When our furry family members get older, their joints begin to pay the price for miles of running, jumping and playing. A joyful lifestyle should not have to result in painful golden years. Luckily, there are ways to prevent this outcome, here’s how:
It comes as no surprise that larger dogs are more susceptible to arthritis than smaller pets. 75 pounds of labrador retriever bouncing around is going to take a heftier toll on joints than a petite chihuahua or your average tabby cat. With this in mind it is especially important to be proactive with joint supplements early with large breed dogs, however smaller dogs and cats can benefit, too.
In the midst of arthritis, joint supplements can still aid in improving comfort. However, other measures (NSAIDS, diet/exercise, physical therapy) may be necessary to adequately manage pain.
When picking a joint supplement, it is important to keep in mind what ingredients are included and what they do. Glucosamine HCl and chondroitin sulfate will be found in most supplements and are essential. Glucosamine is responsible for rebuilding of collagen (a protein in cartilage which separates bones in joints), while chondroitin is also found in cartilage and is responsible for water retention aiding in shock absorption. Other ingredients can include avocado soybean unsaponifiables (protect cartilage against structural changes associated with arthritis), Green Lipped Mussel (mechanism is unknown, however a study in 2013 has shown that it improves vertical motion in canines), and hyaluronic acid (found in joint fluid, loss of this is associated with arthritis). These three ingredients are still being researched to quantify their exact benefits.
|ProMotion for Medium Large Dogs (PetMed Express Inc., 2016).||Glucosamine HCl 700 mg, Manganese 10 mg, Zinc 2 mg, Ascorbic Acid 25 mg, Cysteine 25 mg.|
|Dasuquin with MSM (Nutramax Laboratories Veterinary Sciences Inc., 2016b).||Large Dogs: Glucosamine HCl 900 mg, 350 mg CS, 90 mg Avocado/Soybean Unsaponifiables, 800 mg MSM. Small Dogs: Glucosamine HCl 600 mg, 250 mg CS, 45 mg Avocado/Soybean Unsaponifiables, 400 mg MSM.|
|Glyco-Flex III Soft Chews (Vetri-Science Laboratories, 2016).||Glucosamine HCl 1000 mg, MSM 1000 mg, Green Lipped Mussel 600 mg, DMG 100 mg, dl-alpha Tocopheryl Acetate 50 IU, Calcium Ascorbate 30 mg, Ascorbic Acid 24 mg, Mg 10 mg, Grape Seed Extract 5 mg, L-Glutathione 2 mg.|
|TerraMax Pro Hip & Joint Supplement (TerraMax Pro, 2016).||1600 mg Glucosamine HCl, 1200 mg Chondroitin Sulfate, 1000 mg Opti-MSM.|
|Extend K9 Health Formula Joint Care (Extend Joint Care, 2016).||Glucosamine HCl 300 mg, MSM, Type II Collagen, and Ascorbic Acid 400 mg, other quantities not specified.|
|Pet Naturals Hip & Joint Tablets (Pet Naturals of Vermont, 2016).||750 mg Glucosamine HCl, 400 mg Chondroitin Sulfate, MSM 400 mg, Ascorbic Acid 100 mg, Magnesium Proteinate 5 mg.|
|Cosequin DS (Nutramax Laboratories Veterinary Sciences Inc., 2016a).||Glucosamine HCl 500 mg, Chondroitin Sulfate 500 mg, Manganese 3 mg.|
|Liquid Health K9 Glucosamine (Liquid Health Inc., 2016).||Glucosamine HCl 1600 mg, CS 1200 mg, MSM 1000 mg, Manganese Chelate 7 mg, Hyaluronic Acid 10 mg.|
These products are nutraceuticals and are not regulated by the FDA. Some of the products are regulated by the NASC (National Animal Supplement Council). Just like supplements for people not all are created equal and not all have what they claim to have in them. Be sure to research products that you may be interested in using and feel free to give us a call to help you decide if a certain product may benefit your beloved pet. We currently carry a trusted selection of joint supplement options including Cosequin, Dasuquin, ProMotion, and fish oil supplements.
Now that you are educated on the subject of joint supplements, you can feel confident in wielding the knowledge to make a great choice for your furry friend!
Bhathal, Angel et al. “Glucosamine and chondroitin use in canines for osteoarthritis: A review” Open veterinary journal vol. 7,1 (2017): 36-49.