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Through the Lens of Kimberly Gauthier, Sydney laying with Daddy

Today, Sydney went to see our veterinarian for arthritis pain.  Her limping was getting worse and I didn’t know what to do.  Last weekend, we went for a walk at the Arlington airport and Sydney was barely walking on her right, front leg.

Why wait a week for a veterinarian appointment?

I started Sydney (and her brothers) on a new joint care supplement and I wanted to give it a chance to make a difference.  And we did see some improvement over the week.  Sydney required less pain medication (we were using Dog Gone Pain).  We did see some improvement, but I still wanted to speak with our veterinarian.

Why did Sydney’s arthritis pain get worse?

Now this is only a theory, but I trust our veterinarian’s judgement and expertise (plus he’s so great with Sydney) and I thought he had a point.  Sydney started displaying increased arthritis pain when we switched her from the introductory dosage to the maintenance dosage.

Supplement Serving Directions

Sydney was taking 3 tablets a day of one brand; I kept her on them for 2 weeks, not the suggested 1 week.  When I reduced her dosage to 1-1/2 tablets a day, her arthritis pain slowly returned.  It got worse, because I kept her at 1-1/2 tablets a day.  It got worse as I switched the dogs from supplement to supplement trying to find one that works.

Our veterinarian’s suggested daily use…

Our veterinarian suggested 3,000 milligrams per day.  He suggested that we NOT give our dogs a liquid supplement, because it costs too much.   And he suggested that we buy a bottle (OMG these cost so much less) at Costco.  I picked up the following and promptly became confused…

Okay…I thought we were supposed to give our dogs Glucosamine, Chondroitin and MSM.  But I couldn’t find a tablet that contained all three at Costco.  I’m going to double check with our veterinarian, but so far this is what I learned…

  • Glucosamine + chondroitin reduces the enzymes that can destroy cartilage, reduces inflammation and helps to rebuild cartilage.  Together glucosamine and chondroitin maximizes these benefits.
  • MSM alleviates inflammation and pain; providing dogs with more comfort and easier movement.

Our plan to alleviate arthritis pain in dogs

We’re going to speak with our veterinarian on Monday, but today, we started the dogs on the Kirkland Glucosamine / Chondroitin supplement.  Our veterinarian prescribed Tramadol to alleviate Sydney’s pain.  Tramadol doesn’t have the nasty side effects that play havoc on our dogs’ liver and kidneys, but there may be some side effects during the first few days…

  • Upset tummy (give with food)
  • Loss of appetite – Our Syd ate dinner like her normal self.
  • Sleepiness – Sydney did take a long nap after the Tramadol kicked in.
  • Slower heart rate
  • Anxiety / increased panting / a stoned look – We didn’t experience this with Sydney the first night.

In the mean time, I can give our Kinn Kudose a run while I turn the dogs’ supplements into yummy treats.  I’m also going to give the suggestions I’ve received for giving our dogs medication: hot dogs, marshmallows, and Greenies Pill Pockets.

Long story short…

We alleviate arthritis pain in dogs by listening to the veterinarian.  If you’re lucky enough to have a great veterinarian like the team at Smokey Point Veterinary Hospital, then you’ll be glad that you listened.

A Sydney Update (3/20/2013)

Sydney is doing much better with the pain meds and the increase to 3,000 mg of glucosamine, chondroitin, and msm.  We’ve since switched back to Wag Lifetime Joint Care for all of our dogs and they get Dog Gone Pain when they over do it.  Everyone is doing great.  It’s wonderful to have racing dogs again.

Sydney running and playing after a month on Wag Lifetime Joint Care

Sydney running and playing after a month on Wag Lifetime Joint Care


If your dogs have arthritis pain; what are you doing to help them alleviate that pain?  Thanks!

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