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Resveratrol for Dog Arthritis Management

Resveratrol for Dog Arthritis Management

Resveratrol, a type of bioflavonoid produced by several plants when they are attacked by bacteria or fungi, has been the subject of many clinical tests, particularly its anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. It has been observed that this bioflavonoid can lower blood sugar levels and also has a brilliant effect on the cardiovascular system. It truly is no surprise that resveratrol is popular as a nutritional supplement.

Resveratrol Benefits: The Fight Against Dog Arthritis and More

Despite the limited data about the effects of resveratrol in dogs, in these few trials, it has been shown that resveratrol was beneficial to dogs. Evidently resveratrol also assists in bodyweight management. It has in fact beewnshown to improve the life span of animals trialled on resveratrol.

A promising facet of resveratrol research in dogs is its potential to prevent or slow particular kinds of cancer in dogs. In experiments performed by the National Cancer Institute, resveratrol benefits dogs thanks to its ability to prevent cancer. Another beneficial property of resveratrol is its ability to suppress inflammation. Subsequently, vets are recommending the use of resveratrol supplements as a remedy for dog arthritis. Apart from clinical studies, there are a lot of testimonies from dog owners who claim that when their dogs were given resveratrol they became leaner, more alert and more energetic.

Resveratrol: The Bottom line

One of the more trusted resveratrol dietary supplements available in the market is Source Naturals Resveratrol 200. Source Naturals Resveratrol 200 contains 200 mg of pure resveratrol. It also contains Red Wine and Polygonum cuspidatum root extract. Before choosing to use Source Naturals Resveratrol 200 always consult the vet first. While the supplement contains only 10 mg of red wine extract, you will need to observe how the dog responds to the product. Do not forget that grapes are toxic to dogs, so of course if the puppy experiences diarrhea, abdominal pain or stops eating, stop administering the product or service and seek advice from your veterinarian. However, no reports have suggested.

A User Guide for Antiox-10: Dog Arthritis Disease Modifier

Cells are the basic building blocks of the body. When the cells are not healthy or are attacked by a bacteria or virus can lead to disease. Dog arthritis is a disease that attacks the cartilage tissue in the joints. In arthritic dogs, chondrocytes (the cells in the cartilage matrix) are not able to cope with the rate of tissue destruction.

So it is important that dog arthritis treatments are concerned with the management of joint pain and inflammation as well as protecting chondrocytes from the damaging effects of the oxidation process. More vets are now recommending the use of potent antioxidants in an effort to protect chondrocytes and promote cartilage repair.

Antioxidants in Dog Arthritis Treatment

Antioxidants are compounds produced by plants or animals that protect their cells from the oxidation process. Free radicals are oxygen atoms that have an odd number of electrons. This can cause dangerous chemical reactions in cells, which can compromise the cell’s DNA. Antioxidants such as vitamins A, C and E prevent these dangerous chemical reactions from occurring.

Although animals are able to produce antioxidants, the best sources are plant antioxidants, called bioflavanoids. These plant antioxidants have been observed to have stronger antioxidant properties than those of vitamins C and E. They also are anti-allergic, anti-microbial and anti-cancer.

In clinical trials, bioflavanoids can reduce inflammation by preventing cell adhesion (a process that leads to inflammation), promote cartilage growth through collagen repair, and maintaining nitric oxide (a type of free radical) in harmless amounts in the body.

Many vets prefer to use Antiox-10. The product contains resveratrol, a type of bioflavanoid found in grapes seed extract. Resveratrol has many benefits. Studies have shown that it prevents growth of cancer cells and apoptosis (programmed cell death). Resveratrol also helps strengthen the bones, prevent tooth decay, as well as protecting the skin from ultraviolet damage.

Antiox-10 for dogs is specifically formulated and is good for the dog’s skin and immune and circulatory systems. A current trend now is for vets to recommend the use of Antiox-10 for the treatment of dog arthritis.

The standard loading dose is two capsules per ten pounds of the dog’s body weight for seven to ten days. Then reduce the dose to one capsule per ten pounds for the maintenance dose.

Safe Dog Arthritis Pain Management with D-Phenylalanine

Dietary supplements are gaining more attention especially in the treatment of dog arthritis. Examples of such dietary supplement are the ones containing D-Phenylalanine, which is an amino acid found in plants, bacteria and milk. D-Phenylalanine has analgesic properties because it is able to promote the body’s production of endorphins. As a result, D-Phenylalanine supplements are now being utilized in dog arthritis treatment plans.

D-Phenylalanine vs. NSAIDs

Dog arthritis is a chronic disease, which leads to gradual erosion of the cartilage tissue in joints. In its advanced stages, “bone to bone” contact occurs. This is a very painful condition that could render a dog immobile.

Dog arthritis still does not have a cure, and dog arthritis treatment can only focus on the management of pain and inflammation, and the rehabilitation of damaged cartilage tissue. Normally, in the management of dog arthritis pain and inflammation, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are used. These prescription medications are very potent and can give a suffering animal instant relief.

However more vets are expressing their concern about the safety of NSAIDs, particularly when used in the longterm treatment of dog arthritis. These drugs alleviate inflammation by inhibiting pro-inflammatory COX-enzymes, but these same enzymes also have vital bodily functions. COX-enzymes help form the protective lining of the stomach wall. They also are important in the production of healthy blood platelets and are needed in the maintenance of proper blood circulation in the kidneys.

This means that the use of NSAIDs could potentially lead to gastro-intestinal damage, blood thinning and kidney failure, particularly if the pet is not being monitored properly.

D-Phenylalanine may not be as potent and fast-acting; nevertheless, it is far safer. D-Phenylalanine supplements are safe to use in the long-term, and can even be used alongside a painkiller or an NSAID to reinforce the prescription drug’s strength. This can lead to a lower and safer dosage of NSAIDs.

Giving Your Dog D-Phenylalanine

Before giving your dog D-Phenylalanine supplements, make sure that you have talked to your vet and that he or she has given the go ahead. As mentioned earlier, D-Phenylalanine is safe but as a precautionary measure, it should not be given to dogs that are lactating or pregnant, dogs with high blood pressure or dogs being treated with anti-depressants.

One of the most recommended brands out in the market is Doctor’s Best D-Phenylalanine. It is sold in capsule form available in 400, 500 and 600 mg potencies.

Safely Manage Dog Arthritis Pain with D-Phenylalanine

Dog arthritis is a crippling disease. When the progress of the disease is left unchecked, it can lead to “bone to bone” contact. This can be a very painful for the arthritic dog as there is no longer enough cartilage protecting the bone.

Dog arthritis treatment has two main objectives: (1) pain and inflammation management and (2) joint cartilage rehabilitation. In most treatment plans, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDS are used in joint pain and inflammation management.

NSAIDs are a group of drugs that inhibit the action of COX-enzymes. These enzymes are responsible for the body’s inflammatory response; however, they are also necessary for the protective lining of the stomach, blood platelet production and proper blood circulation of the kidneys.

NSAID Alternatives

The use of NSAIDs is the standard practice in the management pain and inflammation caused by dog arthritis. Unfortunately, NSAIDs have side effects that can be dangerous for some dogs. Hence, more vets are now formulating dog arthritis treatment plans that do not solely rely on NSAIDs or other prescription drugs.

Many vets are now stressing the importance of early detection. When dog arthritis is treated in its early stages, there is no need for the use of NSAIDs. Usually treatment plans for early or mild dog arthritis include dietary supplements.


D-Phenylalanine is an amino acid found plants, bacteria and the milk of mammals. It is an amino acid known to promote the production of endorphins. So, D-Phenylalanine is able to help alleviate pain. Furthermore, D-Phenylalanine can be given at the same time as a painkiller or NSAID. It has even been observed that D-Phenylalanine can strengthen the prescription medication’s beneficial effects. This means the dosage can be lowered.

There now many supplements which contain D-Phenylalanine. Nonetheless, the more trusted brand is Doctor’s Best D-Phenylalanine. It contains D-Phenylalanine and not L-Phenylalanine, which is an antidepressant. Although Doctor’s Best D-Phenylalanine is generally safe, it should not be administered to pregnant or lactating dogs to prevent any milk contamination or pregnancy problems. In addition, Doctor’s Best D-Phenylalanine (or any supplement containing D-Phenylalanine) should be avoided by dogs that have high blood pressure or those being treated with anti-depressants.

Before deciding to purchase Doctor’s Best D-Phenylalanine, first consult your vet. Doctor’s Best D-Phenylalanine is actually a product meant for human use; nevertheless, the vet can give instructions for the proper and safe administration of the product.

Harmful Effects of Dog Obesity

Obesity has become an alarming medical condition. A study made in 2008 revealed that there are about 500 million people worldwide who are obese. Another study made in the same year was done by the Association of Pet Obesity Prevention found that there about 33 million dogs in the US that are overweight or obese and this number equates to 44% of the total population. The study shows that the problem of obesity has actually spilled over to man’s best friend.

With this trend, vets are quite concerned. Some animal health experts believe that some dog owners don’t consider it as a serious health problem. In addition, there are owners that are too busy to care properly for their pets. Thus, these dogs are under-exercised and are overfed.

Nevertheless, these people need to realize that as a medical condition, obesity can reduce the life expectancy and affect the well being of an animal. Moreover, overweight or obese dogs are most likely to develop the following health problems:

1. Arthritis and other Orthopedic Problems. The muscles, bones, and connective tissue of overweight dogs experience more mechanical stress. The same can be said for an overweight dog’s joints. As a result, dog owners should be very careful with the physical activity they undertake with their pets. If it is too strenuous the risk of a broken bone or a torn ligament (especially the cruciate ligament) is quite high. The added mechanical stress also exacerbates the destruction of cartilage tissue. Hence, overweight or obese dogs often develop arthritis at an earlier age.

2. Type 2 Diabetes. A diet high in carbohydrates can lead to an increase in blood glucose. With this increase, the cells in pancreas responsible for producing insulin may become overwhelmed and shutdown.

3. Cardiovascular Disease. A diet high in fat can lead to the build-up of plaque in the blood vessels. In addition fat can also cover the heart, making it less effective in pumping blood.

4. Fatty Liver. The liver stores fat. When there is too much fat, the organ can get inflamed. This will make the liver less effective in its function.

5. Cancer. Several studies have revealed that certain types of cancer is more prevalent among overweight or obese dogs, though veterinary science has yet to fully understand the connection.

6. Other Complications. Overweight or obese dogs have weaker immune systems and often develop gastro-intestinal problems. Pregnant dogs that are overweight are most likely candidates for a C-section.

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A Background on Grade 3 Dog Arthritis

In the advanced stages of the disease, dog arthritis can severely diminish a dog’s quality of life. Experiencing chronic and acute pain at the same time can render a dog almost completely immobile. Hence, dog owners need to take action to maintain their dog’s health. If you suspect that something is wrong with your dog, don’t hesitate to have your dog examined by a vet.

In my veterinary practice, I created a grading system that will assess the severity of a dog’s arthritis. I find this tool helpful as it helps my clients have a better picture of their dog’s condition and at the same time I use it as a guide in recommending the best possible treatment options. This article will focus on grade 3 dog arthritis.

Grade 3 Dog Arthritis Symptoms and Treatments

X-rays and arthroscopy will reveal the following changes:

· Large bone spurs or osteophytes
· Significant amounts of scar tissue developing around the affected joints
· Very pronounced fissures in the cartilage

Considering the substantial damage in the joints, the dog will be exhibiting severe and very frequent lameness. Joints will be quite inflamed and the dog will be experiencing chronic and acute pain. This will result in behavioral changes. The dog will tend to isolate itself and will become irritable and aggressive. The animal will also become lethargic, which leads to muscle atrophy in the legs.

To address the symptoms of grade 3 dog arthritis the following needs to be utilized:

· Grade 1 and 2 treatments.
· Neuropathic pain medicines (NMDA antagonists). These drugs are used as support therapy alongside prescription painkillers. They work by calming down over active neural pain pathways.
· Non-steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). If your pet is young and healthy and has undergone blood tests that show that the animal can efficiently metabolize the drug, then the use of NSAIDs should be considered. Nevertheless, be very stringent when using the drug.
· Dietary supplements. Helpful supplements for this stage of the disease must contain bioflavanoids and other potent antioxidants (e.g. vitamins A, C, and E; coenzyme Q10; and glutathione). These substances protect chondrocytes (the living cells of the cartilage matrix) from harmful chemical reactions caused by free radicals.

Dog Arthritis Supplements with Omega-3 – Welactin

Welactin is a supplement, which contains omega-3 from a combination of different fish oils. Omega-3 has been proven to be good for the dog’s skin and coat, and is essential for the normal development of the dog’s retina and visual cortex. In addition, omega-3 prevents certain types of cancers and can help combat against allergies, autoimmune conditions, yeast infections, heart disease and hypertension.

A noticeable trend now evident is that many vets are veering away from sole use of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to more natural or safer methods in treating dog arthritis. Studies on arthritic human patients have proven that omega-3 can actually reduce inflammation and protect cartilage from further damage. Hence, Welactin is now being administered to arthritic dogs.

Omega-3 has the following mechanism of action:

· The fish oil in Welactin contains eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) omega-3 fatty acids. These two are precursors for potent anti-inflammatory lipids called resolvins and protectins.
· Omega-3 is able to reduce the level of TNF-alpha, a pro-inflammatory mediator responsible for the release of MMP (matrix metalloproteinases) enzymes. These enzymes are released by connective tissue cells in response to the presence of inflammation and are capable of breaking down collagen, an important component of cartilage, tendons, ligaments and bones.

Welactin is manufactured by Nutramax Laboratories.

Giving Your Dog Welactin

Welactin is an animal health product that does not require a prescription from the vet. It is available in pet health stores or vet clinics and is sold as soft gel capsule or in a liquid form.

Soft Gel Capsule Standard Dose

The standard dosage is one capsule per twenty pounds of your dog’s weight. This should be given daily.

Liquid Standard Dose

When administering the liquid form, make sure to use the graduated spoon provided. For dogs weighing twenty pounds, half a spoonful every other day will suffice. Dogs weighing twenty to forty pounds should be given half a spoon daily. Forty-one to eighty pound dogs should be given one spoonful daily while eighty-one to one hundred and twenty pound dogs should be given one and a half spoonfuls daily. Dogs weighing over one hundred and twenty pounds should be given two spoonfuls daily.

Proper Storage

Place the product in a cool, dry place. Make sure that the product is properly sealed every after use.

Welactin Safety Issues

Welactin is generally safe; however, it has been observed that some dogs may develop diarrhea in first few days of treatment. Some dogs also are allergic to fish oil.

Welactin is not safe when used together with blood thinning or blood-glucose lowering drugs.

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A Dog Owner’s Introduction to Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is a tick-borne disease affecting animals and people living in North America and in Europe. The disease is caused by the Borrelia bacteria. Lyme disease gets its name from Lyme, Connecticut, USA. In 1975, the town experienced an outbreak of the disease. The tick species responsible for transmitting the disease is the deer tick. The most common antibiotic used to treat Lyme disease is doxycycline.

Protecting Your Dog from Lyme Disease

If you live in the in the upper Midwestern states, the Atlantic seaboard or the Pacific coastal states and you observe that your dog is not eating well and is limping, then your dog may be infected with Lyme disease. Other signs that your dog may be sick with Lyme disease include fatigue, fever, enlargement of lymph nodes, and weight shifting lameness (where the dog is lame on one leg one day and then another leg another day).

If you suspect that your dog has Lyme disease, immediately have your dog examined by a vet. A blood test will reveal if your dog has Lyme disease or not, and if your dog is infected, the proper antibiotic will be prescribed. In a matter of two days, your dog’s condition will significantly improve.

Treating the disease in its early stages will prevent the development of complications. Lyme disease is known to cause damage to nervous system and the heart. Also, it can result in kidney failure. Finally, the infection can lead to the early development of dog arthritis, or if the dog already has arthritis, it will exacerbate the dog’s condition.

Lyme disease can be prevented. There are vaccines available to prevent infection and they have been proven to be approximately 80% effective. Also, applying one of the proven veterinary flea and tick preventatives such as Frontline or Advantix, will protect your dog from deer ticks. Finally, avoiding tick-infested environments during the most common periods of tick activity, spring and fall, will also help.

Lyme Disease and Dog Arthritis (PDF)

Learning More about Dog Arthritis and Supplements 3 – Glyco-Flex

Glyco-Flex is a dietary supplement believed to be beneficial for dogs suffering from arthritis. The active ingredients of Glyco-Flex are glucosamine, MSM or methyl-sulfonyl-methane, and Perna Canaliculus (green lipped mussels). Glyco-Flex is manufactured by Vetri-Science Laboratories.  
Using Glyco-Flex Safely 
Glyco-Flex is a non-prescription health product and, just like most joint health supplements, is generally considered by vets as a safe product to use in dogs.  
       1. Side Effects. There are no known side effects.
       2. Drug Interactions. There are no known drug interactions.
       3. Your Dog’s Current Condition. If your dog is diabetic, it is recommended that blood sugar levels should be constantly monitored since the supplement may contribute to a sudden spike in glucose. 
Ingredients and Dosing: 
Glyco-Flex has the following mechanism of action:
  • Glucosamine helps maintain the structural integrity of cartilage. Glucosamine helps cartilage to collect and retain water molecules in the cartilage matrix, giving the tissue a characteristic spongy texture. This texture makes cartilage more efficient in shock absorption.
  • Dimethylglycine or DMG is a potent anti-oxidant that protects cells from free radicals. DMG can be naturally found in beans and the liver and was first referred to as vitamin B16.
  • MSM or methyl-sulfonyl-methane is a natural sulfur compound found abundantly in fruits, nuts, vegetables, seafood, meat, and milk. MSM makes the cell wall more permeable making the absorption of nutrients and the expulsion of toxins more efficient.
Glyco-Flex is a non-prescription animal health product. It is available as chewable chicken-flavored tablets or as bite-sized chews. The tablets can be given to your dog without food while the bite-sized chews should be given with food.  
Initial Dose (the first four to six weeks). Dogs up to thirty pounds in weight are normally given half a tablet daily. Thirty-one to sixty-pound dogs are given one tablet daily. Sixty-one to one hundred-pound dogs are given two tablets daily. Dogs over one hundred pounds are given two and a half tablets daily.  
Maintenance Dose. Dogs up to thirty pounds in weight are normally given half a tablet every other day. Thirty-one to sixty-pound dogs are given half a tablet daily. Sixty-one to one hundred-pound dogs are given one tablet daily. Dogs over one hundred pounds are given one and a half tablets daily. 

Glyco-Flex should be stored in a cool dry place that is not accessible by animals or children.

Dog Arthritis Treatment Options Using Prescription Pain Killers Part 3 - Amantadine 

Amantadine is the generic name of Symmetrel and is a prescription drug that comes in the form 100 mg capsules or 10 mg/ml oral liquid. In veterinary medicine, it is used in as a support therapy to NSAIDs in the management of chronic pain relating to dog arthritis, surgery, or cancer.
Talking to Your Vet about Amantadine 
The use of Amantadine in the treatment of dog arthritis pain is a fairly new practice. In fact, it was only after a 2008 study that revealed the efficacy of Amantadine as a support therapy to NSAIDs that more vets began considering the drug as a treatment option for dog arthritis. Nevertheless, you should ask your vet the following questions if Amantadine is being considered:
  • What are the side effects of Amantadine? There are no known side effects yet established in dogs. However the drug has been known to cause diarrhea, hallucinations, and dizziness in human patients.
  • Is Amantadine safe to use with other drugs? Amantadine should never be used together with trimethoprim-sulfa, quinidine, thiazide diuretics, and anticholinergic drugs. Also, inform your vet of any medications (not mentioned in the list), supplements, or vitamins that you are giving to your dog. The information will prove useful if your dog does not respond well to Amantadine.
  • What if my dog has a pre-existing condition? More studies are needed in this area. However, as a precautionary measure, vets will avoid recommending the drug to dogs that have seizure disorders or have conditions of the liver, heart, or kidneys.
Use of Amantadine 
In the 2008 study, Amantadine was used in conjunction with an NSAID. The test dogs were first treated with Meloxicam for five weeks. In the third week, Amantadine was introduced at a dosage of three to five milligrams per kilogram of the dog’s weight. The drug was given only once every twenty-four hours for the next three weeks. When the study ended, it was revealed that the combination of Amantadine and an NSAID worked better than using an NSAID alone.  
Usually when your vet is recommending Amantadine, this will be alongside an NSAID that your vet has chosen to use in your dog. The administration and the dosage will normally follow what was in the 2008 study. Thus, the dose will be around 3-5 milligrams per kilogram of the dog’s weight. However, the use of Amantadine should never exceed fourteen days and the drug can only be used again if the pain returns.  

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