Many dogs struggle with arthritis and other mobility problems, the symptoms of arthritis range from being barely there to debilitating pain and immobility. Watching your pup struggle with canine arthritis can be very painful. If the cartilage in their joints is damaged, there isn’t much you can do to promote repair. Usually, you can only manage the symptoms.
Your dog’s diet can be a toxin or medicine. It can fuel or relieve their pain. With some awareness, you can start feeding your dog a diet that makes them more comfortable and promotes their well-being. Here are some diet tips for dogs with arthritis.
Stick to Natural Foods and Supplements
Natural foods and supplements are great for fighting inflammation. They can relieve the symptoms of dog arthritis. Contrary to what many dog owners might think, fruits and veggies aren’t just for people. They can help manage your dog’s arthritis pain as well. Here are a few options to include in your dog’s diet:
- Leafy green vegetables-kale, collard greens, and spinach
- Fiber-rich veggies-squash, sweet potato, and pumpkin
- Fatty fish-sardines, salmon, mackerel, and tuna
- Antioxidant-filled fruits-peeled apples, blueberries, and cantaloupe
- Vitamin-rich veggies- zucchini, broccoli, and cauliflowers
- Herbs and spices-cinnamon, fresh ginger, turmeric, parsley.
High-quality joint supplements have ingredients that lubricate your dog’s joints and promote cartilage growth. They can improve your dog’s general joint health.
Omega supplements reduce chronic inflation. They also promote your dog’s immunity, heart function, and brain health. Always seek expert recommendations if you need clarification about the best dog food.
Foods to Avoid
If you have a dog with arthritis, knowing the foods to feed them is just as important as knowing the foods you need to avoid. You must know the ingredients to avoid, especially with kibble and canned food. Preservatives and added sugars can cause painful inflammation. Here are a few foods to avoid:
A grain-free diet can help your dog fight arthritis pain. Processed commercial dog foods typically contain soy, rice, wheat, and other grains. They trigger fluctuation in your dog’s blood sugar and can cause swelling.
Getting rid of grains in your dog’s diet reduces inflammation. However, it would help if you spoke to your vet before making the change. Grain-free diets have attracted controversy in the past.
Fatty protein can be very detrimental to the well-being of your dog with arthritis. They can promote excessive weight gain making your dog’s condition worse. Unfortunately, over 50% of dogs in the United States are obese.
Although your dog needs protein to protect its joints and build muscle, excessive weight can exert excessive pressure on its joints. Feed them lean proteins like grass-fed meat, chicken, and turkey.
Although fatty fish like tuna and salmon have healthy omega-3 oils, you must strive to keep the calories down. Keeping your dog at its ideal weight is one of the most important things to do as the parent of a dog with arthritis. Even a slight bit of excess weight can make the pain worse.
Corn is a controversial food for dogs. It has a high carbohydrate content, and although it may be a quick energy source, it triggers inflammation. The effects of corn aren’t always immediate. However, you will likely notice their inflammation getting worse gradually.
Artificial Additives, Added Sugars, and Salts
Generally, highly processed foods are likely to cause inflammation. Manufactured dog foods are processed to some point. However, you should opt for options without added sugars, salts, or artificial additives. They are a recipe for inflammation. Reading the label on your dog food is the best way to ensure you aren’t harming them.
Omega-6 Fatty Acids
Most dogs that eat a commercial diet ingest plenty of omega-6 fatty acids. Oils like safflower, canola oils, sunflowers, and soybean are cheap and available in most pet foods.
Poultry and meat are rich in omega-6 as well. Keep them to a minimum if your dog has arthritis. The body converts omega-6 into arachidonic acid, which can make arthritis pain worse.
Omega-3 fatty acids produce hormones that can lower harmful low-grade chronic inflammation.
Avoid giving your dog oranges, pineapples, and other citrus fruits. Although they are generally safe, they are bad for dogs with arthritis and can aggravate their symptoms. However, lemon juice can be helpful if used in small doses.
Oranges are rich in vitamin C, which is a big bonus for people. However, dogs produce their own. You don’t need to add it to their diet especially if they struggle with arthritis.
There’s a lot you can do for your dog with arthritis. However, changing their diet is one of the most important things. The proper diet alleviates their symptoms and improves their quality of life. The best foods for your dog with arthritis include fatty fish, leafy green vegetables, and antioxidant-filled fruits. Avoid grains, citrus fruits, and corn.