Osteoarthritis in Cats

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a common issue in domestic cats, but is often underdiagnosed. Unlike dogs, most cats do not undertake regular exercise and a reduction in mobility is often attributed to normal aging rather than pain or stiffness associated with disease. OA is commonly seen in the spine as well as the joints in cats, so the global term degenerative joint disease (DJD) is sometimes used instead of OA.

In healthy joints, a slippery tissue called cartilage cushions the ends of the bones in the joints. With OA, cartilage breaks down, causing pain and swelling. As OA gets worse, bone spurs can form and cause pain and joint damage. When this happens, your cat may prefer to sleep more, not jump as much or as high.

Is cat OA different than dog OA?

There are many reasons why diagnosing and treating OA in cats is more difficult than in dogs.

  • Cats are less likely to visit the veterinarian than dogs
  • Cats do not behave normally at the clinic
  • Pet parents have a hard time identifying OA in their cats
  • Cats are good at hiding pain and have a reputation for sleeping a lot
  • There are limited treatment options once diagnosis is made

The Warning Signs

Watching how your cat behaves around the house can help identify potential issues. Cats hide OA. This illustration shows examples of healthy versus arthritic behavior for you to uncover their secrets: 

Cat activity illustration

Help for Your Cats

For cats that may be at risk of OA, Glyde™ Mobility Chews are available in a specific formulation focused on cats. Glyde’s formulation consists of gluten-free, natural ingredients, and contains proven levels of three key components that work to promote joint health and maintain cartilage quality. Glyde for Cats also contains additional flavoring to make it even more appealing for cats. Glyde chews are easy-to-break, heart-shaped chews, with dosing that is convenient for all cats.