Degenerative joint diseases impacts over 25% of all dogs and not all of them are old, requiring them to take a joint supplement. Osteoarthritis is a breakdown of the cartilage that provides cushioning for joints which then causes pain and less mobility. If your doodle is already experiencing joint pain or a lack of mobility then damage to the cartilage has already started. Arthritis is the most common reason for joint pain in dogs. 😣
Lots of dog owners think that joint supplements are only needed after your doodle shows signs of joint issues. But joint supplements can also work as great preventative care. Since a quality joint supplement can provide both prevention and help lessen any existing arthritis symptoms they may be a great idea for your doodle. Any dog can develop osteoarthritis but according to the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation certain breeds are more prone to developing the condition. 🐕
There are many dog breeds that unfortunately are predisposed to having joint issues during their lives. Many dogs also develop joint issues long before they start to show signs or symptoms. There are certain dog breeds that have more joint issues than others due to the structure of their bones, 🦴 a history of overbreeding and inbreeding in the dog breeds history. When it comes to dog breeds that are the most prone to issues they are large and giant breeds. Some of these dog breeds that are predisposed are St. Bernards, Great Danes, Rottweilers, Mastiffs, Boxers, Retrievers and Bernese Mountain Dogs. Dogs that are predisposed to genetic joint issues can benefit from early intervention with the use of quality supplements to protect their joints prior to damage. 👍
In addition to genetic predisposition there are other factors that can predispose dogs to having joint issues. Some of these factors are obesity, poor nutrition, previous joint injuries, Lyme disease and a history of repetitive stress from athletics such as flyball competitions. 🎾 The other factor that no dog can avoid is time and age. Middle aged and senior dogs are of course more prone to joint issues.
These large dog breeds or dogs that are predisposed for other reasons can especially benefit from early quality supplementation for their joint care. Starting at an early age will help protect joints from damage instead of trying to help with any joint damage that has already taken place.
Some doodles are more prone to joint issues than others. A sad fact is that joint issue symptoms can start as early as one year of age in some doodles. Even if the joint pain is not early onset as some breeds are more prone to, the fact is that most dogs will have joint pain during their lives. Veterinarians say that up to 80 percent of senior dogs can have joint pain symptoms. 🥺
Common symptoms to watch out for are stiffness or limping after laying down. Doodles also often show a reluctance to engage in activities such as running, jumping or climbing stairs. If you notice any of these issues or you have a doodle that is predisposed to have joint issues you may want to consider a joint supplement. 💊
Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound that is either extracted from shellfish 🦀 or it is created in a lab. Glucosamine needs to be taken at a specific level to build up in the body and remain at that level to be effective. Once the glucosamine levels are at the appropriate level to be effective they can help repair or suppress joint damage and help alleviate pain and stiffness. Glucosamine has been proven for long-term use to assist with mobility.
Chondroitin is a natural substance that can be found in many animal sources such as fish, pigs, cattle, birds and sharks. 🦈 Chondroitin is often used in conjunction with glucosamine for added benefit. It is believed that they are absorbed faster when they are taken together. Chondroitin is believed to slow joint damage, improve joint function and mobility and reduce pain.
Green Lipped Mussels is a nutritional supplement that is extracted from mussels that are native to New Zealand. 🇳🇿 They contain omega-3 fatty acids and amino acids which can help to lubricate joints and cartilage. GLM also has the additional benefit of having antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Most GLM supplements are powdered. Some dog food and treat companies are now adding GLM to their products as well. 👏
Fatty acids is a supplement that is natural and usually derived from fish oil and krill oil. 🐟 Both of these sources are rich with omega-3, amino acids and antioxidants. When it comes to joint health fatty acids can help protect and lubricate joints and decrease joint pain. Other benefits of omega-3 fatty acids contribute to a healthy heart, skin, kidneys and support cell membrane health. 🫀 Omega-3 fatty acids also show benefits of cognitive support for older dogs. Adding fatty acids to your dog’s diet is easier than ever with dog food companies now adding fatty acids to some dog food. There are also treat manufacturers that are adding fatty acids to their treats as well. 🥓
CBD which stands for cannabidiol is a supplement that is extracted from cannabis plants. 🪴 CBD is believed to have many benefits for dogs such as calming anxiety, reducing nausea, controlling seizures and pain due to nerve damage. When it comes to joints, scientists believe that CBD can reduce pain related to osteoarthritis and may have an anti-inflammatory effect overall.
What to Look For
Not all dog supplements are created the same or use the same amount of each ingredient. Some joint supplements may contain some of the beneficial all natural supplement ingredients needed to help your doodle. But some do not, not at proven clinical levels anyway. So doing a little ingredient checking is always a good idea as an owner shopping for supplements. 🔍 Make sure and choose a dog supplement for the highest pharmaceutical standards as possible. Choosing supplements that have key ingredients at levels that make a difference to your dog’s joints and are of the safest quality. One of the ways that owners can do this is by looking for products that have the National Animal Supplement Council (NASC) Quality Seal on them. Products that receive the NASC seal go through extra steps to ensure quality control. 🎉 Some of these added quality assurance steps are passing an independent 3rd party inspection every 2 years, complying with strict labeling guidelines and submitting to random product testing by independent labs to ensure ingredient claims are correct.
The reason that all of this additional testing, especially 3rd party testing is important is because it means that products are being tested by a laboratory that was not involved in the manufacturing or sale of the supplement. When 3rd party testing is used it is more likely to be thorough testing that is unbiased ensuring nutritional claims are correct. 🙂
One additional point regarding supplements is that dosage instructions should be followed according to manufacturer instructions along with the medical advice from your veterinarian. 🧑⚕️