All About Joint Supplements For Dogs
Maintaining joint health is extremely important for dogs, as having joint problems as they age can severely impede your canine companion’s quality of life. There are a range of supplements available that can help with joint problems, whether as a preventative or a treatment. However, if your dog is suffering from a problem with his joints, your first port of call should always be your veterinarian.
Does My Dog Need Joint Supplements?
It’s hard to say whether or not most dogs need to be taking joint supplements. If your dog is already suffering from joint problems, supplements may help, but should be given under veterinary supervision. For currently healthy dogs, joint supplements may help to prevent future damage. This is particularly helpful if your dog does a lot of high impact exercise or if he is of a breed that is prone to suffering from joint issues, such as a Great Dane, St. Bernard or Rottweiler.
What are the Best Joint Supplements for Dogs?
Whether your dog is already suffering from arthritis, joint pain or other joint issues, or you just want to try to prevent them from occurring later in life, there are two main supplements that are though to be helpful: glucosamine and chondroition sulfate.
Glucosamine is a natural compound that’s made up of a sugar and an amino acid. Its function is to help the body to produce essential lubrication for the joints and to generally aid in maintaining healthy, functioning joints and cartilage. It also helps to rebuild damaged cartilage. A lot of research has been done into glucosamine, both for dogs and for humans. It’s generally considered one of the best supplements for dogs who are suffering from arthritis or other joint problems. In some cases, it may even be more effective than other veterinary treatments for arthritis, such as steroids and NSAIDs.
Chondroitin sulfate doesn’t just reduce pain from arthritis and other joint issues; it helps your dog’s body repair cartilage that is already damaged. It might also stop cartilage from breaking down prematurely and help lessen stress to the joints from impact. Studies have shown that chondroitin sulfate reduces joint pain by a significant amount. There are studies which suggest taking both chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine ultimately makes each of them more effective, but this isn’t considered to be accurate by all scientists.
Are There Any Other Supplements that are Good for My Dog’s Joints?
There are a handful of natural supplements that may help with joint issues in dogs. However, not much research has been done to prove their effectiveness, so they may or may not help in the long run. Boswellia is said to be helpful in treating arthritis and curcumin has anti-inflammatory properties that could aid a range of joint problems.
What’s the Correct Dosage to Give My Dog?
When giving your dog supplements, it’s important to make sure you’re feeding him the correct dosage. Of course, the appropriate dosage can vary depending on the weight of your dog. If you’re giving supplements that are specifically designed for canine consumption, they should have a dosage chart on the package. However, if you’re unsure, consult your vet to find the right amount to give your pup.
Lauren Corona is a freelance writer from merry old England. She specializes in writing about dogs and other critters. Lauren lives near Oxford, with her gorgeous Doberman, Nola. When she's not tapping away at the keyboard, you'll find her walking in the woods with Nola-dog, raising money for the Oxfordshire Animal Sanctuary, cooking vegan food, making zines and writing about herself in the third person.
More by Lauren Corona