Q & A: Supplements for senior dogs

Q: My dog is getting older and I want to know if joint supplements are a good idea for senior dogs?

A: In the veterinary literature there are conflicting data on the efficacy of nutraceuticals. Of all these treatments for degenerative joint disease (DJD) in dogs, the use of long-chain omega-3 PUFA found in marine oils has shown the most evidence for clinical improvement. The recommended doses vary, so before using them you should consult with your veterinarian.

The evidence for the use of glucosamine and chondroitin supplementation for pets with DJD is conflicting, with one study showing clinical benefit with its use while other studies have shown no effect.

If your senior pet is on a good veterinary diet specifically formulated for joint support, then there is no need for supplements. Joint supplements are expensive, so rather spend the money on a good veterinary diet.

Dr Vanessa Mcclure, veterinarian


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