A Guide to Dog Arthritis Supplement Options

A dog arthritis supplement can go a long way towards easing your dog's arthritis symptoms. A supplement can not only ease the pain in your dog's joints, but can even help regenerate them! Here's everything you need to know about dog arthritis supplements for pain relief and joint regeneration.

Causes of Arthritis

Osteoarthritis, or inflammation of the joint, can have many causes. Genetic malformation of bones and joint structures, such as hip dysplasia, might be to blame. Torn ligaments or tendons, trauma or infection of the joint, poor nutrition, obesity or auto-immune diseases are all among the causes of arthritis in dogs. Arthritis occurs when the cartilage in a joint has worn away to the point that bones are rubbing together.

Anything that causes a change in the normal structure of the joint can, over time, lead to arthritis. Because there are no nerve endings in the cartilage, degeneration can be quite advanced before symptoms appear.

Traditional Treatments for Arthritis

Often, there is nothing that can be done surgically to improve the symptoms of arthritis. Prednisone and other corticosteroids are often used to reduce the pain and inflammation of arthritis. However, long term steroid use can lead to additional joint degeneration, as well as other health problems. Steroids do not promote the healing of cartilage.

NSAIDs, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, such as Rymadil, are often used to treat the pain and inflammation of canine arthritis. While these medications can offer much pain relief, they can also lead to GI disorders, including gastric ulcers, liver disease and kidney disease. Neither do NSAIDs promote cartilage regrowth and the healing of joints damaged by arthritis.

Nutraceuticals Safer than Traditional Drugs

Nutraceuticals are substances that can form a part of your dog's normal diet, but have medical benefits. These substances are safer than traditional drugs; they have very few side effects, and can be considered a nutrient. Glucosamine and chondroitin are two nutraceuticals that can help improve your dog's arthritis symptoms.

Glucosamine is a compound that occurs naturally in your dog's body, and it one of the vital lubricants that help maintain your dog's joint health. As you dog grows older, his body becomes less capable of producing glucosamine for itself, and joint degeneration can occur, leading to canine arthritis.

Glucosamine also plays a role in the formation of nails, tendons, skin, eyes, synovial fluid, bone, ligaments, heart valves and mucosial secretions. Its creation in your dog's body is associated with cellular growth. Glucosamine supplements can help regenerate lost cartilage in joints, easing and even reversing the symptoms of canine arthritis. Glucosamine is one of the building blocks of cartilage, and glucosamine supplements can go a long way toward restoring your dog's range of movement.

Chondroitin sulfate, often included in glucosamine supplements, can prevent stress injuries to joints. It may also help repair damage connective tissue. This substance keeps the cartilage in your dog's joints supple and lubricated. It can reduce joint pain and may help your dog's body repair damaged joints and regenerate cartilage.

Omega fatty acids can also be uses as an arthritis supplement to help maintain the health of your dog's joints.