For most of us, it is exciting to bring that puppy or that rescue dog home.
They are full of excitement to see their new home and full of energy to play all the time.
I have never met a dog that doesn’t love to play and please their Human pack leader.
Unfortunately, as a dog gets older they can suffer from many of the ailments that humans experience in their golden years.
Osteoarthritis is the leading cause of chronic pain in dogs and the quality of life, as well as a dog’s lifespan can be affected by this disease.
Does my dog have Arthritis(Osteoarthritis)?
How can you tell if you’re aging dog has Osteoarthritis?
Signs of arthritis can show up in some of the most common symptoms:
- Your dog takes longer to stand up after a nap or shows signs of stiffness.
- Change in muscle tone.
- Obvious changes in the way your dog sits down.
- Your dog does not want to go on regular walks anymore.
- Your dog sleeps more than he/she normally does.
- Your dog does not have the ability to jump anymore.
- Your dog does not greet you when you come home anymore.
The most common areas of your dog that arthritis will show up are the shoulder, hips, and the paws.
In all of these areas the dog will exhibit limping, favoring, licking, or not wanting to move or get up (or moving slowly than normal).
The two major categories of joint problems are developmental and degenerative.
With developmental problems, you have things like hip or elbow dysplasia where the joint does not develop correctly.
Degenerative problems are cruciate ligament problems where the ligament is degenerating over time and causing instability and secondary osteoarthritis.
The is the most common form of arthritis found in aging dogs today.
Much like the human, there are several treatments available today.
- If the dog is over-weight, having he/she loses unneeded weight will help in the joints as they will not have to support extra weight. So weight management and body condition are important.
- There are medications available in the form of dog joint supplements and dog joint pain relief. The dog joint pain relief provide anti-inflammatories and pain relievers. The dog joint supplements will provide some additives such as fish oils which help decrease inflammation and they can provide glucosamine/chondroitin. Glucosamine is a very popular treatment found on the market for both humans and your dogs.
- In extreme cases, surgery followed by physical therapy can be recommended and provided by your vet. This therapy can include underwater treadmills, ultrasound therapy, and electric stimulation.
Are Dog Joint Supplements Safe?
When picking out dog joint supplements for your pet, make sure you purchase your supplements are from reputable companies.
Most supplements are not controlled by the FDA.
A good way to check for ingredient quality, safety, and reliability is by doing thorough research on the company whose product you want to buy.
Things to consider when choosing dog joint supplements is whether the ingredients in the product were tested in clinical trials for their safety and efficiency in treating arthritis.
The Journal of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics does recommend that dog joint supplements are effective in treating your dog that has arthritis. This was concluded base on clinical test run on supplements available today.
Most common ingredients are meant to support joint cartilage health while others address lubrication issues with the synovial fluid in the joint.
Some herbal ingredients help reduce pain and inflammation of arthritis. It is important to read the ingredients and understand how they will interact with your dog before buying.
This will largely depend on the treatment you are seeking for your dog.
Usually when we talk about arthritis, the treatment of Glucosamine is most popular as it aids in the development and repair of cartilage in the joints.
Do to give your pet, cat or dog, arthritis medication that is designed and prescribed for human-beings. The dog or cat will not absorb or process these medications and some can be toxic to your pet.
What’s the Best Dog Joint Pain Relief
Before you pick a joint pain relief for your dog, you need to understand what is available and what type of treatment you want to administer to your dog.
These are these types of medication out:
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Your vet may need to prescribe one of the many non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, but a serum chemistry is recommended by your vet before starting these medications to detect any underlying conditions that may be made worse by these drugs. So discuss the best avenue of treatment with your vet.
Steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. These can have numerous side effects, as with starting a non-steroidal. Blood work prior to use is always recommended.
Therapy laser. Uses specific wavelengths of light that reduce discomfort and inflammation and accelerate wound healing. These can be very expensive!
Narcotics. These drugs may be needed if having trouble controlling the discomfort with other medications.
As you can see, these are very similar to human medications. I would suggest not going this route unless you have a very severe case with your dog’s arthritis or is highly recommended by your vet.
Most vet’s will recommend going the dog joint supplement route verse medication.
If your dog’s case is right, you go a more natural route in treating pain for you dog.
Several natural medication are available and below is a couple that I came across during my research that you might consider:
- Wide Spectrum Relief: Pain + Inflammation + Stiffness + Weakness + Sensitivity + Troubled Mobility
- Recommended For Joint and Mobility Pain + Hip Pain + Old Age + Injury + Joint Complaints of All Sorts!
- Safe, Natural, and Free from Negative Side-Effects.
- Thorne Research CurcuVET-SA150
- CurcuVET is a curcumin (turmeric) supplement dogs that helps reduce inflammation of the GI tract and joints; and protects the liver and kidneys from damage.
- Reduce inflammation throughout the body
- Provide potent antioxidant
How do I choose the right dog joint supplement
With such a great number of dietary supplements for dogs, it can be hard to choose the best one.
The consumer, as in everything they purchase for their dog, needs to read and understand the ingredients carefully.
The most common ingredients in dog joint supplements are chondroitin and glucosamine.
Both are structural components of healthy cartilage tissue, promote growth in cartilage, and meant to help with osteoarthritis pain.
Other popular ingredients are natural anti-inflammatories such as:
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids
- Vitamins C and E
These supplements may also include magnesium, calcium, and vitamin D to support a dog’s bone health.
Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound that is found in your dog’s system. It one of the more popular joint supplement ingredients you hear about today.
As your dog ages, the glucosamine level will drop and the natural protection that the dog’s body makes is deplenished.
This is why it is a good idea to supplement the dog’s diet with dog joint supplements during their golden years.
Glucosamine and Chondroitin are two key ingredients in almost all dog joint health and arthritis prevention and dog joint supplements.
It is the combination of these 2 compounds that form a great overall formula that can help to reduce your dog’s arthritis symptoms.
Please read the labels of any supplement you buy.
There have been some side effects that have been reported even though they are very rare occurrences.
The side effects can be:
- Allergy reaction
- Diabetes and blood sugar interactions
- Gastrointestinal Issues
- Liver or Kidney Problems
Most of these rare interactions mostly occur when the dog or pet has existing conditions such as diabetes or kidney problems.
Below is a few of the most popular and highly rated dog joint supplements:
- Pet Bounce is considered to be a natural homeopathic alternative to pain relievers.
- Pet Vitamin is a multi-vitamin product that is meant to support your dog’s health and immune system through a combination of vitamins, minerals, and the addition of some natural extracts.
- Nutramax Cosequin DS Pluswith MSM soft chews
- Glucosamine Chondroitin, MSM, Organic Turmeric Soft Chews
Dog joint supplements can come in several forms such as liquids, powder,and popular chews.
Natural Sources of Canine Glucosamine
Glucosamine is found in natural animal sources, including shellfish shells like lobster, shrimp and crab.
Some common animal food sources for glucosamine include chicken feet, beef trachea, and pork tails.
The substance is also found naturally in any cartilage-rich animal food.
Beef tracheas are a prime example and since it is cartilage, it contains 5% glucosamine.
Here’s a list of natural sources of glucosamine:
- Beef tracheas
- Chicken feet
- Pork tails
- Beef knuckle bones
- Shellfish shells
- Green lipped mussels
- Bone broth
Solutions: What will I buy? What will you buy?
Our dogs can experience problems with their joints for a lot of reasons. Joint problems can impact a dog’s ability to move around and cause a great deal of pain.
You can read my product review on this subject by pressing here!
Dog owners turn to dog joint supplements as a cheaper and safer alternative to conventional treatments for arthritis in dogs.
The Dog Joint Supplement I would recommend and will give to my dogs as they grow older are either of these two (highly rated by consumer reviews and close to natural):
- Nutramax Cosequin DS Plus with MSM soft chews
- Glucosamine Chondroitin, MSM, Organic Turmeric Soft Chews
Please remember. It is also important to include a healthy diet and plenty of exercise to go along with these supplements.
Dogs need exercise and love to go to the park!