As we supplement our modern diets with everything from vitamin tablets to Omega 3 capsules, we must not forget our pets. From treats intended to keep cats’ eyes shiny and dogs’ teeth clean to more medicinal foods, one of the most important ways you can supplement your dog’s diet is by ensuring you are taking adequate care of its joints. Joint supplements for dogs work in much the same way as supplements sold for humans, by maintaining good bone and muscle structure and helping to prevent the wear and tear caused by exercise.
Common joint-aiding supplements work by helping the body to support the delicate bone and muscular structure of your pet, allowing them continued freedom to run and jump as they always have. Products claim that stiffness in aching joints may be reduced with prolonged use of joint supplements.
Many of the joint supplements available in pet shops and from your vet contain glucosamine – an amino sugar used by the body to maintain protein and fat structure. These amino sugars are vital in decreasing stiffness in joints and maintaining a good degree of flexibility. Often these sugars are found naturally in the diet, but with modern medicine providing the means to supply all the glucosamine needed, dog owners can be safe in the knowledge they are providing for their dog’s needs.
Bizarrely, many joint supplements for dogs also contain an extremely natural product – extracts from perna canaliculus; The Green-Lipped Mussel! This sea-dwelling creature has been found to be a producer of anti-inflammatory materials – perfect for the stiff, painful joints of an older dog.
Of course, prevention is better than cure. Dog treats that contains vitamin E will keep its coat shiny, but to look after what’s on the inside, and maintain healthy joints for your dog in the long-term, tasty supplements that don’t have to be forced down are available. The majority of these contain that all-important glucosamine, but also collagen to maintain those muscle and fat cells and hyaluronic acid – important to maintain the important fibers and cartilage in your dog’s joints.
However, remember, before you rely on those important tablets and treats too much, the best joint supplements for your dog are the ones you can provide – the long walks to keep those stiff joints moving and flexible, plenty of vitamin-rich food without too many treats and your loving care.
With your watchful eye over your pet and those preventative supplements to ward off any joint pain threatening to build up, you can be assured that your pet will be running, jumping and keeping you on your toes for many years to come. Always consult your vet if thinking of introducing supplements to your dog’s diet, and ask if choosing to use supplements may prevent joint pain in your dog’s future.