Keeping Your Dog Happy, Healthy and Pain-Free

What kind of things do you do to keep your canine companion happy and healthy? You probably take them on walks, maybe play fetch or toss around a frisbee or tug on a rope toy, feed them food that’s good for them and take them for regular visits to the vet, right? Of course you do! Do you know how to tell when they’re in need of a canine orthotic device or a knee brace, though? Can you tell if they are in pain? Do you know what to do in that situation?

What Are Canine Orthotic Devices and Knee Braces?

Maybe you’ve seen your dog limping. Maybe you’ve noticed them moving a little more slowly than usual, or having trouble getting to their feet. Chances are, if you’ve noticed these things happening with your pal, you’ve taken them to the vet to see what’s going on. Perhaps the vet has made recommendations for a nutritional supplement for their joints or for a canine orthotic device or canine knee brace. It’s common to wonder where exactly one might procure such things. The supplements are pretty easy: you can find them at most pet stores or fill a prescription your vet writes. Where, you might wonder, are you going to find an orthotic device or knee brace for your pup, though?


Here at Specialized Pet Solutions we’re committed to providing innovative solutions for your canine companion. We work to ensure your best buddy is fitted with a device so comfortable, so customized to their form that they barely notice it. We want to help you keep your dog in as great condition as we can for as long as possible. Our solution involves highly customized braces and orthotic devices made specifically for your dog: devices as one-of-a-kind as they are. 

Seeing Our Animals in Pain is Incredibly Difficult

We know that your animal friend just wants to make you happy —  so they may have been hurting longer than you know. We don’t mention this because we want you to feel poorly about it — it’s tough to communicate with animals when we don’t all speak the same language! We only mention it because it is essential that when you do begin to suspect that your dog is injured or showing signs of being in pain, you get them to the veterinarian as immediately as possible.

 

Before you go to the vet, or on your way there, take a moment or two to write down the answers to some key questions:

How long have you noticed this_ 

How long have you noticed this? 

progressively worsen over time_

Is this something you’ve seen progressively worsen over time?

because they may be in pain_ 

Does it seem to hurt when you gently pat certain areas, or do they shy away from pets because they may be in pain?

forelegs or hindlegs_ 

Is your pooch favoring one paw over the other in their forelegs or hindlegs?

not eating or having “accidents”_

Is your dog exhibiting any other signs of things being “not right” such as not eating or having “accidents”?

specific incident and what are the specifics if so_

Is this related to a specific incident and what are the specifics if so? Date, what happened, how did it happen, etc.

These are all good things to bring to your vet’s attention when you bring in your best buddy, so having the answers prepared ahead of time is helpful. If you have a younger dog, you may think they don’t need orthotic support or require any kind of canine brace, that something else must be wrong. Well, unfortunately, this simply isn’t always true. Every single dog has its own individual set of needs, and orthotic issues, while often seen in older animals, can crop up at any age. 

 

If you think your dog may benefit from an orthotic support or knee brace, raise that concern with your vet right away. Prepare a list of questions you may have for them in advance with regards to a canine orthotic support, a canine orthotic device, a canine knee brace, or any other kind of inquiry related to a dog orthotic support, device, or brace.

How to Know If Your Dog Needs Orthotic Support

It can be difficult to tell if your dog needs orthotic support specifically; what you should be on the lookout for are indicators that your pup is in pain. Various indicators can arise from dogs when they are in pain including, but not limited to:

 

  • Trembling or shaking. You might assume your pet is cold, or just has a little shiver if it isn’t chilly outside, but they will often tremble when they are in pain. This is because muscle tremors can be indicative of anything from poisoning to stress from a fracture to a torn ligament — often things you can’t see from the outside or know to look for if you aren’t a veterinarian.

  • Agitation signals. When dogs can’t calm down, it’s often because they’re in pain. If your best bud just can’t get comfortable, is pacing back and forth repetitively, or is having trouble sleeping, this is a sign that they are in pain.

  • Panting heavily, or altered breathing otherwise. A dog’s panting is normal. If a dog that hasn’t been exercising is panting heavily, though, that isn’t normal. And if their breathing is really shallow and they are not taking deep breaths, that’s not normal, either. All of these are signs that they could be in pain.

  • Problems with mobility. Limping and stiffness are some of the more obvious signs of pain that your dog may show; some of the lesser-known ones are a reduced interest in playtime or exercise, or not being as active as they usually are.

  • Changes in their posture and body alignment. If your dog exhibits swelling in the paws, legs, or face there are a number of issues it could be, from inflammation to cancer. When they are in pain, many dogs will have a very rigid and hunched stance. Others will assume the “prayer” position to try to stretch their bellies out to alleviate abdominal pain.

  • Exhibiting antisocial or aggressive behavior. If your dog exhibits behavior changes such as not greeting you at the door, avoiding you, or becoming aggressive towards you, that’s an immediate red flag for concern. Any noticeable change in behavior should be cause for a visit to the V-E-T.

  • Being louder. Many dogs will become more vocal when they are in pain. Lots of yelping, growling, snarling, even howling, especially if it’s unlike them, are often indicators that your baby is hurting.

  • Any kind of change in their eating, drinking, or sleeping habits. Any major changes should be cause for concern, especially if they involve food, water or sleeping. They may or may not be in pain, but something may be very wrong with them, and it necessitates a trip to the veterinarian.

  • Unnecessary or excessive grooming. Dogs who lick their paws constantly do so to soothe themselves, usually because they are hurting and they don’t know what else to do. Do your best friend a favor and take them to the vet.

 

As you can see, there are a wide variety of indicators that your canine companion might be in pain. Do your best bud a favor and take them to the vet if something seems like it’s not right. 

Orthotic Support and Brace Options

At Specialized Pet Solutions, we design and fabricate custom products to meet the needs of your pet’s specific problem. We offer three solutions for canine orthotic care:

The Carpal/Wrist Brace for Dogs

 

This is a brace used specifically to address issues stemming from hyperextension, which can affect younger dogs as equally as it can more senior dogs. In more senior canines the degeneration of ligaments can lead to hyperextension. In younger canines, hyperextension typically happens because of a fall from a substantial height or a significant trauma otherwise. 

 

Wrist or carpal braces are used for several reasons:

 

  • To address hyperextension and provide support while the injury heals
  • To accommodate and support various angular deformities
  • To manage the healing of fractures

 

As you can see, these types of support can also be helpful in helping a dog who has a deformity that involves the wrist. 

The Hock, Tarsus, and Achilles Stifle Brace for Dogs

 

Dogs have five different ligaments that can be ruptured, torn, or partially torn that would necessitate this brace for their support and recovery. This makes us glad we only have one Achilles tendon! The brace for your dog’s Achilles tendon (area) injury is, as all of our products are, custom-molded and manufactured to fit your dog specifically. You can tell that your dog has a rupture or injury to any of these tendons because instead of walking around on their “tippy toes” as dogs tend to do, they will walk about flat-footed. This brace can help them:

 

  • With post-operative care of surgery to repair complete Achilles rupture
  • Correct hyperextension/partial rupture
  • Support angular deformities
  • Assist with fracture management

 

Again, this brace may be able to assist with the accommodation of any deformities in the area as well.

 

It’s worth noting that our Achilles stifle brace is completely unique in taking stress off of the Achilles area to allow utmost healing and promote a strong recovery. Many stifle braces exist, but only Specialized Pet Solutions’ Achilles Stifle Brace provides support directly to the tendon that involves the complete alleviation of stress from the area. This allows for a more complete relaxation for your pet, as well as increased chances of a full recovery if an injury is involved (as is typically the case.)

The Stifle/CCL Knee Brace

 

This knee brace is designed to help your best bud recover from a variety of knee problems such as a full CCL rupture, partial CCL rupture, or luxating patella, amongst others. Your dog may enjoy a faster recovery and greater range of motion with the implementation of this brace, especially following any type of surgery to the area. 

 

As with all of our products, we custom-create the knee brace for your dog and your dog only.

Why Us?

There are a number of companies offering similar services to ours. We should emphasize that we work as closely as necessary with you and your veterinarian, if necessary, to ensure that we create a product that works perfectly for your canine companion. We understand how important your dog is, how much a member of your family they are. And we put all of our effort into ensuring that we create products that are going to feel, after a brief breaking-in period, like they aren’t even there. We also want these devices to allow your furry friend to enjoy a greater quality of life and a pain-free life, or at least a substantial reduction in the pain they experience.

 

There are a wide range of canine orthotic devices such as supports and braces out on the market, but we are one of the few who provide a truly customized experience, so that the orthotics your dog uses are created for their use and their alone. We use a casting kit that is shipped out to you the same day you place your order for your dog’s support or brace. It will come with everything you need to cast your pet as well as instructions and information about how to contact us.

 

If you’re not comfortable casting your pet yourself, we suggest that you make a vet appointment to have their assistance with this important process. You or your veterinarian can contact us about the process anytime with any questions or concerns. We also offer a wide variety of colors and patterns you can choose from, so after casting your dog you pick your color and send the kit back to us. We then begin the process of creating the orthotic based specifically on your dog’s cast.

 

If you look through our gallery you will see a lot of smiling faces on a lot of animals wearing various orthotic supports and braces. As you can see, the animals we’ve had the privilege to work with are enjoying a great quality of life and having fun just being themselves and getting used to enjoying life again.

 

 

In Conclusion

We know you would never want your beloved dog to remain in pain for long, and we appreciate your commitment to your pet. We feel the same way about ours. That’s why we started Specialized Pet Solutions: because every pet deserves a pain-free existence. Contact us today with any questions, or check out our website for more information. We’re confident that we can assist you in resolving your pet’s orthotic problems with our innovative, expertly-manufactured products. 

 

We hope that you and your canine companion have many, many years of happy adventures and snuggles together. As animal lovers ourselves, we understand completely how much your furry friend means to you. And as the leader in providing custom made canine orthotic supports and braces we are thrilled to share the breadth and wealth of our experience and expertise with you and your dog. 

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