How Dog Food Can Help with Dog Arthritis Symptoms
No one wants to see their pet having difficulty exercising, playing and moving about. Unfortunately, arthritis in dogs can severely limit their mobility at any age, and the signs of arthritis in dogs can be seen in any size or breed.
Weight is a crucial factor in causing dog arthritis symptoms, which is where dog parents can step in and tackle the issue with the right dog food, supplements and lifestyle regimens. Every owner wants their dog to live a happy and healthy, long life, and you can prepare your fur baby for success by following these tips.
Diet Is Everything
What dogs consume daily greatly affects the outcome of their health, how they feel and if they experience lethargy. From sneaking table scraps to regularly eating too much dog food, pet parents need to be careful of what their dogs are ingesting. Paying attention to your pup’s diet and what’s in your pet’s dog food is not only important for dogs who have already been diagnosed with arthritis, but also for those aiming at preventative care. It is recommended that you include natural foods such as vegetables and fruits in their diet to boost their intake of phytonutrients and antioxidants, which leads to higher immunity against sicknesses and ailments.
Dr. Jennifer Taylor, DVM, CVA of Lake Side Animal Hospital in New Hampshire, gave us her expertise on dog food for pups with dog arthritis symptoms, saying, “One of my favorite diets is Royal Canin Mobility Support JS from the Royal Canin dog food line. This diet has New Zealand green mussel (Perna canaliculus), which is rich in nutrients that nourish joint cartilage, and also aids with joint inflammation and promotes joint mobility.” This formula also has EPA and DHA to help support the joints, and an antioxidant blend to support a healthy immune system. Dr. Taylor also recommends Hill’s Science Diet Metabolic & Mobility. Not only does this formula offer joint support, but it also has L-carnitine and fiber to help reduce weight.
Bring in the Pet Joint Supplements
Vitamins and supplements that are specially formulated for dogs can add to the quality of their health. Giving pet joint supplements alongside a healthy diet will add vital nutrients to help fight arthritis in dogs and reduce dog arthritis symptoms.
Omega-3 fatty acids are key ingredients in a dog’s diet; these are found in your dog’s food but can also be given as a supplement. Incorporating products like salmon, mackerel and sardines supply an ample amount of omega-3s, supporting not only the joints, but also heart, eyes, skin and range in mobility. Dr. Taylor says, “One of my favorite pet joint supplements is Dasuquin with MSM made by Nutramax. It can be used in conjunction with a prescription joint diet.” Another effective supplement is The Missing Link Ultimate Canine Hip & Joint Formula, which contains a mix of glucosamine, hydrochloride, omega-3 and 6 fatty acids for better joint mobility and function.
Keeping the Weight Off
According to Dr. Taylor, it is often overlooked that maintaining a healthy body weight per breed and size is one of the most critical aspects of warding off signs of arthritis in dogs. Unbeknownst to many, excess weight adds pressure and brings discomfort to the joints, and also adds to the inflammation and decay of vital cartilage. She explains, “One of the biggest factors in older, arthritic patients is that they are typically overweight to obese (more often obese), and that increases the stress on their already inflamed and painful joints. Weight control is imperative for successful management of arthritis, and unfortunately not given much merit.”
Leah McCormack is a New England native and dog lover. She graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City with her bachelor’s degree and started her animal care business, Winni Pups. Her published articles and features can be found in The Boston Globe, The EveryGirl, The Improper Bostonian, Mane Addicts, WGSN and Chewy!