01 May 2019

Joint Supplements for Dogs

Joint pain in dogs, just like humans, is incredibly common. So if you see your dog struggling with joint problems, you're not alone — and luckily, there are a ton of ...

hi i'm dr. gary richter and i want to

talk today about about supplements to to maintain good health in your dog's joints as we all know just like with people dogs do you have a tendency to get arthritic as they get older particularly if the you know maybe they've had some sort of injury in the past and there are a lot of things that can be done to sort of help maintain joint comfort in these guys and even from from a natural standpoint from a nutritional and herbal supplement perspective there are a lot of options so you know just just as a very basic overview you know the wherever there's two bones that come together in the body and form a joint what we have is the ends of those bones are lined with cartilage which is this sort of very nice smooth surface that that can kind of glide without without too much friction and then in between those two bones is what's called joint fluid which sort of functions a little bit like motor oil in your car and so much as it provides a layer of lubrication so that things glide really nicely now what happens when when our thry 'test sets in is the cartilage on those bones starts to wear down and eventually what

you wind up with is bone rubbing on bone and that causes a lot of pain and a lot of inflammation and that's and that's when you start to see symptoms associated with arthritis so you know the question is is well what can we really do about it and there's really two approaches you know the one approach is what can we do to help promote the health of the cartilage and the joint fluid so that way the joint is in better shape so we've improved the condition of the joint and thus there's less pain and inflammation and then the other the other approach is how do we control for pain and inflammation and truthfully both of those approaches are appropriate and effective the thing that tends to work best is if you actually take both approaches at the same time so so to go back to the the first approach of how do we improve that within the joint there are a number of ways to do that you may be aware of compounds like glucosamine and chondroitin and MSM and and things like this basically what these compounds are is they are the nutritional building blocks of cartilage so when you when you feed these to your dog the hope is is

that they will utilize these nutrients to help make new cartilage so that they're so that their joints slide a lot easier the you know the and that can actually work very very well on a lot of dogs sometimes it doesn't work as well as we'd like it to and and probably part of that reason is you know we never really know how well absorbed things like glucosamine are and it may be that you're actually giving a really high quality glucosamine product but if your dog can't actually absorb it and get it into their body and it's not really doing them a whole lot of good so it's always worth trying glucosamine unfortunately it's not sort of blanketly effective 100% of the time another another supplement that you can use to help support the joints is is something called hyaluronic acid effectively this is kind of the the constituents that makes joint fluid so it makes up that lubricating fluid in the joints themselves so much like glucosamine if you give hyaluronic acid you know the hope is is that you're supplementing the joint fluid and helping things move easier so they have less pain and inflammation now you know moving to you

know the other side of the coin of how do we control for whatever pain and inflammation may be left you know there are no shortage of natural compounds out there that have pain relieving and anti-inflammatory effects you know so for example some of the some of the more common things that that you may have heard of turmeric or curcumin boswellia ginger has some very potent anti-inflammatory effects you know extracts of things like California Poppy can have anti-inflammatory effects there's there's you know the the the herbal list honestly goes on and on and on of things that have a you know real potential there so you know oftentimes the question becomes you know there's so many options what do I give you know what product do I give so you know the the way that I normally answer that question when I'm seeing a patient in my office is is you know that's kind of based on what I see on a physical exam and based on that you know I will I will make recommendations to the pet owner as far as you know whether or not they should use glucosamine or hyaluronic acid or

some combination of herbal therapy or or any of a number of other potential therapies that exists as well to help with with joint pain and soreness but really it's it's it's kind of an individual it's sort of an individual thing as far as what combination of things is going to work best for any given animal so what I would you know what I would very strongly recommend before you get too far down the road would be to have a conversation with your veterinarian let them have a look at your dog and give you some ideas about what they think would be the best way to go now certainly if you can find a veterinarian in your area that's a little bit more well-versed in sort of herbal and natural therapy that would be ideal because because you know some veterinarians may not be all that comfortable sort of making those kinds of recommendations you know I would say off the bat in general it's it's it's absolutely safe for most dogs to start either like a glucosamine supplement or a hyaluronic acid supplement which you can just buy over-the-counter I think that that would

be fine for most dogs unless they have some sort of sensitivity to it but if you're gonna go much further than that it would be best if possible to get some veterinary guidance so you know I know that that you know that arthritis and and soreness can be a real troubling thing for both dogs and and and for us as their owners but you know like I say just keep in mind that there are a lot a lot a lot of things that you can do to help keep your dog comfortable for a really long time so it's just a question of doing some research asking the right questions and figuring out what works for your dog as an individual I hope that helps give you an idea of how to keep your dog comfortable in the future thanks for listening [Music]