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Choosing the Right Joint Supplement

I have been using vita flex, flex free maximum strength joint support formula for over 15 years on my dogs, which has worked wonderfully.  I cannot seem to find it anymore, do you have any other suggestions? JP, Wyoming

Dear JP,

We carry Vita-Flex Flex Free® Maximum Strength Formula on our equine side—is that what you mean?  It’s their “super-concentrated economical alternative to Flex Free Original Formula requiring only half as much.”  That is, a 1000 pound horse only requires ½ a scoop (0.08 ounces or about 4 grams) once daily for joint maintenance.

In my opinion, that’s waaaay too concentrated for a dog and, even though the active ingredient in the product (Chondroitin) appears to be safe, I recommend you explore some of the newer products out there formulated specifically for joint health in dogs. In addition to Chondroitin, you’ll see Glucosamine, Hyaluronic Acid (HA), omega 3 fatty acids, MSM, and herbs such as Boswellia and Bromelain. Various combinations of these ingredients have been blended into tasty chew tabs that make proper dosing a cinch. Now you just have to experiment and see which combination of ingredients helps your dogs the most!

To help you do this, we have a cool feature on our website called Comparison Charts. You can compare the form of each product (powder, capsule, gel, tablet), the serving size for a 50lb dog, and the mg amounts of each active ingredient. 

However, that still leaves a lot of products to look through, so I’ll go ahead and tell you that our most popular products are the Cosequin line by Nutramax and the Glyco-Flex line by Vetri-Science. I hope you find something you and your dogs love! 

Lydia F. Gray, DVM, MA SmartPak Staff Veterinarian and Medical Director Dr. Lydia Gray has earned a Bachelor of Science in agriculture, a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), and a Master of Arts focusing on interpersonal and organizational communication. After “retiring” from private practice, she put her experience and education to work as the American Association of Equine Practitioner’s first-ever Director of Owner Education. Dr. Gray continues to provide health and nutrition information to horse owners through her position at SmartPak, through publication in more than a dozen general and trade publications, and through presentations around the country. She is the very proud owner of a Trakehner named Newman that she actively competes with in dressage and combined driving. In addition to memberships in the USDF and USEF, Dr. Gray is also a member of the Illinois Dressage and Combined Training Association (IDCTA). She is a USDF “L” Program Graduate and is currently working on her Bronze Medal. Find Dr. Gray on Google+

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Canine Ask the Vet, Lameness

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2 comments on “Choosing the Right Joint Supplement
  1. Nephi says:

    Gee wlilierks, that’s such a great post!

  2. Rose Lyman says:

    I have a 10 year old Beagle, her name is Peg. A number of years back she receive a kick to the hip by a mini horse. Vet put her on Tramadol 50 mg. She came out of that and was fine.

    2 weeks ago she was out with us and moved just right. She yipped and has been lame ever since. I have felt everywhere on her hip and leg with no results of pain.
    I was hopping you could recommend a joint, inflammatory medication that I could give her.

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