Posted on: 18 July 2016Share
Your aging cat has pain and inflammation in their joints. They have difficulty jumping up onto the sofa to be on your lap some days, because of the pain. Your veterinarian has recommended medication that can ease the inflammation and joint stiffness, but giving a cat a pill can be stressful for both you and your cat. Here are some other ways that you can help your feline companion to be comfortable in spite of their arthritis.
Place a heating pad under your cat's favorite spot to nap. Set the temperature to low and the pad will gently warm your cat's joints. This increases circulation and reduces the inflammation in the joints. You can leave the heating pad on low all of the time so it's available whenever your cat is in its spot. Keep any cords out of the way to discourage them from being chewed on by your cat. If you're uncomfortable leaving an electrical heating pad on all of the time, there are gel-filled pads that are warmed up in the microwave that you can use under the cat bed.
As it does in their human owners, massage helps to stimulate circulation in the joints of your cat. This reduces inflammation and pain to make your cat more comfortable. The pet massage therapist may use a heating pad to warm up your cat's joints before the treatment to increase the circulation and relax their muscles. The therapist can also show you how you can do some light massage of your cat's joints at home to help them be more comfortable between massage sessions.
Some veterinary clinics may offer alternative pet therapy in your area by having trained acupuncture therapists on their team. This treatment is used to increase circulation in your cat's joints and reduce inflammation. It also stimulates your cat's body to produce endorphins, a natural pain killer. Tiny needles are inserted just under the cat's skin around areas the practitioner knows as energy centers. These locations control the flow of energy through the body and the needles remove any blocks to this flow.
There are some dietary changes you can make for your cat that may give them some relief. Foods high in essential fatty acids reduce inflammation in the joints. The food supplements glucosamine and chondroitin help strengthen the damaged cartilage in your cat's joints. Talk with your veterinarian before making any diet changes to make sure that your cat is still getting the nutrition they need along with the helpful supplements.
Contact a center like Downing Center For Animal Pain Management to learn more.