3 Things Potbellied Pig Owners Need To Know About Arthritis

It's common knowledge that people can get arthritis, a painful inflammatory condition that affects the joints, but your pet potbellied pig can also develop this painful joint condition. Here are three things potbellied pig owners need to know about arthritis.

Why do potbellied pigs get arthritis?

Potbellied pigs can develop arthritis for a number of reasons. It may occur as a natural part of the aging process. As your pig ages, their cartilage degenerates, leading to decreased cushioning around their joints. This type of arthritis is known as degenerative arthritis, and it's the same type that people can get.

Pigs can also get arthritis as a result of stress on their joints, which can happen if they're obese. Bacterial infections may also lead to arthritis; this is known as bacterial arthritis. Inflammation in the joints—which can occur as a result of an injury, like falling off something elevated—can also lead to arthritis. Your veterinarian will be able to tell you more about the cause of your pig's condition after examining them.

What are the signs of arthritis?

While you may think of arthritis as a disease of old age, it can happen to potbellied pigs at any age, so even young pigs should be monitored for signs of arthritis. You may notice that your pig is taking shorter steps than they usually do, which can mean that their joints hurt. Your pig may also seem reluctant to walk or run around your house, and they may refuse to get up at all. Another sign of arthritis is that your pig is resting on their knees, instead of standing normally. If you notice these signs, your potbellied pig needs veterinary attention right away.

How do vets treat arthritis?

Treatment is essential because without treatment, your pig's joints will become damaged. This damage will lead to problems like lameness, chronic pain and joint fusion, and in severe cases, euthanasia will be required. Your vet can help your pig avoid these problems with medications.

If bacteria are responsible for the arthritis, antibiotics can clear up the problem. If your pig's arthritis was caused by other problems, like old age or an injury, anti-inflammatory medications can help ease the swelling and reduce their discomfort. If your pig is obese, your vet will put them on a diet to help them lose weight safely and take pressure off of their joints.

If your potbellied pig is showing signs of arthritis, take them to a vet like Honolulu Pet Clinic LLC The before the problem can get any worse.