7 Mistakes Most People Make in Choosing a Joint Supplement for Their Dog

The Seven Major Mistakes People Make in Choosing a Dog Joint Supplement

Do you Make Any of the 7 Major Mistakes in Choosing a Dog Joint Supplement? You may want to read this…

Yes, there are seven major mistakes and you probably have made a few of them. It’s not the end of the world, but you should figure these out before you spend too much money. This short article will go through those mistakes and you’ll be able to evaluate whether the joint supplement that your giving your dog is valuable or just a waste of time and money.

Mistake number one:  Do you give your dog a supplement that induces joint relief instead of repair to those damaged joints?

Almost all the products available to reduce joint damage in the canine contain glucosamines in chondroitins and other elements to reduce progressive degeneration of the joint.

What they don’t contain is something to repair the joint. What they have are elements that decrease or slow down the progressive degeneration of the joint but don’t provide elements that actively rehabilitate the joint function and structure. Boswellia, green seed extract and hyaluronic acid are good examples of the elements in a joint supplement that induces active
repair of the joint. If your supplement doesn’t have the basic joint repair elements, you should find another supplement.

There are number of other things that are actively involved in rebuilding the joint. Removing active joint degenerating compounds in the diet or other sources of joint injury is a good start. Relying on the body to actively pick up and repair ongoing and extensive damage is something the body will do naturally to some extent, but with proper supplementation, you can accelerate the promotion of joint repair.

Providing elements in a nutritional supplement that help accelerate the repair process is the reason that some nutritional supplements work so much faster and so much more effectively in rehabilitating normal joint function.

Mistake number two:  Do you know that glucosamine in almost all joint supplements never actually repairs your dog’s cartilage and bone?

Is been assumed (incorrectly) for the last 30 years that the intracellular cement substance that holds cells together (which is glucosamine sulfate) is elemental to the repair of damaged joint tissues. This is true, however, since this substance is present in just about any multi-cellular foodstuff that we consume, glucosamine a readily available in our diet and really doesn’t need to be supplemented as a raw material.

It is known however, that increasing the amount of glucosamines in a nutritional supplement will, over a period of time, decrease clinical symptomology involving joint disease in all mammals. This is true. The mistake that is made is assuming that supplementing glucosamine goes to the repair of joint tissues, cartilage, and bone. That is not how glucosamines provide joint relief.

The fact is, glucosamines work by other means of binding naturally occurring elements in the food (Lectins mostly, see below in mistake number four), and will not allow those in chemicals in the diet to destroy the joints in the first place.

In other words, glucosamines work in the gut to absorb the bad stuff in the food that would tear apart joints. It’s always been assumed that we absorb glucosamines in the system and they go right toward joints and make them all better. That is not true. When glucosamines are complex with radioisotopes, and fed to dogs and tracked throughout the body, it is found that they do not necessarily go to the joints any more than they go to any other connective tissue of the body. They are distributed evenly throughout the body.

Glucosamines then, do not actively repair the damaged joint.

Mistake number three:  Do you buy joint supplements with Chondroitin Sulfate?

Most every joint supplement has in it a product called Chondroitin sulfate. It is so common in joint supplements the people think that it needs to be there. This is not true.

Chondroitin sulfate is a huge molecule. The body cannot absorb it in any fashion. It needs to be torn apart and digested down to glucosamine sulfate before the body can actively use it.

So, providing chondroitin sulfate in a supplement is essentially providing glucosamine sulfate which is clinically beneficial. That’s the good news.

The bad news is only about 20% of chondroitin sulfate ever gets broken down in the digestive process and absorbed by the body. That means it 80% of it is pooped out the backend of the dog and is essentially a waste of space in a nutritional supplement.

Another mistake, is that people think that chondroitin sulfate is added to the mix as a beneficial element. The real fact is that it’s merely a contamination by-product of the process used to create glucosamine sulfate.Usually shrimp shells and other parts are processed to get a great big vat of white powder that is a combination of glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin sulfate. Then, a rather expensive process of electrophoresis is used to separate out reagent grade glucosamine sulfate from the contaminant chondroitin sulfate.

A lot of nutritional supplements do not bother to take the chondroitin sulfate contaminant out with this process, because it is an expensive process. So, instead, many supplementmanufacturers don’t bother with the expense of processing out an element that will only be 20% absorbed, and hail this by-product ingredient as a main (and important) component to their formulation. It is disingenuous, but serves as a cost saving device and a way to add filler to their product, for a customer base that thinks, “more must be better”.

Mistake number four:  Do you understand the purpose Glucosamine? And… What are Lectins?

Lectins, or group of compounds present in almost all foods that we feed our pets. They are naturally occurring insecticides that protect grains and vegetables from crop infestations. They attack the insect by melting holes in the intestinal tract of the bug. Lectins are present in all grains, nuts, potatoes, and most vegetables. They are also present in animal proteins, where the animal has been feed grain that have lectins in them.

Lectins affect our own digestive system but on a much lower level because of our size. Chronic inflammatory bowel disease, “Leaky gut”, malabsorption syndromes, dietary allergies, and many other chronic gastrointestinal problems may very well have lectins as underlying source.

In the dog, Lectins function to punch holes in the gut wall. This allows them access to the bloodstream, producing what is known as a “leaky gut”, and then in the bloodstream they can attack the synovial of the joints producing a phenomenon we term as “leaky joint”.

Inside the joint, lectins continually attack the integrity of all the cells of the joint and by itself create an allergic reaction in the cell that produces an auto-immune cascade of degenerative arthritis. Lectins are bad.

The good news is that glucosamine sulfate, when it is found in the digestive process, actively grabs onto the lectins and prevents them from damaging the gut wall and getting into the bloodstream. This action and thus prevents them from getting to the joint.

This is the benefit of glucosamine sulfate in the diet. Therefore, glucosamine sulfate should be given as a supplement.

Mistake number five:   Did you know that your dog most likely has a spine issue vs. a joint issue?

When we see our beloved pets struggling to get up, limping on one leg, etc., we think that they must in fact have joint disease. We blame the joints of the knees, hips, shoulders, and elbow.

The joints very often have osteoarthritic changes in them that we can see on x-ray and MRI; however, they’re rarely the actual cause of the animal’s difficulty in moving and pain.

It is incredibly important to realize that almost all peripheral joint disease is caused by a primary spinal nerve joint problem.

Osteoarthritic changes in the knee for example, always have a primary problem that holds that condition in place in the lower lumbar area of the spine.

Treating the knee with anti-inflammatories, and joint supplements have benefits for the inflammation and that ensues at that joint level, however the majority of benefit from a canine joint supplement actually improves and rehabilitates the spinal joint that holds that problem in place.

Whereas we may see minimal or no reduction of osteoarthritic changes in the peripheral joints, reduction of spinal joint disease is elemental in restoring function, decreasing pain, and increasing strength.

Essentially, the reason to give a canine joint supplement is to keep the joints of the spine as healthy as possible so we don’t end up with peripheral joint disease.

It is also important to note that the majority of spinal joint disease goes unrecognized by x-ray, MRI, or even clinical evaluation.

So canine joint supplements are most effective in treating spinal joint disease as a means to allow effective repair of peripheral joint disease and also is elemental in extending the animals lifespan. (Please see mistake number six below)

Mistake number six:  Do you consider the other ingredients of your dog’s joint supplements, beyond just the Glucosamine?

Now that you understand the role the glucosamine plays in removing lectins from the digestive process, what else do you think should be found in the supplement to actually promote the repair of the damage that the previous lectins created? When trying to evaluate a canine joint supplement, it is import to read the guaranteed analysis and determine whether or not it has the elements in it that are effective for joint disease.

Unfortunately, the concentration and bioavailability of the ingredients may not be depicted. Additionally, the ingredients may not work together synergistically in the supplement to resolve canine joint disease.

Bioavailability, efficacy, and synergistic action with other elements in the supplement are all very important aspects of an effective canine joint supplement.

Boswellia Serata needs to be in any supplement that seeks to actually promote a repair process in the joints. Antioxidants such as grape seed extract (which is readily available, non-toxic, and inexpensive) is an effective free radical scavenger and antioxidant and should be in your dog’s joint supplement, or something like it.Green-lipped mussel is a product that actively engages in the rehabilitation of cell membrane structure. Since lectin’s and other elements in the diet actively attacked the structures, this product will actively repair the holes that are created in the membranes by those elements.

Hyaluronic acid is often added as a means to optimize joint fluid and also rehabilitate the matrix that suspends the cartilage cells at the end plates of bones. Hyaluronic acid is often not in a joint supplement. Other elements such as MSM, celery seed, and gingerroot can be added, but it’s important that they are added at the proper levels and in the proper forms such that they do not compromise any of the other active elements of the supplement. There is a lot of chemistry and physiology that needs to be understood in order to formulate and effective joint health
supplement that actively engages to reduce the elements responsible for the destruction of the joints, but all provides elements that engage to promote the repair of the joint at the same time.

Mistake number seven:   Do you still buy dog supplements in hard-pill or capsule form instead of a tasty treat?

An efficient and effective canine joint supplement should be in a highly palatable soft chew form. Glucosamine and chondroitin joint supplements have been classically placed in capsule form. The powder is mechanically placed in a capsule that is dissolved in the stomach and the nutritional products get into the system in the got. This is fine for nutritional supplements that are available to humans who know to take pills. Usually with a glass of water to help the medicine go down.

In the canine however, it is necessary to jam that pill down the dog’s throat.

Most dog owners give their pet a treat of some sort once a day. This is the answer to making sure the dog gets the supplement. You need to make it a treat.

An efficient and effective canine joint supplement should be in a soft chew form. It should be highly palpable. We should be able to toss it at our animal’s feet and have them snarf it down with tail wagging. It should be in a form that is easy for the pet owner to store and dose.

Additionally, since not all dogs are created equal, or weigh the same, it is important that the pet owner has a simple way to adjust the dose of the supplement by simply splitting the product in half to dose a smaller animal. You can’t really do that with a capsule.

Our supplement allows the dog owner to easily break the supplement in half and thereby adjust the dosage. Being able to effortlessly reward our dog with a delectable soft chew treat daily, that just happens to be an incredibly effective and inexpensive joint supplement, is the ultimate choice.


The above seven mistakes are problems that we see routinely in the veterinary field. The problems associated with canine joint supplements are held in place by common misconceptions made about the supplements.

The solution to the seven mistakes most commonly made when purchasing a joint supplement for a dog, is Dr. Bill’s Glucosamine Boswellia Plus Joint Formula, in a highly palatable soft chew treat like form that can be given easily and daily for both acute and chronic problems.


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