We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

Should I Exercise My Pet With Arthritis?

If your pet has arthritis it does not necessarily mean that they no longer require exercise. In fact, staying active can actually help your pet manage the symptoms of arthritis.

Your Veterinarian can help you design an arthritis management program for your pet that will address his individual needs.  With the right combination of medication, supplements, diet and exercise your pet can continue to lead an active happy life.

Tips for keeping your dog active:

  • Light exercise such as walking or swimming will help strengthen muscles, keep ligaments and tendons flexible and increase blood circulation to joints.
  • 30 minutes of exercise per day is recommended. Even if it is separated into numerous small walks a day. Those minutes all count.
  • In the warm summer months, swimming is a great exercise that keeps weight and pressure off of those sore joints and prevents sudden movements.
  • Give your dog a few minutes of slow walking warm up to start moving easier.  Remember to keep the exercise to low impact activities.
  • Cool downs are also important for them after a walk. When you are close to the end of your walk slow your pace just a bit. Give her heart rate time to slow down and get those muscles to slowly relax again.
  •  Did you know massage can also help with stiffness and muscle pain that can be associated with arthritis? There are many massage techniques that can help your pet feel better, increase circulation and alleviate soreness.
  • Acupuncture is also an alternative therapy that can be helpful.  At Mission Ridge Animal Hospital, we have Dr. Wilson who provides this treatment.  Please call with any questions you may have.

Caution signs:

Be careful not to over exert your pet. Excessive panting, unusual gait or limping are signs to stop exercising and consult your Veterinarian. Over exertion can harm and injure your pet so be sure to stick to the program your Veterinarian provided.

What about my cat?

Cats can also get arthritis and exercise is also important for them too though it can be more of a challenge.

  • Entice them to play on the ground with a toy.
  • Purchase a harness for your cat. They are available at most pet stores and it is a great way to safely take your cat in your yard for a supervised short walk.
  • Place his food and water dishes in a separate area in the house away from their kitty litter box. This will encourage him to walk a little further.
  • Swimming, unfortunately, may not be appealing to most cats.
  • Avoid toys or games that encourage jumping which can be harmful to arthritic joints.
  • You can also try massage techniques on your cat. Ask your Veterinarian to show you how.

Along with eating a well-balanced diet and keeping a healthy weight, exercise can be an important part of managing your pets’ arthritis. With a program approved by your Veterinarian and frequent monitoring, your pet can lead a long happy life despite having arthritis.

It is also a great way to keep ourselves active….by ensuring our pets get their exercise… we get ours too!

Written by Debra Briton, RVT

I took my dog to multiple vets for her skin condition before I called mission ridge. From the first appointment…

Kevin Green

Staff are professional and friendly. The vets are the best here.

Katherine Baronasky

I have taken my little yorkie here for the last 11 years he has owned me. ;o) I highly recommend…

T.a. Ohki

As always MRAH is the best vet clinic and all of our fur babies will continue to see the Vet…

Daryl Daniels

'Pickle' had a great first visit ! Very friendly clinic

Stephanie Gruhle


August is Food Awareness Month

During August and September, we are focusing on pet nutrition.

Read More
See All Articles

COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Wednesday, March 18, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a "closed-door" policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 780-458-3833. We will take a history of your pet from outside of your car, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. We will then return to your vehicle with your pet to discuss our recommended treatment plan.

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time.

3. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday to Friday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Saturdays 9:00 - 2:00 pm and closed on Sundays.

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the clinic. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment from your vehicle.

5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

6. Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our jobs. We have taken these measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid, and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

Your dedicated team at Mission Ridge Animal Hospital