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January 03, 2022

Best Joint Supplements for Dogs in 2022 - Timely Pain Support

Pets Dogs

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Limited - Green Living - Joint Supplements for Dogs Green Living/for PhillyVoice

You probably talk to your favorite furry friend all the time, but what if she could answer you? What new information would she color your life with? She probably has a great sense of humor, she could probably help you recover some lost items, and she might even reveal something that’s a little hard to hear: That she’s in pain. Even though she always wants to show up happily at your side when you wake up in the morning, when you get home from work, and when you return from vacation, the truth is your dog may need some joint support. A quick online search for “best dog joint supplement” reveals a long list of suppliers with many promises. If you’ve noticed any kind of behavioral change in your dog and you’re wondering if it’s related to pain, you might even make a fast, uninformed decision on the product you purchase.

In this article, we share the five best joint supplements for dogs so that we can help take the guesswork out of the buying decision for you. We don’t just give you our top recommendations without substantiating our choices, either. First, we let you know what criteria we looked for with each product. As you go through the list, we let you know why we chose each product specifically. Toward the end of this article, you’ll find some answers to your most frequently asked questions so that by the time you’ve finished reading, you know exactly what to look for and who to trust when it comes to supplements for your doggo.

Top 5 Joint Supplements for Dogs

  1. JustFoodForDogs – Editor’s Choice - Best Dog Joint Supplements
  2. Anxious Pet – Runner Up
  3. Zesty Paws – Honorable Mention
  4. NaturVet – Senior Dogs
  5. Nutramax – Customer Favorite

How Did We Select These 5 Brands?

To put this list together and provide an unbiased set of recommendations, we had to consider a few different factors.

• Product Variety
Product variety is huge because dogs have their own picky natures. Some of them will gobble anything up while others have a more refined palate. When you have a good variety of products to choose from, you can select the one you know your dog will love.

• Happy Customers
The best recommendations come through word of mouth. As part of our research, we dedicated time to reading through customer reviews to discover how pets took to these supplements. The brands and products we selected to include in this list have a vast amount of positive reviews.

• Pricing
Buying supplements can get expensive and as you care for your own body, the bodies of your loved ones, and the bodies of your beloved pets, it’s important to consider what those expenses amount to. We selected products that are budget friendly with a range of prices, so that you can keep prioritizing your pup’s health, comfort, and wellbeing.

• Informative Descriptions
Although photos are helpful when deciding on products online, when it comes to a dog joint supplement, you should be provided with all information in an easy to read format. Some dogs have allergies or are simply averse to certain flavors and textures, so knowing exactly what you’re getting upfront without having to do any digging is part of why we selected the joint supplements for dogs on this list.

5 Best Joint Supplement for Dogs Options - Reviews & Analyses

1. JustFoodForDogs – Best Dog Joint Supplements

Limited - Green Living - JustFoodForDogs

Pros:

• Save 35% on first autoship order
• Helps with joint mobility
• Contains collagen and chondroitin sulfate
• Free local pickup available in some locations

Cons:

 Product in capsule form

Product Details
Just Food for Dogs has a joint care supplement that is scientifically proven effective for your dog’s joint health. It promotes healthy joints with type II collagen and also contains chondroitin sulfate sodium and hyaluronic acid. These capsules are designed to help support the structural integrity of your pup’s joints and connective tissue. If you’ve noticed that your dog has slowed down and she’s not as active as she used to be, you’ll find that these capsules help support joint mobility and can get your pup feeling a little more like herself again. Normal daily exercise that used to create stiffness and soreness will be more enjoyable and those after-effects will be greatly reduced as well.

Cost and Savings
This bottle of 60 capsules costs $48.95. It’s only available in one size and it can be picked up for free locally in some places or you can sign up for autoship and you’ll save 35% off your first order and 5% off any recurring autoship orders. If you’re just trying the product out and you’re not sure if you’re ready to commit to autoship, you can expect to pay flat rate shipping on all standard orders. This fee is $10 and valid within the United States only.

What Customers Say
Customers happily share photos of their favorite fur friends and recount their experience with Just Food for Dogs supplements. For example, one verified buyer has a 3.5-year-old beagle that was experiencing some slight stiffness with his back dog hip. After she started him on a joint supplement regimen with Just Food for Dogs, she is happy to report that her beagle is 100% better. Another customer has been using Just Food for Dogs supplements for a year and she can’t believe the difference. Her dog is moving significantly more, has a lot less pain, and has even started exhibiting puppy-like playfulness at nearly 10 years old.

Learn more at JustFoodForDogs.com


2. Anxious Pet – Runner Up Joint Supplement for Dogs

Limited - Green Living - Anxious Pet

Pros:

 Veterinarian formulated
• 60 day money back guarantee
• Ships free next business day
• Peanut butter flavor

Cons:

 Only one flavor option available

Product Details
The Anxious Pet has Hip & Hop Soft Chews that are peanut butter flavored, and veterinarian formulated to help support the health of your dog’s joints. This best joint supplement for dogs contains glucosamine, MSM, chondroitin sulfate, and a proprietary blend that includes cat’s claw, organic turmeric, and white willow. The final active ingredient is Boswellia Serrata extract. For most pets, one chew per day is all you need. Key benefits include cartilage support, connective tissue, and joint health support. These chews are also designed to reduce inflammation and dog joint pain while supporting immune health. If your pet has restricted mobility and experiences pain, these chews are perfect for helping to reduce discomfort and increase daily exercise enjoyment.

Cost and Savings
For a bottle of 60 soft chews, the total cost is $39. If you choose to sign up for auto refill, you’ll save 15% on your orders. With The Anxious Pet, shipping is always free on every order. The best part is they offer a 60 day money back guarantee. If you’re not 100% in love with the product, they’ll process a refund without any questions. Their aim is for your pet to experience a new sense of peace and happiness.

What Customers Say
One customer shares a short story about her elderly dog, Bernice who at 12 years old started moving slowly. She was having a hard time with basic tasks like getting up and down the stairs and getting on and off the couch. After she started giving her these soft chews, she noticed changes in just a few short days. She calls the Hip & Hop soft chews a total game changer.

Learn more at TheAnxiousPet.com


3. Zesty Paws – Honorable Mention

Limited - Green Living - Zesty Paws

Pros:

 Early cyber deals
• Duck flavored
• Soft chews
• Up to 250 count jars

Cons:

 Not suitable for puppies younger than 12 weeks

Product Details
These duck flavored soft chews by Zesty Paws are formulated for hip and joint support. They support lubrication and resiliency and incorporate glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and MSM. They are available in a 90 count jar, a 180 count jar, and a 250 count jar. They can be provided to dogs of all breed sizes and ages, except for young puppies. Use them preventatively for joint support or to provide your dog with relief from joint stiffness. Along with supporting normal cartilage, healthy connective tissue, and improved joint function, these soft chews also contain vitamin C and vitamin E for antioxidant support. Smaller dogs need just one soft chew per day, medium size dogs need two soft chews, and large dogs over 75 pounds need just three soft chews per day.

Cost and Savings
Savings are generous on the Chewy website. For a 90 count jar of these supplements, you can expect to pay $26.97. Pair these with another item to qualify for free shipping because orders after $49 ship free in one to three days. If you want to subscribe to autoship, you’ll save an additional 5% on your regular deliveries. Check the product description area to see if there are additional deals available. Sometimes Chewy offers a promotion that incentivizes you to buy three items and get one for free, which allows you to mix and match.

What Customers Say
This item is rated 4.6 out of five stars on the Chewy website. Although one customer warned that if you have a picky dog, they might not like these soft chews, other customers are more than pleased. One review tells the story of a dog entering her senior years who has been struggling with her mobility. Even when she was called, she would start grunting and would refuse to comply because of the discomfort she was experiencing with her joints. After deciding to try this product, her owner has noticed she transitions a lot better now when called and moves around with more freedom than she did when she was struggling. He gives her one soft chew per day, and she loves them. Her owner is happy to recommend them.

Learn more about Zesty Paws


4. NaturVet – Senior Dogs

Pros:

 Save 50% on first autoship
• Includes Omegas
• Formulated for senior wellness
• Formulated by veterinarians in the US

Cons:

 May not be suitable for pregnant or breastfeeding dogs

Product Details
NaturVet offers senior wellness advanced supplements for hip and joint issues that include glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, MSM, and omega support. They are available in a 120 count pouch or a 240 count pouch. Although these are formulated for senior dogs, they may be used for joint support in any dogs over one year old. This special formula is designed to support your dog’s joints and help her maintain healthy cartilage and connective tissues. They were created by veterinarians in the US and are soft, which is ideal for older pets that struggle with crunchy treats.

Cost and Savings
The 120 count pouch costs $13.99. With Chewy, shipping is free after you spend $49. Bundle up your favorite products to qualify for free shipping or enroll in autoship on your first order to save 50%. With autoship, you also get free access to chat with licensed vets seven days a week and you save 5% on all future autoship orders.

What Customers Say
Customers call this a great joint supplement. One verified buyer gives these soft chews to his two medium size dogs to keep their tails wagging. Another customer with a 19 year old German Shepherd needed a product that could help his dog walk better. He started providing his beloved Rugar with these supplements about a year ago and he’s noticed improved mobility without the signs of joint pain he used to see. He is grateful he has a product to turn to that is helping his dog live out his life more comfortably.

Learn more about NaturVet


5. Nutramax – Customer Favorite

Limited - Green Living - Nutramax

Pros:

 Choose autoship and save
• Maximum strength with MSM
• Veterinarian recommended brand
• Scientifically researched

Cons:

 You must spend at least $49 to qualify for free shipping

Product Details
If you’ve noticed that your dog experiences difficulty with sitting or standing, is struggling with going up and down the stairs, or seems stiff and uncomfortable after getting up from a laying down position, these supplements may just be the product you need to put a little pep back into your pup’s step. They are available in a 60 count, 120 count, or 240 count bag. They are formulated to deliver maximum strength with MSM plus omega-3’s to support a healthy skin and coat. The soft chews are moist and tasty, which means your pup won’t even know that what you’re giving her is actually good for her. She’ll just walk around proudly, feeling like the best girl.

Cost and Savings
For the 60 count bag, the cost is $21.76 and for the 240 count bag, the cost is $69.96. If you choose autoship, you can save an extra 5% on all of your future deliveries. There are no commitments with autoship; you can cancel at any time.

What Customers Say
These soft, moist chews come highly recommended as a best joint supplement for dogs from other pup parents. One customer offers a friendly reminder that keeping senior dogs active is vital for their overall health but when they’re in pain, they may just want to curl up and become couch potatoes. To prevent this from happening to his own Border Collie, he started giving him joint supplements but couldn’t find one that didn’t have uncomfortable side effects until he discovered Nutramax’s supplements. At 14 years old, his Border Collie is still very active with a perky personality, even after long hikes and walks.

Learn more at Nutramax


What Are the Benefits of Joint Supplements for Dogs?

The primary benefit of supplements for joint support in dogs is their ability to play a preventive role that protects your dog from pain and discomfort in her later years. Even if you start your dog on a joint supplement later in her life, she’s still going to enjoy several different benefits, including:

Natural pain relief
Part of what makes your dog’s life so full of boundless joy is her ability to play, run, and walk alongside you. A dog’s physical activity is part of her exuberance and when she doesn’t have the ability to move freely, not only does pain rob her of her comfort, but it also robs her of her joy. A high-quality joint supplement offers natural pain relief, so that your dog can experience normal physical activity without a feeling of dread beforehand, a feeling of pain during, or a feeling of exhaustion after their bodies have expended a lot of energy just to get around the block.

Reduced inflammation
Inflammation is what flares up the pain in your dog’s joints. Supplements help to reduce that inflammation, which has a natural consequence of making your dog more comfortable.

Strengthened joint cartilage
While supplements for joints do work toward relieving discomfort and pain, they are also formulated to strengthen your dog’s cartilage and connective tissues and to improve joint mobility through lubrication. With all of these benefits working together, your dog experiences a higher quality of life.

Which Dog Breeds Are Prone to Joint Problems?

It’s possible for any dog to develop joint problems depending on their activity levels or any injuries they may have experienced but there are certain breeds that have a genetic predisposition for problems with joints. As a dog owner, you have a responsibility to monitor your pup for any signs that she is in pain or is experiencing issues with mobility. And certainly, as your dog gets older, joint problems become significantly more likely. Nevertheless, below we cover some of the most common breeds known to develop issues with their joints.

Mastiffs
Mastiffs are an extra large breed and with so much mass on their joints, the development of arthritis is pretty common. Additionally, Mastiffs are known to develop hip and elbow dysplasia. The sooner you can incorporate supplements for joint support as a preventive measure, the more comfortable your Mastiff will be throughout his lifetime.

German Shepherds
German Shepherds, though not as large as Mastiffs, are also known to develop hip dysplasia, joint problems, and arthritis. Similarly, these types of dogs need some preventive measures to keep them active and comfortable well into their senior years.

Labradors
Labradors are known to develop joint issues but not so much because they are naturally large dogs, rather because they are prone to obesity. When a dog has excess weight on his body, that’s a lot more pressure on his joints so using supplements to support healthy joints along with a healthy diet and plenty of exercise can keep your favorite Lab healthy through old age.

Rottweilers
Like the other breeds mentioned, Rottweilers are also genetically predisposed to developing joint issues like elbow dysplasia, hip dysplasia, and arthritis. They’re also uniquely prone to developing osteochondrosis dissecans. However, you can make your Rottweiler more comfortable and even prevent the development of malformed joint cartilage by feeding a well-rounded diet that fulfills all their nutritional requirements.

Great Danes
Great Danes are another extra large breed. They are known for growing very quickly, which could lead to arthritis, hip and/or elbow dysplasia. There’s nothing you can do to prevent how fast these dogs grow, but you can support their joints with supplements to keep them comfortable, especially during those intense growing phases and late into their elder years.

Daschunds
Although Daschunds are not a large breed, the way their bodies are shaped can make them prone to the development of back issues and could lead to excess strain on their joints.

What Are the First Signs of Arthritis or Joint Pain in Dogs?

It’s possible for arthritis to occur in any one of your dog’s joints. Normally, you’ll see some of these symptoms appear as your dog ages but arthritis can appear during any point in your dog’s life. Below are some signs to look out for. If you notice any of the following, it’s advised you work with your vet and get your dog the treatment she needs.

Limping
Limping can signal anything from a bug bite to a cut on your dog’s paw. However, when certain joints are affected, you may notice that your dog walks with a slight or obvious limp. Limping is always something worth looking into. If your dog has experienced any kind of damage to the spine, you may notice that the back legs have trouble keeping up with the front legs. This can also be seen in a dog that experiences hind leg stiffness upon getting up from a lying position and has a hard time recovering mobility in the legs for a few minutes.

A change in behavior, including irritability
Since your dog can’t talk to you, you know to look for changes in behavior. Whereas you used to have a snuggle bug, you may notice that your dog prefers to stay removed from the family and kind of quiet in a low-traffic corner somewhere in your home. Depending on your dog’s temperament, you may also notice some aggressive behavior suddenly surge like snapping or biting when touched or held.

Unwillingness to move, even when called
If you’ve noticed that your dog stops running to you at the sound of you opening a bag of treats, you may need to check on her. If you’re used to calling your dog and having her run over to you within seconds, no matter where she is in the house, but now she’s not, this could be a sign that she’s in too much pain to make it to you and would rather stay put in a comfortable position.

Yelping to whining
When joints are inflamed, they’re very sensitive to touch. A simple pat on your dog could cause yelping or whining. What used to be a regular display of affection that now creates joint pain in your dog is a cause for concern and needs to be treated.

Fatigue
If your dog is experiencing a lot of pain related to her joints, she’s bound to be exhausted. She’ll be uncharacteristically tired, moping around, and staying in her sleeping area for a lot longer than she used to. If you notice this change, bring her to your vet to get her checked out.

Licking or biting certain joints
Dogs tend to pay special attention to the parts of their bodies that hurt. Because inflamed joints are painful, you may notice that she is licking or biting at certain spots to alleviate some of her discomfort. This could lead to hair loss and irritated skin where she’s trying to relieve the joint pain. Never take any of these signs lightly and always connect with your vet to put a care plan together.

When Should I Start Giving My Dog Joint Health Supplements?

If you have a large breed dog that is prone to the development of joint issues, you should start with dog joint supplements as soon as they exit the puppy stage, at about one year of age. This is because these dogs have a genetic predisposition to the development of arthritis, hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and joint inflammation. Breeds that are not susceptible to the development of these joint conditions may be able to wait longer to begin taking supplements. However, if you have any one of the breeds we listed above or any other large or joint issue prone dogs like old English Sheepdogs, pugs, or French bulldogs, get started at the one year mark.

Even if your dog is not one of the breeds susceptible to the development of joint problems, it’s important you understand that supplements that promote healthy joints work substantially better before your dog develops any kind of arthritis or joint condition. Preventive measures are the way to go when thinking about supplements. Start extremely early if your dog is susceptible to joint problems and talk to your vet about when to get your pup started on a good joint supplement regimen.

If you live an extremely active lifestyle and love taking your dog along with you, your dog’s joints will experience more pressure and will have an increased risk for joint problems than a dog that has a less active lifestyle. And remember: dogs have evolved to hide their pain. When dogs are in packs, pain signals weakness to the other members of the pack and it could cause a dog to be left behind. Your pup doesn’t want you to know when he’s in pain, so he’ll do whatever he can until the last second to hide any pain from you. This is why it’s so important you remain proactive throughout your dog’s life span and incorporate supplements at the perfect moment. Supplements for joint support work alongside proper nutrition and exercise to keep your dog healthy and comfortable for as long as possible.

What is the Recommended Dosage?

For joint supplements, there are a variety of different options. You can purchase soft chews or capsules to incorporate into your dog’s food. Since the product types differ along with how much of each ingredient is included per serving, it’s best that you always follow the manufacturer’s recommended dosages. With most joint supplements for dogs, you’ll find this information directly on the packaging you receive but you can always go back online to refer to instructions for use and recommended dosages.

For many of the products we listed above, one soft chew per day may be all you need. However, some larger breeds may require an extra dose. In many cases, it can be as simple as one small chew per day. How much you give when starting your dog on a new joint supplement is also dependent on her condition. If you’re starting with preventive measures, you should be following the recommended dosage instructions on the packaging. However, there is something called a “loading dose” that may be more ideal for your dog if she is already dealing with some kind of joint condition. Since glucosamine is a primary active ingredient in supplements for dogs along with chondroitin sulfate, you might need to boost your dog’s glucosamine levels to help her cartilage repair process get a head start.

After the initial loading dose, you can return to the product’s recommended dosage. To make sure that you do the best for your dog, connect with your veterinarian to determine if a loading dose is necessary and if it is, to determine just how much of the joint supplement you need to give to start.

Conclusion

Healthy joints are a top priority when considering your dog’s longevity and comfort through old age. Though for some breeds, you need supplements that promote joint health early on, it’s never too late to get your pup started. Supplements to support a dog’s joints are formulated to make it easy for you to provide the support your dog needs with tasty treat-like chews. Even the pickiest of dogs will find a flavor she loves - from peanut butter to duck flavors to simple capsules you can open and mix right into their dog food, with so many high-quality products available to choose from, you’re sure to find the one your dog loves to take.

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