An aging dog suffers similar issues as a human does. This includes conditions such as arthritis, which can be painful and uncomfortable for them. In circumstances such as this, your veterinarian may recommend giving your dog glucosamine, a supplement intended to alleviate the symptoms of joint damage by boosting the repair of damaged cartilage, the moist, spongy material that forms a cushion between joints. Dogs with hip dysplasia, a spinal disc injury, or post-joint surgery are those who may find relief by including glucosamine into their diet.
Veterinarians typically suggest adding glucosamine into your dog’s meals either through flavored tablets, pills, liquid, or powder. You may notice that many foods for senior dogs include glucosamine as a means to protect their joints and other diseases.
A 2007 study in The Veterinary Journal titled, “Randomised double-blind, positive-controlled trial to assess the efficacy of glucosamine/chondroitin sulfate for the treatment of dogs with osteoarthritis,” even found that a glucosamine supplement reduced pain and increased mobility after 70 days of treatment.
As always, check with your veterinarian before feeding your dog any new supplements.
Have a question for Dr. Klein? Email him at CVO@akc.org