Nutritional supplements have a large role in the the treatment of arthritis and repair of damaged joints. Supplements are not pharmaceutical drugs, but instead work by nourishing and supporting joint cartilage and bone, increasing healing and reducing inflammation.
Good joint supplements contain nutraceuticals which help nourish and lubricate the joint surface, reducing wear and tear, improving function, stimulating healing and reducing pain and stiffness.
Cartilage repair supplements such as glucosamine, MSM and chondroitin have a major role in management of arthritis. These products act as building blocks for the damaged cartilage, allowing rapid repair and regeneration of the arthritic joint surface. We will often start by giving animals a short course of cartilage repair injections such as Cartrophen or Pentosan to boost the body levels of the supplement, then switch over to a supplement pill or treat such as Paw Osteosupport or Antinol capsules, or our own Animalkind Green Lipped Mussel treats. The Lyprinol and glucosamine in these products have been scientifically shown to naturally and safely nourish the joint surface.
One other area where these supplements can really help is dogs and cats prone to back pain. The glycoasminoglycans help strengthen the intervertebral discs and stabilise the back. One of my favourites for back pain is Vetri-Disc.
Omega-3 essential oils are also valuable in treatment of arthritis, and have a good natural anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effect on joints, helping reduce joint damage.
These supplements are very safe and have no significant side effects, and are an excellent long-term support for animals with arthritis. They can also significantly reduce the amount of stronger medication and drug treatment required. All dogs and cats who have arthritis should be taking nutritional supplements to help.
Please read on for information about diets to help dogs with joint issues.