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Old 01-23-2013, 01:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Question about osteoarthritis and pain meds

Otro has been on Metacam or Meloxicam for about 4-5 months now for severe pain in his hips. For the last few months he has been on Meloxicam but it is no longer working as well. He is getting stiff again and having difficulty going up and down stairs and exhibiting other symptoms that he had before the meds. We are getting an appointment with our vet to figure out his meds.
I just wondered if anyone on here could give me any ideas of meds that might be perscribed when metacam/meloxicam no longer works?

Also just recently when Otro walks, I have noticed that his back feet actually cross over each other instead of landing side by side like his normal stride. Has anyone else seen this happen?
Thanks so much for any input you might have. I haven't posted on here for a very long time so in case it would make much difference Otro just turned 6 years old and was diagnosed with osteo earlier this year.
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Sorry I have no advice for you but hopefully someone will come along later with some suggestions.
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Are you using glucosamine and is the vet injecting adequan?
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:36 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I agree with Jocoyn--ask about Adequan!

Adequan requires a commitment to do the loading dose (2 shots a week for 4 weeks), then maintain with shots every other week probably, but it helps the joints heal and build new cartilage instead of just covering up the pain. I honestly think it should be the first line of treatment for a lot of arthritic dogs because if it works, the results can be dramatic, and it's supposed to be very safe. For some reason, not a lot of vets seem to know about it -- my old vet never mentioned it as an option. I learned about it from this board, then found a younger, more progressive vet who had been using it successfully in his practice, who also did a very thorough ortho exam before prescribing it.

My 10-year-old senior went from moving slowly and having trouble getting up from his bed to wanting to jog again, and even putting his forepaws on my lap and standing up briefly with all his weight on his rear legs -- something he hasn't done in years. The change in him is amazing --- we're totally without NSAIDs in his treatment protocol now, and he's doing really well. We're using a combination of adequan maintenance shots, exercise, supplements, and a low dose of nightly gabipentin before bedtime.

For supplements, we are doing 4,000 mg of fish oil (we worked up to that) because it's a potent natural anti-inflammatory. We also add mixed tocopherol vitamin E, Ester-C, natural eggshell membrane, collagen II, and B-complex. My vet's theory is that my old guy's doing so well because the supplements are supporting the Adequan, and we keep him moving with his daily walks, and the multi-pronged approach consistently yields better results in his patients.

We tried just using NSAID pain meds for a short time before this, with my old vet. We got significant improvement, but not as much as we got with the multi-pronged approach, after fading away the NSAIDs.

Last edited by Magwart; 01-23-2013 at 09:38 PM.
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:29 AM   #5 (permalink)
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The Senior Dog
Has a lot of threads with some great information.

DogAware.com: Diet & Health Info for Man's Best Friend has good stuff, as does:
Pain, Arthritis, & Medications Pain in Dogs and Cats: Introduction and Basics
Pain in Dogs and Cats: Injuries, Mild Pain, Arthritis, First Aid
Pain in Dogs and Cats: Post-Surgery, Severe Pain
Adequan: A Near-Miracle for Dogs with Arthritis

There are also vets now who do pain management - Cornell has a service that any vet can call (and maybe pet owners too).

Good luck!
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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My old dog had the feet crossing thing. For him, it was a degenerative condition, not "just" arthritis. So pain meds made no difference.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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He is on a glucosamine supplement with chrondroitin and msm in it. I had not heard of adequan. I will definantly be checking into that though. What was the average cost of the adequan treatment?
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Old 01-24-2013, 09:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I use adaquan on my newfie cross. Seems to help. But I give him the injections. Vet showed me how, so now I order it online. It is a bit costly though but well worth it.
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Old 01-25-2013, 04:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Adequan is expensive. For 10 mls (2 5ml vials) you are spending 180$ at my day practice I work at. Larger dogs generally get 2-3 mls either weekly or bi-weekly if you're lucky. Weekly, that's a little over a month. Owners can give it at home if they feel comfortable or we just keep their prescription in the fridge and they come in once a week to have us do it (or again, bi-weekly). HOWEVER, it works WONDERS, so if you can afford the cost, I always recommend it.

If metacam isn't working, I recommend looking at rimadyl and potentially even tramadol for bad days. Talk with your vet, they will know which medication would be best to try next.
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Old 01-25-2013, 11:35 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Unfortunantly it sounds like adequan will be above our price limit. I will do some more looking into it though to see for sure.
Will be speaking to our vet more about it for certain. Hopefully we can come up with a plan that works out well. I am stressed about this all as I am so worried that I will lose Otro!
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