As a pet parent, I can say that there is nothing more relaxing than a walk with your dog. Playtime can make for some of the most beautiful memories of our lives.
Imagine how incomplete your life would be without that kind of quality time.
Unfortunately, this kind of life is a reality for parents of dogs with arthritis, hip dysplasia, or other joint and mobility issues.
It doesn’t have to be that way!
Despite conditions like arthritis and hip dysplasia, you and your dog can still enjoy a wonderful, playful life. You need to manage the condition better.
And as I always say, food is a big factor when it comes to your dog’s health.
Today, I am going to share what I think are the 14 best dog foods for arthritis, hip dysplasia, and joint mobility issues.
Best Dog Foods For Arthritis, Hip Dysplasia, Joint Health
|Top Products||What We Like About This Food…|
|1. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Healthy Mobility Small Bites Chicken Meal, Brown Rice & Barley Recipe||Contains glucosamine and chondroitin for improved mobility, powerful blend of antioxidants, great for skin and coat|
|2. Dogswell Happy Hips Lamb & Sweet Potato Stew Recipe Grain-Free Canned Dog Food||Contains ingredients to support joint health, free of grains and common allergens, ideal blend for arthritis, hip dysplasia, and joint mobility issues|
|3. Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets JM Joint Mobility Dry Dog Food||Specialized formula for improved mobility in canines, suitable for adult and senior dogs, veterinary diet with all-natural sources of glucosamine|
|4. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet W+M Weight Management & Mobility Support||Special veterinary diet, perfect weight management recipe to support mobility, grain-free|
|5. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Mobility Support Large Breed Dry Dog Food||Specialized veterinary formula, includes nutrients to prevent degenerative diseases, supports mobility by keeping weight in control|
1. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Healthy Mobility Small Bites Chicken Meal, Brown Rice & Barley Recipe
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken Meal, 2. Brewers Rice, 3. Whole Grain Sorghum, 4. Brown Rice, 5. Whole Grain Wheat
Hill’s Prescription is one of my most trusted brands for dogs with health concerns. This particular healthy mobility recipe contains plenty of fish oil and other sources of glucosamine and chondroitin. It helps to keep your pup’s bones and joints strong and healthy.
It has a powerful blend of antioxidants, which helps to stem inflammation. Moreover: All these ingredients provide for healthy skin and a shiny coat.
2. Dogswell Happy Hips Lamb & Sweet Potato Stew Recipe Grain-Free Canned Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Duck, 2. Chicken Broth, 3. Chicken Liver, 4. Chicken, Salmon, 5. Dried Egg Product
Dogswell’s Happy hip formula contains cage-free duck and is a delicious way to keep your dog moving without difficulty. This delicious recipe gives your dog good amounts of glucosamine and chondroitin for supporting joint health and contains chelated minerals, which plays a vital role in the effective absorption of nutrients. Since it is a canned formula, the extra moisture help keep your dog hydrated while they enjoy the stewy meal.
Dogswell’s Happy hip formula is free of grains and other common allergens that can increase inflammation or cause digestive issues for your dog. All of these reasons make it one of the best dog foods for arthritis, hip dysplasia, and joint mobility issues.
3. Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets JM Joint Mobility Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Brewers Rice, 2. Trout, Salmon Meal, 3. Corn Gluten Meal, 4. Poultry By-Product Meal, 5. Dried Egg Product
Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Joint Mobility Formula is a prescription food that can make a world of difference for dogs with mobility issues, especially because of arthritis. The formula is normally used for seniors and adults with arthritis but is sometimes prescribed to puppies with similar concerns.
The formula contains all-natural sources of glucosamine and omega-3 fatty acids. It offers balanced nutrition for all life stages. Since it is a veterinary diet, you need a vet’s authorization for purchase.
4. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet W+M Weight Management & Mobility Support
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Salmon, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Pea Protein, 4. Powdered Cellulose, 5. Peas
Made from safe and natural ingredients, Blue Buffalo’s Weight Management + Mobility Support dog food is great for dogs with a not-so-active lifestyle and weight issues. Since these are two are the most common reasons behind joint and mobility issues, you will see a considerable improvement in your dog’s condition.
The formula can help your dog lose some extra pounds, so it is easier for its bones and joints. It is 100% grain-free, so it is good for dogs with a sensitive tummy. However, it is a prescription-only food and requires veterinary authorization.
5. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Mobility Support Large Breed Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Brewers Rice, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Corn Gluten Meal, 4. Corn, Brown Rice, 5. Natural Flavors
Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Mobility Support JS Large Breed dog food is another prescription option, but this one is formulated for large and giant breeds like Great Danes and St. Bernards. The recipe is formulated with ingredients such as the New Zealand green mussels and can help your dog with joint pain and inflammation that hinders mobility.
For breeds prone to joint issues, this formula can effectively prevent the risk of developing degenerative diseases such as osteoarthritis. And not to mention, it is a great option to keep the extra pounds off your pooch. Royal Canin veterinary diet also requires veterinary authorization.
6. VICTOR Performance Formula Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Beef Meal, 2. Grain Sorghum, 3. Whole Grain Millet, 4. Chicken Fat, 5. Blood Meal
More meat protein makes VICTOR Purpose Performance a great option for dogs struggling to stay lean. That includes large breeds, but some smaller ones can also benefit from a protein-rich diet – especially when you see signs of joint problems and mobility issues. Aside from protein, the formula is also rich in glucosamine and chondroitin and is gluten-free.
7. Diamond Naturals Large Breed Adult Lamb Meal & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Lamb Meal, 2. Whole Grain Brown Rice, 3. Cracked Pearled Barley, 4. Oatmeal, 5. Grain Sorghum
Give your large or giant breed dog a natural way to keep joint and mobility issues at bay. Made with real lamb proteins and antioxidant-rich foods, Diamond Natural prevents common joint-related problems and degenerative diseases. For dogs who are already suffering, there are plenty of ingredients to reduce inflammation and improve mobility. Plus, there is a proprietary probiotic blend to keep the tummy happy.
8. Authority Healthy Weight & Joint Support Turkey & Chickpea Formula Adult Dry Dog
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Turkey, 2. Turkey Meal, 3. Brown Rice, 4. Ground Wheat, 5. Dried Chickpeas
This formula helps maintain a healthy weight and healthy joints in large breed dogs. It is ideal for the prevention of these issues in breeds most prone to them. Turkey meal in this formula is a rich source of glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, two of the most important ingredients for joints and mobility. The best part: it tastes delicious, and even the pickiest pooches would love it.
9. Wellness Complete Health Senior Deboned Chicken & Barley Recipe Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Chicken, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Oatmeal, 4. Ground Barley, 5. Ground Brown Rice
Wellness Complete Health is a top pick for senior dogs because it is great for overall health. It contains nutrient-rich ingredients, including chicken, apples, blueberries, spinach, and apples. Taurine, glucosamine and chondroitin are added to keep your senior healthy and active. So, if you have a senior in the house, this is one of the best dog foods for arthritis, hip dysplasia, and joint mobility issues.
10. Purina ONE SmartBlend Vibrant Maturity 7+ Adult Formula
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Rice Flour, 3. Corn Gluten Meal, 4. Chicken By-Product Meal, 5. Soybean Meal
Purina ONE’s SmartBlend formula is ideal for your large breed dogs about to enter their senior years. That is when the risk of developing joint or mobility problems starts to rise. Not only does it contain glucosamine from natural sources, but it also has enhanced botanical oils that support mobility and provide energy. It is a delicious combination of crunchy kibbles and meaty morsels.
11. Blue Buffalo Freedom Senior Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Chicken, 2. Potatoes, 3. Peas, 4. Pea Starch, 5. Chicken Meal
If you are looking for a grain-free option for your senior dog with arthritis, hip dysplasia, joint or mobility issues, Blue Buffalo Freedom Chicken recipe is your best bet. It is a great option to keep your old pal safe from allergic reactions while giving them enough glucosamine and other essential nutrients.
12. Purina Pro Plan Focus Puppy Large Breed Formula Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Rice, 3. Corn Gluten Meal, 4. Whole Grain Corn, 5. Poultry By-Product Meal
This one is rich in quality protein and glucosamine. It specifically targets the needs and problems of large breed puppies. If your pup is suffering from any of the joint or bone-related problems, this one can make things manageable. If it is a breed that is susceptible to these diseases, Purina Pro Plan is great for prevention.
13. Nutro Wholesome Essentials Puppy Lamb & Rice Recipe
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Lamb, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Brewers Rice, 4. Rice Bran, 5. Whole Brown Rice
This one is on almost all my top puppy food lists, and for a good reason. Nutro Wholesome Essentials is a well-rounded formula that promotes the overall health of your puppy. That includes bones and joints as well. No matter the dog breed, this one will keep them healthy, active, and happy while keeping painful joint problems at bay.
14. Hill’s Science Diet Puppy Large Breed Lamb Meal & Rice Recipe
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Lamb Meal, 2. Brown Rice, 3. Whole Grain Wheat, 4. Whole Grain Sorghum, 5. Brewers Rice
This Hill’s Science Diet formula for large breed puppies is great for pups who are likely to gain more pounds than they should. Increased weight is one of the main causes behind arthritis and joint issues in young pups. With this nutrition-rich recipe, you can keep a check on weight while ensuring healthy joint-friendly ingredients such as calcium, vitamin C, and glucosamine.
There is a lot you need to know when buying food for your dog with arthritis, hip dysplasia, or any other joint issue. Arthritis can be of many types, and mobility issues can have many causes.
Always seek a vet for a proper diagnosis. Dietary changes will only work best when paired with the right medicines, supplements, and management plans. Some of the supplements that can enhance joint and bone health include:
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids
- Glucosamine and Chondroitin
- Methyl-sulfonyl-methane (MSM)
- Vitamin C
Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and creatine are commonly found in prescription and non-prescription dog food for joints and mobility.
Let’s take a look at other ingredients you may find.
Ingredients to Look for
You need to go for ingredients that can heal inflammation and increase the amount of glucosamine and chondroitin. Omega-3 fatty acids are another essential that need to be in good amount. These are the ingredients to look for:
- Wild-caught Fish: Fish is a great source of fatty acids that enhances mobility. It also has anti-inflammatory properties. However, always look for the wild-caught variety instead of farm fish. Salmon, herring, and sardines are your best bet.
- Superfoods: Superfoods such as blueberries and cranberries are powerful antioxidants. They can reduce inflammation and make your pal’s life much manageable with arthritis or joint pain.
- Bone-in Meat: Look for meat with cartilage linings such as oxtails or poultry neck. This kind of bone-in meat can be very beneficial for joint repair and healing.
- Green-lipped Mussels: Green-lipped mussels are also superfoods and they contain lots of glucosamine, chondroitin and hyaluronic acid, and Omega-3s.
Weight Issues and Joint Problems
Dogs that are overweight or heavier breeds are more likely to develop joint problems and arthritis. It is important to control your dog’s weight through a low-fat diet. Weight management dog food is a good preventive measure. Keep your dog lean and give them regular exercise. Even for dogs who have already developed the disease, light exercise regularly can help them manage pain and mobility.
Now that you know of how you can pick the best dog foods for arthritis, hip dysplasia, and joint mobility issues, let’s continue with more of my top picks.
Like any other disease, joint and mobility issues can also leave pet parents with a lot of questions. I’ve tried to answer some of the most commonly asked ones here. Do check them out before moving on to the buying guide I have prepared.
How do I know my dog has arthritis or joint problems?
Look for signs of joint problems such as limping. Your dog will seem uncomfortable when moving or changing positions. A change in activity level can also signal arthritic changes, as can biting at the affected areas.
Can arthritis shorten my dog’s life?
Arthritis can have a cascading effect on your dog’s quality of life. They can become less active, and consequently, gain weight. And so, if you don’t manage their condition, arthritis can shorten your dog’s life span. However, if managed and treated properly, you can counter the effects of arthritis. Many dogs develop arthritis early in their lives, but proper treatment and diet allow them to live happy and healthy lives.
Can arthritis be painful for dogs?
Animals feel pain just like we do. Having problems with joints or bones is as painful for them as it is for us. Your veterinarian can come up with a proper treatment plan to make their lives as pain-free as possible.
Can I walk my dog with arthritis, hip dysplasia, or joint problem?
Yes, most vets encourage short walks and low impact exercises to prevent cramps and sprains in dogs with arthritis, joint problems, and hip dysplasia. However, you need to make sure you aren’t exhausting them with too much activity.
Which dog breed is more susceptible to arthritis and joint issues?
All breeds are susceptible to these issues. Large breeds like Labradors, Great Danes, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, and Saint Bernards are among the usual suspects. However, smaller breeds like Daschunds and Basset Hounds commonly face joint issues as well.