Joint supplements are often recommended for dogs who need additional support to maintain healthy joints. Certain breeds are more likely to require this additional nutritional support as they get older because of their conformation, plus as they age their ability to produce protein to build and strengthen joints will wane.
Some vets advise using supplements as a preventative measure from a young age, especially if the dog has had an injury to the joint, to ensure a healthy joint is maintained. The best joint supplements for dogs will keep joint fluid healthy for ease of movement, will nurture the cartilage, and many will also contain ingredients with anti-inflammatory properties.
Joint supplements are typically available in tablet form or as a liquid and should be safe to use alongside other medications on a long-term basis. As with anything concerning your dog’s health, it’s best to take advice from your vet. It’s important to remember that even the best joint supplements for dogs are not a magic wand – joint issues, such as arthritis, should be managed with several therapies, including weight management, a modified exercise plan, and physiotherapy. You can also ensure your dog is comfortable with one of the best orthopaedic dog beds.
Choosing the best joint supplement for dogs
Here are some of the key active ingredients to look out for:
- Glucosamine: a naturally occurring compound that works as a building block for lots of different processes in the body, and is particularly important for maintaining the cartilage between joints, which assists in smooth movement and reducing concussion of joints. Unlike non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, glucosamine is safe to be used on a long-term basis.
- Chondroitin: this sulphate a natural substance that stimulates cartilage repair, reduces pain and improves joint mobility.
- MSM (methylsulfonylmethane): a naturally occurring sulphur which acts a building block for cell membranes, rejuvenating cells, healing joints and has antioxidant properties. It helps relieve pain and inflammation.
- Green Lipped Mussel: this extract contains omega-3 fatty acids, such as EPA and DHA, to helps minimise pain and inflammation.
- Hyaluronic Acid: a gel-like substance widely used for reducing heat, pain and swelling, and is known to help with lubricating the joints as well as maintaining healthy cartilage and connective tissue.
Joint supplements for dogs: what are your options?
Here is a selection of the best joint supplements for dogs currently on the market along with the manufacturer’s descriptions.
NB: Cost per day has been calculated using the maintenance measure for a medium 20kg dog (usually the larger the dog, the larger the daily measure) and the RRP of the smallest available tub/bottle. Some products require you to feed a loading measure, which will increase the cost per daily measure at the beginning, while buying a larger tub will likely decrease it – these costs per day are a guide only.
YuMove Joint Care for Senior Dogs
Format: Tablet | Sizes: 30, 60, 90 or 120 tablets | RRP: From £17.14 for 30 tablets | Cost per day (20kg dog): £1.14 |
According to VetTrak, YuMove is the UK’s number one veterinary joint supplement brand, with 1.5million doggy clients. This is a multi-action dog joint supplement, specifically designed for senior dogs to aid stiff joints, support joint structure and promote mobility.
It contains 50% more ultra-concentrated, joint-soothing Omega 3 (via green lipped mussel and fish oil) than YuMOVE Adult (which is designed for adult dogs showing occasional signs of stiffness), with added N-Acetyl-D-glucosamine to lubricate and cushion the joints. Contains a unique form of hyaluronic acid that reaches the joint within two hours.
It has been clinically proven to work in six weeks, and reviewers claim they see a difference in days.
Natural VetCare Mobility
Format: Pellet | Sizes: 75g, 150g or 300g | RRP: £10.99 for 75g | Cost per day (20kg dog): £0.36 |
Mobility consists of a unique blend of ingredients to support stiff active joints, while antioxidants and targeted nutrients help to maintain an alert mind and a healthy heart and liver.
It contains a combination of glucosamine, chondroitin sulphate, omega-3 and hyaluronic acid, which work together to nourish the joint cartilage and fluid, maintaining mobility and supporting the joints.
Anti-inflammatory support comes from multiple antioxidant ingredients, such as omega-3, which help neutralise the inflammation associated with stiff joints and support the body’s anti-inflammatory response.
It also boosts digestion and immunity thanks to a careful balance of nutrients including artichoke help maintain optimum fitness and aid nutrient absorption.
Nutramax Cosequin Maximum Strength
Format: Chewable tablets | Sizes: 60, 120, 132, 180 or 250 tablets | RRP: £29.49 for 60 tablets | Cost per day (20kg dog): £0.49 |
A high-quality, scientifically researched nutritional joint health supplement formulated to help support your dog’s joints.
Active ingredients include glucosamine, sodium chondroitin sulphate, MSM and hyaluronic acid, which work together to support healthy cartilage.
Cosequin claims to be the number one veterinarian-recommended, retail, joint-health supplement brand in the US.
Jointsure Advanced Hip & Joint Care
Format: Tablet | Sizes: 60, 120, 300 or 900 tablets | RRP: £14.98 for 60 tablets | Cost per day (20kg dog): £0.50 |
Multi-functional premium tablets designed for stiff and senior dogs. These tablets are formulated to help maintain joint mobility, soothe joint stiffness and support joint structure.
It contains seven high-strength active ingredients combined at the most effective ratios to work synergistically for rapid results: green lipped mussel, glucosamine, natural chondroitin, vitamins C and E, manganese and hyaluronic Acid.
Jointsure also produces a tablet marketed at young and active dogs.
In the UK? View at amazon.co.uk
Zesty Paws Mobility Bites
Format: Soft chews | Flavours: Bacon or duck | RRP: £26.95 for 90 chews | Cost per day (20kg dog): £0.60 |
Mobility Bites are chewables with ingredients (including a glucosamine chondroitin combo) that support joint health for small, medium, large breed, puppies and senior dogs.
They include a premium form of MSM that undergoes a purifying distillation process, and have glucosamine hydrochloride to help maintain the health, lubrication and resiliency of joints and connective tissue, and chondroitin sulphate to support normal healthy cartilage, connective tissue, and joint function.
Also contains vitamins C and E to support normal joint function and connective tissue formation.
In the UK? View at amazon.co.uk
Format: Soft chews | Sizes: 60 or 150 | RRP: £18.99 for 60 chews | Cost per day (20kg dog): £0.32 |
A good option for those dogs that are picky about accepting tablets in their food, this joint care formulation takes the form of a soft, smokey bacon flavour chew which can be fed in the guise of a treat. Active ingredients include glucosamine, green lipped mussel, MSM, turmeric, ascorbic acid, manganese, hyaluronic acid and vitamin E. The powdered form of Joint Force contains similar ingredients with the addition of boswellia.
These soft chews are designed to help your dogs lead a comfortable and active life through supporting joint structure and function with a unique blend of quality ingredients. The best thing is, say the manufacturers, your dog won’t realise they’ve sneakily put all of this into a tasty treat they’ll look forward to each day.
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