Dog Arthritis Supplements: How Will They Help Your Pet?
Does your dog express difficulty getting up, jumping or lying down? Does it seem like they are in some sort of pain? Has it ever occurred to you that your furry companion might be suffering from arthritis?
This is a common condition found in older dogs, while some breeds are more prone to it than others. Basically, this alignment affects cartilage, a protective layer between two joins. Once this layer is damaged or destroyed, bones start creating friction, which leads to pain and immobility.
Although there is no cure for dog arthritis, you can prevent this condition, minimise symptoms and improve your pet's quality of life by giving your canine arthritis supplements.
Arthritis in dogs - what pups are most affected?
We often link arthritis to older dogs. However, any canine can suffer from osteoarthritis and some of them are more likely to get this condition than others.
Injuries like fractured ligaments, lack of proper nutrition, elbow and hip dysplasia can lead to arthritic disorders. Obese dogs and giant breeds are equally affected and can develop arthritis at some point in their life.
This condition can also result from sporting activity, infection like Lyme disease or caused by Cushing's disease. Therefore, it's necessary to pay close attention to your pet's health to spot any early changes.
How to spot arthritis in your pet?
Some canines may show first signs of illness when only one-year-old, while 80% of dogs display symptoms as seniors. If you notice some of the following signs, your dog might be battling arthritis.
- Lameness, stiffness, limping
- Doesn't want to play, jump, or walk up stairs
- Reluctant to food
- Loss of muscle mass, especially in one of the rear limbs
- Sudden bathroom accidents around the house
- Feels pain when petted or touched
It's crucial to take your pup to the vet as soon as you notice any of these symptoms. The vet will perform a full physical check-up and ask about your observations. They might also request additional tests to determine the condition of joints.
For canines who are more prone to this condition, a veterinarian may suggest preventive treatments to protect their young joints and prevent the disease from developing. Therefore, as your dog ages, they may have a better chance of avoiding illness.
Similar to humans, therapy may include dog arthritis supplements, activity modification, weight management, anti-inflammatory medications, acupuncture, massage, and low-impact exercise.
Joint supplements are the most common, long-term solutions that are safe and at the same time reduce inflammation and pain, slow the progress of the disease and improve mobility.
Best dog joint supplement
Glucosamine is a common compound in many supplements used to minimise pain and stiffness. It directly affects inflammation of arthritic joints while improving the repair of damaged cartilage. Compared to many other drugs and compounds, glucosamine has proven long-term benefits, and it's safe to use over a period of time.
If you have a dog suffering from progressive joint damage, make sure to include glucosamine in their treatment. The great thing about this compound is that it doesn't have any side effects.
Another natural substance, chondroitin sulfate, stimulates cartilage repair, and it's often used with glucosamine. It minimises pain, improves mobility and joint function while reducing the progress of arthritis. Even though it can be obtained from several resources, it gives the best results as a supplement.
An organic form of sulphur, MSM is a natural anti-inflammatory used for alleviating pain and discomfort in canines with a variety of bone, joint or hip disorders. MSM can benefit your pet in several ways while also minimising damage and age-related pain and stiffness.
Vitamins for arthritis in canines
Several vitamins have been subjects of many studies as scientists examined their effects on arthritis, including antioxidative vitamins C, and E.
So far, they haven't been able to find a connection between antioxidative vitamins and arthritis, meaning they might not be able to minimise arthritic symptoms. However, diet rich in antioxidative vitamins or additional supplementation can improve your pet's overall health.
What to look for in dog supplements?
When looking to buy joint supplements or dog treats for arthritis, you need to focus on specific things. In this section, we will cover ingredients, manufacturing process, dosage, and other things that might help you on this quest.
In many supplements, you will find ingredients like chondroitin and glucosamine, which have been shown to have the best results in alleviating joint pain and maintaining joint health. Ensure that the products you buy don't contain preservatives, or artificial flavours.
Also, keep in mind that chondroitin should be sustainably sourced. Avoid products that harvest chondroitin from sharks.
The product you buy should be made according to the highest manufacturing standards. Additionally, ingredients need to be combined with a cold-formation process that helps ingredients maintain their efficacy and natural benefits.
How many supplements should your dog consume? Well, it depends on numerous factors and dosage is usually specified on the packaging.
Flavour and smell
The product shouldn't have a repulsive smell, or your pets won't take it. For example, it should smell more like a treat rather than medicine. Many companies make supplements that have a rather pleasant smell for canines.
How to give supplements to your dog?
Many dogs are notorious for refusing to take supplements. They will reject anything they consider suspicious or doesn’t taste the same as their regular food. That’s why pet owners need to trick them or choose supplements that really taste great.
One of the things you can do when dealing with a stubborn pet is to mix supplements with their food. This is the oldest trick in the book and works like a charm. They mix well with wet food and standard kibble.
On the other hand, you can choose supplements that taste delicious. For instance, get them beef flavour because canines love a good slice of beef.
Natural alternatives to treat canine arthritis
At this point, there are plenty of things you can do to decrease inflammation and minimise pain in your pup. While conventional medicines and supplements ensure your furry companion has a good quality of life, these alternatives offer a different approach and have an equally beneficial effect.
A great way to help your furry companion cope with arthritic disorders is to initiate physical therapy. Rehabilitation can be a big help for all canines struggling with generative joint diseases. It will reinforce their muscles, boost joint mobility, and alleviate pain.
Hands-on techniques often employ gentle manipulation of joints, stretching, and massage. The light movements and exercises help with pain, promote blood flow, and improve the flexibility of the affected area.
Introduce your pet to acupuncture. The vet uses needles to stimulate nerves in specific parts of your dog’s body during the procedure. Acupuncture will relax muscles and increase blood flow. If you take your pup to regular acupuncture treatments, you can easily manage arthritis-related pain.
Your pup's overall health, including joint health, can be improved with a natural, healthy, whole food diet. Keep in mind that many dogs are picky, and pet parents face many challenges to find the right food.
Make sure to provide your pooch with food containing plenty of proteins and a healthy balance of carbs and fats. On the other hand, if you deal with an overweight dog, you need to help them lose some weight and take the stress off their joints.
Never try to regulate your pup’s diet without an expert's help or a qualified nutritionist because you may cause your pet to become deficient in a micronutrient.
Regular exercise is important for overall well-being if your dog lives in an apartment. With diet and exercise, your pet will reach the ideal weight in no time. Physical activity like walking is also one of the best ways to keep your dog in top shape and his joints smooth and running.
A pet-friendly home
Making necessary adjustments around your home can greatly help your pup. You might provide them with a warm and cosy sleeping place. It also helps if their water and food bowls are easy to reach.
Orthopaedic dog bed
Comfortable dog beds with orthopaedic support that are low to the ground will alleviate pain and help your pooch get up without struggling. Make sure that their favourite resting spot has thick bedding with a non-slip mat to prevent injury or pain when getting up.
💡 Final thoughts…
Prevention is the key!
Don't wait until your pup develops arthritis for you to start treating this condition! It's important to offer your pooch great living conditions while ensuring they have a happy and healthy life. There are supplements suitable for all ages, and once your dog reaches certain years, they would be grateful to have lived a life free of pain.