The best joint supplement for your dog combines glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and methysulfonylmethane (MSM). Joint supplements should improve your dog’s mobility, relieve them of pain and discomfort, and support cartilage and tissue development. As a bonus, look for a product like Deley Naturals Advanced Hip & Joint Supplements, which contains ingredients like turmeric to provide additional anti-inflammatory benefits for your dog.
A powerhouse of a supplement, glucosamine is incredibly popular with dog owners, and for good reason: studies have found that it reduces pain and severity of symptoms in dogs with osteoarthritis. Because it lacks the negative side effects common in NSAIDs, hip and joint supplements that contain glucosamine are a popular long-term treatment option for dogs suffering from arthritis.
Glucosamine, an amino sugar, assists in the production and repair of your dog’s tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and synovial fluid. Your dog can also obtain glucosamine through their diet by consuming bone marrow, shellfish, and cartilage. As part of the normal aging process, glucosamine production decreases over time.
Unfortunately, by the time your dog is showing signs of limping or stiffness, some cartilage degeneration has already recurred. Cartilage is very difficult to replace or repair once it’s gone, especially without outside help. Large-breed dogs–think golden retrievers, German shepherds, and Great Danes–with a genetic predisposition to hip dysplasia and other joint-related diseases can start taking glucosamine supplements from a young age to keep them moving comfortably for as long as possible.
Often found in hip and joint supplements alongside glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate helps your dog’s body absorb the benefits of their joint supplements with greater efficacy while providing pain relief and anti-inflammatory benefits. Like glucosamine, it aids in the building of cartilage. It also nourishes the tissues lining the joint and promotes elasticity in the cartilage, essentially strengthening your dog’s shock absorption abilities.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Another incredibly popular supplement for dogs (and humans), fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids. While fish oil mostly gets discussed for how it benefits your dog’s skin and coat health, it can be an effective tool in the fight against arthritis.
Studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids reduce morning stiffness and may possibly prevent or attenuate arthritis. Fish oil specifically contains eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which reduce inflammation and protect your dog’s joints. Plant-based alternatives like flaxseed or canola oil only contain alpha-lineolic acid (ALA), which requires additional synthesis to produce EPA and DHA and is less efficient overall. Combine a product like Deley Naturals Fish Oil for Dogs with their Advanced Hip & Joint Supplement to provide your dog with as much support as they might need.
Rounding out the list is MSM, a naturally occurring sulfur used for its anti-inflammatory benefits and antioxidant properties. You can either choose foods high in MSM or add it to your dog’s diet, whether through a supplement like Deley Naturals Advanced Hip & Joint or as an isolated ingredient.
Like many supplements, MSM is most effective when used as a preventative, but that doesn’t mean it becomes ineffective later on. MSM is often combined with glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate because it blocks the pain impulses that result from osteoarthritis, relieving your dog of their aches and pains and allowing them to move around more freely.
MSM also stimulates your dog’s body to produce more glucosamine and collagen, both of which are needed for your dog to maintain joint integrity.