Natural Remedies for Rheumatoid Arthritis in Dogs

Natural remedies for rheumatoid arthritis in dogs have been used for centuries to support joint and muscle health. Osteoarthritis is a very common form of arthritis in dogs. It is a chronic disease, giving constant pain to the dog and limiting his movement. This pain can be treated with conventional methods and drugs. Many dogs don't respond positively to medication, so natural remedies may be tried as an alternative solution.

Shortcomings of Traditional Treatment for Arthritis

Traditional treatment includes steroid or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, but these can have numerous side effects such as gastrointestinal distress, gastric ulcers, and kidney and liver problems.

Natural Remedies for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Herbs and supplements may be used instead of conventional methods of treatment. The purpose of these remedies is to:

  • Decrease inflammation
  • Ease joint pain
  • Clean the body and reduce toxins
  • Keep the dog's joints and cartilages in good condition

A healthy lifestyle including a proper diet high in essential nutrients but low in fat, regular but moderate exercise, and weight control are also recommended.

Remedies Controlling Inflammation

There are a great number of herbs which are very efficient in reducing inflammation:

  • Alfalfa and yucca can be used in the morning when the joints are stiff
  • Stinging nettles combined with alfalfa and yucca, which will enhance the effects of each other
  • Comfrey leaves, rosemary and parsley
  • Boswellia
  • Turmeric
  • Licorice
  • Garlic, but should be used with caution, as it is poisonous to dogs

Tinctures from the above mentioned plants are effective if used regularly and can reduce dog bone pain.

Other natural supplements which can be used successfully to reduce inflammation include:

  • Vitamin C, which is a powerful antioxidant and is beneficial for the collagen in the dog's body
  • Fish oil, which contains omega 3 fatty acids, often combined with vitamin E
  • Mussels such as greenlip and perna, which repair the damaged cartilages
  • Bromelain combined with Quercetin

Reducing Joint Pain

Reduing the joint pain is essential in osteoarthritis. Cayenne and St. John's Wort can be beneficial, and they also help the healing process of the cartilages.

Immune System and Joint Support

An accumulation of free radicals in the body can have a negative influence and may trigger the early onset of arthritis. Antioxidants can remove free radicals and keep the immune system healthy, preventing the occurrence of diseases. Some popular spices like ginger, basil, thyme, oregano and turmeric are excellent natural antioxidants and can be added to the arthritic dog's diet. Vitamins A, C and E, Omega 3 fatty acids (found in fish oil, flaxseed oil) and green tea are also excellent antioxidants which clean the  body from free radicals. Milk thistle strengthens the dog's immune system.

To prevent but also to improve your dog's condition, high quality supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitine can be administered. Homeopathy and aromatherapy may also be used in the management of rheumatoid arthritis in canines.