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How can diet help arthritis?
What you feed your dog is always of utmost importance, but if it has a health condition like arthritis, pet food can make an even bigger difference in its overall well-being and quality of life. Arthritis affects about 20 percent of pets over age 1, and can make it difficult for them to enjoy activities the way they could when they had no joint pain. There are a number of joint supplements and pet drugs available to give your pooch some pain relief, but one of the best ways to help is through diet. Many foods these days are formulated to cater to certain conditions, but here's what you should look for in nutrition for your arthritic pooch.
Omega-3. Omega-3 fatty acids have been proven in a number of studies to improve signs of pain because they reduce inflammation in the joints.
Glucosamine/chondroitin. Pet food that has added chondroitin and glucosamine for dogs can be hugely beneficial because these ingredients have been proven to help joints make new cartilage and repair damage in arthritic joints.
Antioxidants. Antioxidants like vitamin C and E, selenium, methyl-sulfonyl-methane (MSM) denosyl (SAMe) have also been found to have benefits to a number of pets with arthritis.
Your dog's diet is also important in terms of maintaining a healthy weight. Controlling calories is key because obesity only puts added weight on the sensitive joints. In addition, it has been proven that pets that maintain an ideal weight throughout life have a lower risk of developing arthritis that overweight pets. You might want to choose a weight-loss pet food like Petcurean Now! Grain Free Senior/Weight Management Dry Dog Food. Not only is it specially formulated to help dogs shed pounds, it has high levels of antioxidants and added glucosamine and chondroitin. Candidae Grain Free Pure Elements Dry Dog Food is another good option because it contains natural sources of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
If you don't think your pooch is getting enough joint support from its food, you may want to talk to your veterinarian about adding a supplement like Super Pure Omega 3 or Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Pet to your dog's diet.
Beside food, you can help your dog deal with arthritis pain with medication like Previcox or Metacam, and make sure it has pet products like Dog Steps with 2 Steps to help it get up and down from the bed or couch.