Arthritis plagues many older dogs, or even younger dogs with previous injuries or existing joint problems. Stresses or trauma to the joint can cause the joint cartilage to degenerate; eventually, even the underlying bone can degenerate. Technically, here's what happens: The synovial membrane surrounding the joint becomes inflamed and the bone develops small bony outgrowths called osteophytes. These changes cause the joint to stiffen, have decreased ranged of motion and to become painful. Once these changes occur, they cannot be reversed. The key is prevention.
Prevention involves a number of common-sense things: Keep your dog's weight down, attend to any injuries when they occur, and maintain a program of exercise. Once signs of arthritis occur, low-impact exercise such as walking and swimming are best.
Prevention also involves diet and supplements. Polysulfated glycosaminoglycan increases the compressive resilience of cartilage. Glucosamine stimulates the synthesis of collagen, and may help rejuvenate cartilage to some extent. Chondroitin sulfate helps to shield cartilage from destructive enzymes.
Glucosamine chondroitin supplements have became a staple in the treatment of mild arthritis and the prevention of advanced arthritis. We suggest their use in large breed dogs predisposed to joint problems beginning at only a couple of years of age, and in any dog with an existing or previous joint disease or injury. In cases of advanced arthritis, your dog will probably need additional pain medication from your veterinarian---but with good care, the goal is to postpone, or even prevent, that from happening.
Our wide variety of trusted joint health supplements are specially formulated to protect and promote your dog's healthy joints.