Glucosamine for Dogs and Cats

As pets age, their joints become a bit more fragile, a bit stiffer, and simple things like walks can be tough. To help ease joint pain, glucosamine can be an excellent supplement for your older pet. Here are some important facts about Glucosamine:

Understanding Glucosamine

Glucosamine is used as a preventative for joints, not a treatment. Once your dog is suffering from arthritis, glucosamine can only do so much to help the joints. With moderate to severe arthritis, most animals require prescription medications and other supplements to help them.

Larger dog’s age much faster than little dogs, starting younger is better for them. For dogs that are over 50lbs beginning glucosamine between the ages of 1-3 years is best for joint preventative care. Smaller dogs (50lbs and less) and cats can be started between the ages of 4-7 years.

Considerations and Product Options

Human grade glucosamine is not suitable for your pets. It is harder for them to digest and not readily absorbed as compared to glucosamine specially made for animals. Pet glucosamine also ranges from liquid to chewy treats, so there are lots of options. The most important things to look for are the amount of glucosamine in the product and if it contains chondroitin and MSM. Glucosamine works well if it has chondroitin and MSM, it is absorbed better and has a more significant effect on the joints.

Veterinary Diet Option

Another option is a prescription veterinary diet that is available for pets with arthritis. These diets have glucosamine/chondroitin and green-lipped mussel directly in the food and at therapeutic levels to help with joint issues. No struggling with pills or liquids needed, the glucosamine is right in the food! Be aware of the store bought diets that claim to have joint support. They do not contain high enough levels of glucosamine to be beneficial for your pet.

Conclusion and Recommendation

Joint issues can happen at any age especially in large breed dogs so adding in glucosamine early can be a huge benefit to them! Contact the staff at Lomsnes Veterinary Hospital for information on the level and form of glucosamine supplement that would be best for your loving pet.

Written by Taylor, RVT