The perfect time to introduce joint supplements for dogs to your canine’s life is the moment you bring him home.
Because our pets have a lot in common with us – they get the same diseases we do, they have the same injuries as we do, and they can feel pain and discomfort just like we do.
That’s why it’s so important to maintain their health – and that includes their joints.
As we age, our joints will weaken and we’ll experience a variety of symptoms: pain, inflammation, and a decrease in flexibility.
Dogs experience this too.
It’s important to consider dog joint supplements to help them maintain their mobility, energy, and a high quality of life.
But here’s the thing – Your dog doesn’t need to be old to need joint health supplements.
This is why it’s very important to include them in their diet, and start caring for your pup’s joints from the time they’re a puppy.
Now you’re probably wondering, “What are the best dog joint supplements?”
There are dozens of joint health supplements on the market, but not all of them are created equally.
Fortunately for you, we’ve done the work for you.
We’ve found and reviewed the best joint supplements for dogs in 2021.
Keep reading to find out more.
Best Top Joint Supplements: Our Top Picks
☞ Best Overall: Nutramax Laboratories Dasuquin with MSM Soft Chews
☞ Runner up: Zesty Paws Glucosamine for Dogs
☞ Best for Dogs of All Sizes and Breeds: Doggie Dailies Glucosamine for Dogs
☞ Best Organic: Infinite Hip & Joint Supplement for Dogs
☞ Best Natural: The Missing Link Original All Natural Superfood Dog Supplement
☞ Best Liquid: Glucosamine for Dogs Joint Supplement with Chondroitin MSM
Understanding Dog Joint Health: Overview
Joints are a part of a dog’s musculoskeletal system. They support the body and permit movements.
Joints are located at the part where two bones meet. A shock-absorbing cushion called cartilage covers the ends of the bones. Also, this cushion is filled up with a lubricating fluid that allows easy movements and protects bones from wearing out.
Furthermore, this protective cushion and bones are attached with connective tissues called ligaments.
Like any other living thing, aging takes a toll on a dog’s health as well. And, the adversely affected area is their joint. As the dogs age, their ligament can degenerate, and the fluid can get thin.
Their joints wear down. They change shape or get chipped.
All of these situations are painful.
How Dog Joint Supplements Help
Dog joint supplements have nutrients that make up the cartilage, lubricate the joints, and provide them the cushioning they lack.
When dog joint supplements are administered, the subject’s body takes these nutrients as building blocks. As a response, cartilage rebuilding begins; elasticity of cartilages and ligaments increases, and inflammation and pain – if there was any – starts diminishing.
It takes anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks to really see a difference.
Benefits of Joint Supplements
In case you are wondering, are the dog joint supplements of any benefit to my dog?
The quick answer is YES they are.
The changes you will hopefully notice in your dog before and after introducing him to supplements are:
- Boost in His Energy: it’s sad to see your active fur fellow turning into a lazy being. The first benefit you’ll reap by including supplements is, your dog will regain his long-lost energy.
- Healthy Skin and Shining Coat: In dogs, dry and itchy skin and dull coats mean a downfall in health. Besides dealing with joint issues, many dog joint supplements include ingredients that take care of your dog’s overall health. Such ingredients bring freshness to their skin and glow to their coat.
- Improved Immunity: Supplements contain vitamins, fatty acids, and essential nutrients that help improve the immunity system of your pooch.
Common Signs of Joint Pain in Dogs
If your dog is refusing to go for the evening walk he once used to enjoy it’s a warning sign that something is WRONG.
Like humans, dogs can’t speak up about their aching joints, so you will have to keep your eyes peeled and notice the change in their physical condition.
Some common signs of joint pain in dogs can be:
- Reluctance to get up in the morning
- Less stamina during playtime
- Clumsy movements
- Stiffness in joints
- Unwillingness to jump and climb stairs
- Dislike petting
- Unexpected grumpy behavior
- Lifting one leg in the air
Causes of Joint Pain in Dogs
Sadly, there is no one easy-to-escape reason that causes joint pain in dogs. You’ll have to look upon several factors that might cause joint pain in your doggo and figure out the culprit yourself.
Some common factors are such as:
1. Genetically Inherited and Developmental Conditions:
Some dog breeds are susceptible to joint-related issues like Hip and Elbow Dysplasia and similar conditions. Therefore, they can suffer from such disease by birth or in their developmental stages as a result of their vulnerable genetic makeup.
However, growing age or any terrible accident can also invite hip and joint pain in dogs.
2. Cruciate Ligament Problems:
The most common Arthritis causing problems, Cruciate Ligament issues, wear out and degenerate the dog’s ligaments as he grows old. This situation, eventually, leads to Arthritis and severe joint pain.
3. Metabolic Disease:
A certain type of metabolic disease, a subdivision of hemophilia, can induce excessive bleeding in the joints and can cause Arthritis-like symptoms.
4. Other Diseases:
Other diseases like Lyme disease, Obesity, Cancer, Hyperparathyroidism, and Rheumatoid Arthritis can also perpetrate Arthritis and joint pains in dogs.
When to consider a hip and joint supplement?
Dogs are predisposed to issues like hip and joint pain and related diseases. So, it’s mandatory to bring in something safe and healthy to make their lives better, right?
National Animal Supplement Council (NASC) recommends starting them at an early age and believes they are a risk-free way to prevent hip and joint diseases.
Why start early?
Because once the joints are damaged they are harder to cure without surgery.
The 6 Best Joint Supplement for Dogs - Reviews
We carefully selected plenty of the best hip and joint dog supplements. After deep research and stalking through the thousands of reviews of the users, we are confident that these are the best dog joint supplements of all.
Here’s the list of these products and their reviews.
1. Best Overall: Nutramax Laboratories Dasuquin with MSM Soft Chews
Whenever a concerned dog parent visits a vet to address his doggo’s hip and joint-related issues, do you know what the first choice of every doctor is?
Yes, it’s none other than Nutramax Dasuquin.
The Naturamax Dasuquin works by blocking the harmful enzymes wreaking havoc on cartilages and supports cartilage structure.
- Developed with a veterinary formula
- Contains Glucosamine, MSM, Chondroitin sulfate, Soybean, Avocado, and Green Tea Extract as active ingredients.
- Available in two categories; For small to medium dogs under 60lbs and for large dogs over 60lbs
- Purchasable in 84 or 150 soft chew tablet bag
- Money back guarantee
- Takes about 4 to 6 weeks for dogs to respond, though some pets respond much sooner.
- This product can be used to support joint cartilage in dogs following surgery.
- Vet recommended brand
- Easy to administer
- Eases joint pain and inflammation
- Stimulates production of cartilage components
- Boosts maximum joint health
- Flavorless – finical eaters might not eat them
2. Runner Up: Zesty Paws Glucosamine for Dogs
Do you want to bring your pup’s happy wiggles back? Zesty Paws Hip and joint dog supplements can help.
It not only takes care of your dog’s joints but also strengthens his overall health by promoting cartilages with its yummy chew bites.
- Features a combination of Glucosamine and Chondroitin to support joint health
- Also includes OptiMSM – the premium form of MSM that undergoes a purifying distillation process – to help your dog’s muscles attain the flexibility they need
- Extra ingredients that strengthen the functionality of the supplements are Vitamin C and Vitamin E
- Comes in three best-tasting flavors; Duck, Chicken, and Bacon – 90 chews per bag!
- Accelerates mobility
- Provides additional support to cartilage
- Lubricates joints and improves joint function
- Good for all dog breeds and sizes
- Easy to chew and digest
- Come in one size only
3. Best for Dogs of All Sizes and Breeds: Doggie Dailies Glucosamine for Dogs
It’s heartbreaking to see your high-jumper turning into a couch potato. Isn’t it?
Don’t let joint pain restrict your pet’s mobility. Instead, give your fur-friend something healthy and tasty like Doggie Dailies supplements and probably you will see your canine jumping for joy soon.
- Loaded with Glucosamine HCl, Chondroitin, MSM, Yucca Schidigera, CoQ10 (coenzyme q10), and Hyaluronic Acid (HA); Plus Omega 3 & 6, Vitamin C & E, and Salmon Oil & Cod Liver Oil for skin and coat health
- Available in two yum flavors; chicken and peanut butter – 225 soft chews in each bottle!
- Feature a palm oil-free formula that may help lubricate joints, and maintain cartilage and connective tissue
- Is made by using cold-press extrusion that helps preserve the integrity of the ingredients to ensure maximum potency
- Easy to give
- Maintains hip and joint health and normal activity level
- Safe for all breeds, ages, and sizes
- 100% money-back guarantee
- Gastrointestinal issues may appear in dogs with sensitive stomachs
4. Best Organic Dog Joint Supplement: Infinite Hip & Joint Supplement for Dogs
Turmeric is a magic cure. It has been used for inflammation and alleviating pains for thousands of years.
If you want to bring your aging dog suffering from joint pain back to life, give a shot to Infinite supplements. They, with the goodness of turmeric, ease inflammation and restore your pet’s cartilages to make him more mobile.
- The top-rated natural supplements come in the tasty beef-liver flavor
- Available in two forms, Powder and chewable (90 Chews per bottle)
- Contains Organic Turmeric, Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and MSM as active ingredients
- Features the most powerful and proven natural anti-inflammatory ingredient – Organic Turmeric – to alleviate Arthritis, improve heart health, and aid in metabolism
- Has human-grade ingredients
- No side effects
- Suitable for all dog breeds and sizes
- Lifetime money-back guarantee
- Comes in one flavor only
5. Best Natural Dog Joint Supplement: The Missing Link Original All Natural Superfood Dog Supplement
You are trying your best to give your pet the best possible nutritious value. But he still suffers from joint pain. It indicates that something is missing in his diet.
To fill up that missing link try your hands on The Missing Link Dog Supplement and never worry about his falling joint health.
- Packed with joint and bone health supporting elements like Glucosamine, dietary fiber, phytonutrients, and Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids to promote healthy joints, flexibility, skin, coat, and sustained energy levels.
- Extra ingredients to support heart health include fresh ground flaxseed, taurine, and nutritional yeast
- Instead of using any sourcing or cooking process, these supplements are cold-pressed to retain all the vital nutrients
- Comes in powdered form and is NASC or AAFCO certified
- Easy to administer
- Good for all dog sizes and breeds
- No artificial preservatives or fillers
- Supports your dog’s overall health
- Can cause allergic reactions
6. Best Liquid Joint Supplement for Dogs: Glucosamine for Dogs Joint Supplement with Chondroitin MSM
Tired of trying to give those big pills to your dog?
Taking care of your pet’s joint health is more than necessary, but those hard-to-swallow pills make life tough.
Don’t struggle more with administering medicines to your dog, opt for this liquid supplement. Drizzle it over your pet’s food and enjoy watching him nibble his food and get healthy.
- Contains Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and MSM as active ingredients to help prevent Arthritis in younger dogs
- Feature an easily absorbed natural substance – Aloe vera juice – that stimulates the production of proteoglycans and helps maintain health and resiliency of joints and connective tissues
- Supports joint function and flexibility
- Easy to give
- Some buyers noticed a chemical smell in the product
Keeping Your Dog’s Joints Healthy
The excellent way to keep your dog’s joints healthy is to ensure preventive measures.
No doubt, there are situations when even prevention is not helpful, such as genetic occurrences.
You can give your dog a balanced diet to provide the nutritious value he requires. Plus, you can also maintain an exercise routine. But don’t overdo it!
Keep a check on your dog’s breed history.
Furthermore, ensure that your dog is not obese.
You can navigate through different products promoting joint health. Gather queries you might want to discuss with your vet. And never skip your doggo’s regular vet checkups to keep your dog’s joints healthy before it’s too late.
Choosing a Supplement: What to Look for When Purchasing Dog Joint Supplements?
When we have so many brands available it can be tough to choose the best joint supplement for dogs.
Below are some of the considerations when you choose a supplement for your furry.
1. Supplement Type:
First thing first, you need to determine what type of supplement will suit the best to your dog. Some common forms of dog supplements available are:
- tablets and capsules,
- soft chews,
- liquid supplements.
Tablets and capsules have the highest amount of required ingredients but they are useful only if your pet eats them. Most of the dogs hate taking medicines.
Soft chews are the most popular form of dog supplements since they come in delicious flavors. The only downside is they may be packed with unnecessary ingredients.
The ideal type of dog supplements is either liquids or powders. Such supplements are easy to absorb and administer.
But the catch?
Your dog may not like their taste and may not eat the food they are mixed in.
2. Active Ingredients:
Dog joint supplements must have active ingredients that support and enhance their mobility to lead a healthy life.
The top five ingredients to look for in any dog joint supplements are:
- Glucosamine Hydrochloride – to stimulate the growth of cartilage
- Chondroitin Sulfate – to inhibit enzymes that destroy cartilage
- Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) – to relieve pain and inflammation
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids – to contribute to healthy joint lubrication
- Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables (ASUs) – to safeguard cartilage
3. Easy Dosing:
Select a supplement that is easy to give. If your pet won’t take it, how can it be effective?
4. Other Additives:
Some dog joint supplements are meant for promoting overall health and they contain many beneficial additives, vitamins, and minerals, for instance.
The average cost of the dog joint supplements is between $20 to $50. The pricing may vary depending on factors like packaging, size, supplement type, and more.
Ingredients to Look for in Joint Supplements for Dogs
Before we tell what ingredients you should look for in a dog joint supplement, we think, it will be way easier to point out the ingredients they shouldn’t have.
Without further ado, let’s have a look at some of the must-not-have ingredients:
- Artificial flavors and colors
Now when you are done with the elements you need to avoid, note some of the must-have ingredients:
- Hyaluronic Acid (HA)
- Co-enzyme Q10
- Sodium Hyaluronate
- Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables (ASUs)
- Yucca schidigera
- Green-lipped Mussels
- Salmon oil
- Codfish oil
- Claw root extract
- Boswellia serrata
These ingredients regenerate cartilage, lubricate joints, and promote joint health.
7 FAQs about joint supplement for dogs
When should I start giving my dog joint supplements?
As most of the dogs' joint supplements aim to maintain the dog's joint health for a lifetime and have no side effects, you can start them from an early age.
However, speaking to your vet is the best approach before opting for any medicine.
Should I check with a veterinarian to make sure my dog needs supplements?
Of course, you should. Talking to a vet will alleviate your concerns and will help you pick a dog supplement with the right combination of active ingredients.
Are there supplements in dog food?
Yes, most commercial dog foods claim that their product contains supplements. The smart move here is to read their labels and note down the supplementary value they provide. Then, compare it to your dog's requirement.
If they fulfill your dog's needs, that's great. If not, seek some additional sources.
Do I need different supplements for my two dogs?
Two dogs mean two individuals. How can the health needs of two different dogs be the same? Keeping their individuality in mind, you should give them different supplements as per their breed type, size, and age.
Do joint supplements for dogs really work?
Yes, by all means. The sole purpose of formulating joint supplements is to enhance joint health and reduce related issues.
Do dog joint supplements have side effects?
Not really. However, dogs with sensitive stomachs can experience gastrointestinal issues or some allergic reactions.
Are joint supplements safe?
Normally, dog joint supplements feature natural ingredients. So, they are safe. However, if your dog has some certain medical condition, leave the decision of including the joint supplement in your dog's routine to your vet.
What is the best natural supplement for a dog's joints?
The best natural supplement for a dog’s joints is The Missing Link Original All Natural Superfood Dog Supplement because it's choked with joint revitalizing ingredients.
How do I know my dog has joint pain?
If you notice your dog doesn’t wake up with his normal bounce and lacks energy, be wary of his condition. Moreover, you can also notice changes in his body language while you groom him. He might start yelping when you touch his certain joint.
What if my dog has an allergic reaction to the supplement?
Normally, it doesn’t happen. But if the rarest possible occurrence takes place, discontinue the supplement, and seek your vet’s advice for further treatment.
Can my dog take human vitamins?
No! Your dog has a different anatomy than humans therefore, his needs also vary. Plus, human vitamins can contain components that are dangerous for dogs, but healthy for humans. So, always rely on vitamins that use specific pet-approved formulas.
Conclusion: Our Top Pick
Make joint supplements a MUST-HAVE part of your dog’s diet if you are ready to go the extra mile to keep them healthy from head-to-tail.
It’s NEVER easy to decide on one best joint supplement for your dog, but here we are making a quick recommendation to help you make your mind.
We find Nutramax Laboratories Dasuquin with MSM Soft Chews the most outperforming dog joint supplement of all.
Why the tasteless supplements? You may wonder.
Nutramax Dasuquin is the top choice of many veterinarians. The patented supplements provide superior relief, and it ONLY takes less than a week for the first signs of improvement to show.
Yep, quick as that! And your fur-bestie deserves nothing less.
If lack of taste seems a problem, the solution is disguising the medicine into your canine’s best-loved food.
You are good to go now!