How Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and MSM Help Relieve Dog Pain
Dogs are friends, companions and guardians. They may walk on four legs and be covered with fur, but in many ways they are just like humans. Unfortunately, one of those similarities is that pets can experience painful hip problems dog arthritis, osteoarthritis. However, in recent years veterinary medicine has discovered the value of human supplements like glucosamine, Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) and chondroitin for dogs. Just like in humans, osteoarthritis results from wear and tear on the joints after years of repetitive use. Hip dysplasia, a common ailment in certain breeds of dog, is the result of a genetic malformation, but manifests similar symptoms.
Veterinarians recommend MSM, glucosamine and chondroitin for pets after their owners observe certain behaviors linked to dog arthritis. If your dog seems lethargic or has difficulty moving in normal ways, or if you notice your dog seeming less willing or able to participate in normal play activities, it may be time for a visit to the vet. Additionally, your dog may exhibit a visible limp or act as though he or she is in pain when being petted in certain areas. Again, compare this to the human reaction to ailments like arthritis or hip disorders like sciatica.
Best Remedies for arthritis in dogs and hip dysplasia
Glucosamine, MSM and chondroitin are all naturally occurring, which is why these substances are considered supplements rather than other pet medications. Glucosamine and chondroitin specifically appear in the fluid around the joints. When present, they promote smooth, natural movement. Production of these chemicals decreases as your dog ages. Eventually, the bones in the joints may begin to grind together worsening the dog arthritis. Over time, this creates the degenerative processes seen in osteoarthritis.
Veterinarians use glucosamine and chondroitin for dogs with hip dysplasia for similar effects, although the condition itself is not part of the aging process. Dogs with hip dysplasia are born with a misalignment that causes the bones to grind together from the time they are puppies. Because of this, the effects of hip dysplasia are similar to the effects of osteoarthritis.
MSM works differently than glucosamine and chondroitin for dogs suffering from these ailments. When naturally occurring in the body, MSM is a sulfer which serves to allow flexibility between proteins. Reduced production of MSM is also part of the natural aging process. Therefore, as a supplement, it helps replace what has been naturally lost, and is often given in conjunction with with glucosamine and chondroitin for dogs and humans suffering from arthritis caused by aging.
The fact that these are naturally occurring substances does lessen the potential danger to your dog. However, none of these supplements can cure osteoarthritis or hip dysplasia. Human studies have shown that this treatment has few or no side effects. MSM can cause reactions in human patients with sulfa drug allergies, but studies have yet to observe the same reaction in dogs.
In both dogs and humans, these substances are almost always given in combination when treating dog arthritis. The dual effects of promoting proper joint movement and relieving muscle pain create a cohesive treatment that has been shown in multiple studies to return normal, comfortable joint movement. As with any treatment, however, results may vary.