Joint pain is something we worry about in our older years, but for dogs, it can begin from any age, with 20% of adult dogs experiencing some form of joint pain. Once your dog reaches 7-years-old, the chances rise to 65%! [i]
Joint pain occurs when the cartilage breaks down and the joints become inflamed. Without cartilage, the bones start to rub together, and there isn't enough lubrication to prevent friction. It can be extremely painful, and even stop your dog from wanting to play, walk, or get up to greet you when you get home.
The thought of our beloved pups in pain is heartbreaking, which is why we need to do all we can do help them. And here at the Petlab Co., we want to give you the best advice possible so that you can keep your dog safe from harm!
We’ve put together a list of foods and ingredients that you can feed to your dog individually, or what you should be looking out for in any supplements you buy. Keep reading to find out the best ingredients for your dog’s joints...
The live ingredient in turmeric is called curcumin, and it has been proven to help relieve joint pain! Curcumin is what gives turmeric that bright orange color – but there’s much more to it than that.
Curcumin has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce pain and stiffness in the bones. It also acts as an antioxidant, which can slow down or even prevent cell damage from free radicals and enzymes, which can cause swelling and pain.
You can add a pinch of turmeric to your dog’s diet by mixing it into wet food. Don’t add too much, as it could make the food hard to swallow. Otherwise, you can find turmeric in supplements to help with your dog’s joint pain.
Ginger is from the same family as turmeric and has some similar characteristics. It’s an anti-inflammatory, which can help with joint related pain. The active ingredient is known as gingerol – this is proven to help with arthritic pain due to its ability to prevent inflammation and joint damage.
Naturally produced by the body, glucosamine is a combination of glucose (sugar) and glutamine (an amino acid). It’s a component in the building of cartilage between the joints, but as your furry friend gets older, their bodies produce it less and less.
The lack of cartilage causes the bones to rub together, which is how arthritis begins. So, by giving your dog a glucosamine supplement, their bodies can build up more cartilage and even repair and restore existing damage!
4. Fish Oil
Fish oil has an array of benefits for your dog’s health, but it’s particularly good for joint pain! You see, fish oil is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which act as an anti-inflammatory, and help promote mobility in the joints.
Some pet parents also use fish oil to help keep their pup’s skin and coat healthy and shiny, and fish oil can even promote a healthy immune system and a healthy heart! The most popular type of fish oil is salmon oil, due to its safe levels of vitamins.
Fish oil can be high in calories, so if you’re feeding it regularly to your pooch, make sure you lower their calories elsewhere to avoid weight gain. Weight gain can worsen the symptoms of joint-related conditions, making your attempts to help redundant!
5. Green Lipped Mussel
Native from New Zealand, these mussels are known by this name because of their green edged shells. If you haven’t heard of them, they’re a popular ingredient that pet parents look out for when looking after their pal’s joints!
They contain high levels of natural glucosamine and omega-3 which have anti-inflammatory properties and proven to reduce joint-related pain. Omega-3 fatty acids are vital to maintaining joint structure, which will slow down the development of arthritis, as well as reducing the pain of existing arthritis.
Green Lipped Mussels are just one of the ingredients we’ve used in our new Joint Care formula, along with Salmon Oil, Turmeric, Calcium Fructoborate, and Glucosamine. The Petlab Co. is constantly working to make sure that our products are as effective as possible, which is why we’ve purposefully updated our ingredient list. Take a look for yourself by clicking the link below!
6. Calcium Fructoborate
Otherwise known as CFB, calcium fructoborate is a naturally occurring mineral found in certain plants and fruits. Studies have proven that it can improve the symptoms of arthritis and joint pain [ii] even after a short period of time, which will make a positive impact on your dog’s mobility!
7. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has a number of talents, the main one being its anti-inflammatory properties. It can help to lubricate joints while reducing the stiffness felt by dogs who suffer from joint pain. It also contains fatty acids that help to fight off bacterial, fungal and viral infections that can worsen joint pain.
An added bonus is that coconut oil is known to boost energy levels, which will give your dog the strength to get up and move about, which will keep joints mobile, maintain muscle, and keep your dog from gaining weight. You can mix some coconut oil into your dog's food - start with a small amount, in case they're hesitant about the taste...
8. Sweet Potatoes
If you want to add something to your dog’s food bowl that promises to reduce inflammation, sweet potatoes work a treat! They’re high in beta-carotene which is effective in battling inflamed joints.
As dogs’ joints become weaker, they’re less likely to exercise, which can weaken the muscles. Sweet potatoes contain amino acids which help to build up muscle, which will aid movement again. Amino acids also increase antioxidant activity, which helps to fight damage to cells, which can help in more ailments than joint pain! What a wonderful vegetable!
Dogs are susceptible to as many health problems as we are, but it’s our responsibility to make sure they don’t suffer unnecessarily! Even if your dog doesn’t have arthritis, or you haven’t noticed they have painful joints, you can add some of these ingredients to their diet so you can prevent the pain!
If you’re unsure whether your dog is suffering, you should see you veterinarian for checkups at least once a year. It’s the best way to know if your pup has a secret illness that you nor they might have noticed!