Deep Fried Fruit
Before I start please note, I am not a vet.  That said, we have been spending quite a bit of time with the vet now that Max the once-hip-gyrating-now-blind-and-arthritic-Lab is nearing his hundreds.

Maxwell TP the First is just about to turn thirteen. That's bloody old for a dog and puts him in his early 90s I guess.  If he can hold out for a another year or so he could well get a letter from the Queen.



If you have been reading this blog for that last thousand days or so you'll recall Max as being very happy, energetic and hip-gyratey.  You'll also remember that he is a flaming homosexual who is desperately in love with his Brokeback Mountain cowboy lover "Binny".  While they're still in love, they're both too old to be displaying their lust ... which we're quite relieved about.  Dog porn is very hard to explain to children and not the most appealing thing to watch over a cup of tea with your grandmother. 

You'll also know that Max is now fully blind.  He has a degenerative retinal disease which sent him blind over a twelve month period.  While it's somewhat disabling, he's had us all marveling at his brilliance and ability to adjust. He has also had us wincing in pain as he runs into things, and laughing when he stands smiling and wagging at a brick wall thinking he's looking at us through the window.

Max the blind Lab
(C) Deep Fried Fruit
The thing that had been bothering him more than his blindness though (and which is probably the reason he's lost his hip gyrating mojo) is his arthritis.  He has arthritis in his hips, but what gives him the most grief is the arthritis on his front legs.  See that picture of him in his glasses ... can you see the discolouration on his front legs around the "elbow"? That's where he was constantly licking himself to try and relieve the pain.  That colour is his pain spots.

So we took him to the vet and for a year he was on a $230 a month medication (eeek!) which gave him some relief, but we found he was still panting in pain and over cleaning his fore quarters.  We returned to the vet earlier this year and (because of the cost of the drugs) we asked for an alternative. They gave us what they called a "third generation" medication which was "old technology" and could mess with his gut. Well, that it did ... he lost control of his "gut" (and his butt) all through our house.  So we went back again and this time they prescribed good old fashioned human Panadol. Are you serious? We could have been giving him 90 cent home-brand paracetemol all this time?  Yes.  But apparently dogs don't like the taste ... the expensive stuff has a nice doggie taste. To which I replied "he's a Labrador!" He eats chicken poo, underpants, sprinkler systems, cow poo, children's toys, rotting rabbit carcass and even Brussel sprouts (seriously ... what dog eats Brussel sprouts?). So anyway, now Max the beautiful-blonde-blind-Lab is feeling on top of the world as we give him 3/4 of a Panadol twice a day. That amount was prescribed by vet in accordance with Max's weight.

I don't know if you can see it or not .... but that photo way up top of him walking around on Mother's Day ... see the spots on his front legs? No where near as dark. He hasn't licked his front legs in two months!!

So there you have it.  Panadol for dogs. It worked for us ...

Note: Do NOT give Pandadol to cats. It will kill them.

Do you have an aging pet?

What tips and tricks do you have for their health?

Tahlia and Max on Mother's Day
(C) Deep Fried Fruit

Darby and Max a couple of months ago
(C) Deep Fried Fruit

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17 comments :

  1. No pets for us (we killed all the sea monkeys - TWICE) but I remember as a kid quite clearly, those panicked trips to the vet...Nothing as precious as an aging family pet...

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  2. Oh this is good to know. Our chocolate lab is ten and just starting to show signs of slowing down. He's my baby, so anything to help him when the time comes.
    PS Max is gorgeous!

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  3. How awesome, look at him in that top photo! Those lick spots have cleared right up. What's the go with this vet business selling crap we dont need!!

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  4. I am just off to take my 10 year old staffy for an arthritis injection!! Not quite as expensive as what you were quoted and so far in 2 weeks has been very effective!! We have a labrador as well I laughed so hard at your labradors eat anything as they do!! Mine eats nappies, the other dogs poo, cat poo, you name it really!!
    Apparently there are some natural alternatives for arthritis which I have been meaning to look into.

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  5. Snap, sort of, we have an ancient, blind cat who's got terrible arthritis and is on meds for that and for high blood pressure. He really is on his last legs. But no panadol for him. Glad you found something that helps and is a bargain.

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  6. Awww, that must be such a relief for you to see he's not in as much pain. I just want to give him a big cuddle! Found you on Essentially Jess IBOT. Cheers, Alison from Undertendollars

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  7. He is obviously loved very much! I cannot believe they didn't tell you about the 90c panadol as 1st option!! We don't have pets at the moment but the kids have hit the age now where they are constantly asking for a dog. I think with the love you all give Max he won't be going anywhere for a while :)

    Kell @Mad Mummas

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  8. We only ever had cats when I was a kid, we are not a dog family really, and my husband and I have had a couple of guinea pigs and lots of birds. The guinea pigs were pretty good but there were a couple of rather expensive trips to the vet for mute infestations and fighting injuries (male guineas love to fight each other and don't hold back!). We are down to one guinea now and once Skeleton leaves us we'll probably just stick with the birds until the munchkins start begging us for more pets!

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  9. Thank you for this. Our toy poodle has an issue with her hip and major issues with her mouth/teeth. When she is in pain, we feel helpless because there is nothing we can do. But, apparently there is. Next time we will roll with the Panadol and see how it works for us.
    Oh and if you do get a letter from the Queen, please share it with us :)
    Becc @ Take Charge Now

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  10. I had to laugh about him eating everything, so why would panadol bother him lol. That's great that it helps him live in comfort, gorgeous old dog :)

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  11. That must be very sad and hard to watch, we had old dogs and it broke my heart seeing them limp around, and suffer with arthritis pain.
    I'm sure the cuddles help x

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  12. Thanks for the tip. My daughter has a beautiful lab/kelpie, he's chocolate colored. My mum has inherited him as her dad, who owns him, is overseas. Chocolate Charlie is young thank goodness. Mum also nursed my sister's dog, an Airedale until he passed, and that was very sad, as he was inbred and had a lot of unnecessary ailments; then there was my dog ernie who she also inherited and he lived till he was 18, now he was a trooper. I'm so glad yrs is not in pain now, what a great discovery.

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  13. Panadol! Sounds like the best option for everyone - he sure looks cute in those sunnies xx

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  14. We have a orgeous dog who has been been diagnosed with Wobblers. His medication is quite expensive as well. We went to the vet yesterday and will be going again in a couple of weeks. Thanks so much for posting this - I'll definitely be asking about the Panadol option for pain relief. I hate seeing pets in pain.

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  15. Beautiful Max! We had a golden lab when I was little, and she struggled with arthritis too.
    We lost our 13 year old 3-legged cat last year, they really do become a huge part of the family.

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  16. Oh, Leanne...Max is just gorgeous! Our dog Samson died 5 years ago and he's still so very close to my heart. I think he always will be.

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  17. We have a dog also which is getting old-almost 9 yrs old and we are finding lumps/growths on her shoulder and tail. She is not in pain at the moment but will remember the panadol.

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