A Dog Owners Guide to Joint Supplements for Dogs
As dogs age, it’s not uncommon for them to develop joint pain from movement disorders like arthritis. This painful disorder can cause discomfort, stiffness, and difficulty with mobility.
Fortunately, there are many joint supplements available that can help alleviate these symptoms and improve your dog’s Quality of Life.
In this consumer guide, we’ll take a look at the different types of joint supplements for dogs, how they work, and what to look for when choosing the best one for your furry friend.
Types of Joint Supplements for Dogs
There are several different types of joint supplements for dogs, including:
- Glucosamine – Glucosamine is a natural compound that is found in the cartilage of animals. It works by promoting the production of new cartilage and lubricating the joints, which can help reduce inflammation and improve mobility. Unlike NSAIDS, glucosamine has proven safe for long-term use, so a joint supplement containing glucosamine can be helpful as an early intervention for dogs predisposed to osteoarthritis, as well as a treatment for dogs suffering from progressive joint damage.
- Chondroitin – Chondroitin is another natural compound found in the cartilage of animals. It works by preventing the breakdown of cartilage and reducing inflammation. Often used in conjunction with the supplement glucosamine, chondroitin is found in animal cartilage and has numerous benefits, including helping with osteoarthritis and keeping cartilage healthy and joints mobile. Looking for a natural source? Chondroitin is found in meat gristle and beef cartilage, but supplements have higher doses than meat sources. Another source of chondroitin are green-lipped mussels (below), which also have anti-inflammatory properties when added to a dog’s food.
- MSM – MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is a natural sulfur compound that is found in many foods. It works by reducing inflammation and supporting the production of collagen, which is important for healthy joints.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids – Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fatty acids that are found in fish oil and other sources. They work by reducing inflammation and improving joint mobility.
- Hyaluronic Acid – Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance that is found in the body. It works by lubricating the joints and reducing inflammation.
- Turmeric – Turmeric is a spice that contains a compound called curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties. It works by reducing inflammation and improving joint mobility.
- Boswellia – Also called Indian frankincense, Boswellia is an herbal extract taken from the bark of the Boswellia serrata tree. As Boswellic acids have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, boswellia is used in Asian and African folk medicine. It’s believed to treat chronic inflammatory illnesses like rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis and may even help prevent cartilage loss.
- Green Lipped Mussel – An extract derived from green-lipped mussels, native to New Zealand, is another proven joint supplement ingredient for dogs. Green Lipped Mussel contains beneficial nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals which have natural anti-inflammatory and joint-protecting properties. Studies have shown that combined with glucosamine and chondroitin, it can help decrease pain and preserve joint function.
- CBD (Cannabidiol) Oil – Originating from the cannabis plant, CBD oil has anti-inflammatory properties. When administered orally or added to your dog’s food, it can decrease inflammation, reduce pain (including back and joint pain), slow premature aging caused by oxidative stress, and even fight cancer and control seizures, anxiety, and nausea. It can also improve your dog’s stomach issues. The oil, now legal in the U.S. and Canada, is readily available — give Canine Support Formula from K9 Medibles a try!
How Joint Supplements Work
Joint supplements work by providing the body with the nutrients it needs to support healthy joint function. Glucosamine and chondroitin, for example, are key components of cartilage, which is the tissue that cushions the joints. By providing the body with these nutrients, joint supplements can help promote the production of new cartilage and reduce inflammation, which can lead to improved joint function and mobility.
By providing these supplements regularly, we can help alleviate discomfort, improve flexibility, and enhance our dogs’ Quality of Life, allowing them to stay active, agile, and pain-free as they age.
MSM and hyaluronic acid also work by reducing inflammation and supporting the production of healthy joint tissue. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce inflammation throughout the body, which can help alleviate joint pain and stiffness. Turmeric works by inhibiting the production of enzymes that cause inflammation, which can also help reduce joint pain and stiffness.
What to Look for When Choosing a Joint Supplement for Your Dog
When choosing a joint supplement for your dog, there are several factors to consider. Here are some things to look for:
1. Quality Ingredients – Look for joint supplements that contain high-quality ingredients that are backed by scientific research. Ideally, you want to choose a supplement that contains natural, high-quality ingredients that are safe and effective to have the best chance of relieving joint pain and maintaining healthy joints.
2. Dosage – Make sure you choose a joint supplement that provides the right dosage for your dog’s weight and size. If the dosage is too low, it may not be effective, and if it’s too high, it could cause side effects. Follow the dosage instructions provided on the supplement packaging. Some supplements will have you start your dog at a higher dosage initially and taper down.
3. Form – Joint supplements come in a variety of forms, including tablets, chews, powders, and liquids. Choose a form that your dog will be willing to take and that is easy to administer.
4. Cost – Joint supplements can vary in price, so it’s important to choose one that fits your budget. However, keep in mind that the most expensive option isn’t always the best, and the cheapest option may not be effective.
5. Brand Reputation – Choose a joint supplement from a reputable brand that has a good reputation for producing high-quality, effective supplements.
6. Taste & Smell – Most dogs will readily eat supplements that come in the form of a soft chew or treat. Other supplements may be in a pill form that you’ll have to administer. Pill-hiding treats or other soft foods your dog really enjoys, like cheese, can help hide pill-form supplements.
Final Thoughts for Dog Owners
Daily joint supplements for dogs play a crucial role in ensuring their overall health and well-being. As our canine companions age, they become more susceptible to joint-related issues such as arthritis, stiffness, and decreased mobility.
Joint supplements, enriched with beneficial ingredients like glucosamine, chondroitin, and natural Green Lipped Mussel, can help support joint health, reduce inflammation, and promote cartilage repair.
Just like humans, proactive care and preventive measures are vital in maintaining the vitality and longevity of our loyal companions, making daily joint supplements an essential part of their wellness routine.
Curtis has been passionate about the health and welfare of animals since his first dog rescue.
After studying Sports Medicine & Biology at the University of Oregon, Curtis went on to excel in a career of Clinical Nutrition, later owning a health care supplement company serving private-practice physicians.
Known for his expansive knowledge of natural health and alternative medicine, Curtis believes that natural plant-based therapies can be applied to veterinary animal care which led him to study the science of Cannabinoid Medicine. His expertise in Functional Medicine led him to formulate a unique hemp-based canine care product, Canine Support Formula, fulfilling a dream to combine natural pet-care strategies with the new therapeutic potential of medical cannabis.
In reverence for his own dog, Parker, Curtis has dedicated his company–K9 Medibles–to improving the health and longevity of all dogs.
To learn more about Curtis and how K9 Medibles can help your dog, click HERE.