Many people who have dogs needing glucosamine supplements also take glucosamine supplements themselves. It probably crosses these people’s minds to give their dog supplements that are intended for their own use. There are a few reasons why this is not the best decision.
There is no real difference between the active ingredients in supplements intended for dogs and those intended for humans. The glucosamine generally comes from the same sources, as does the chondroitin that is usually in the same supplement. Glucosamine is often taken from animal sources such as shellfish, cows or pigs. Some vegetarian supplements are made from corn or wheat. Glucosamine sulfate is the supplement that is rated most effective by clinical trials.
Despite the fact that the glucosamine in human and canine supplements is the same, it is better to give dogs supplements intended only for dogs. This is because supplements made for humans often have ingredients that could be unhealthy for your dog, like artificial sweeteners and other flavorings. These ingredients do not generally cause side effects in humans. However, they can cause digestive problems and other issues when they are given to dogs, especially if you give them to your dog over a long period of time.
Glucosamine for dogs does not have the artificial flavorings and sweeteners that make the supplements more appealing to the human palate. High-quality supplements usually also do not contain common dog allergens like corn and other grains, and they are flavored naturally with chicken or other meat. This makes them much healthier for your dog. Supplements can also double as treats, since they are flavored to make them more palatable to dogs.
When your dog is happy to take the supplements you give him, it’s easier to make sure he gets the recommended dosage of glucosamine. Dogs may not like the taste of human supplements, which often come in liquid or powder forms that can make it difficult for your dog to eat or drink them. The sweeteners and artificial flavorings may make the supplement taste bitter or odd to your dog, who may not want to take it. Dog supplements are much easier to convince your dog to take, since you can offer them as treats.
Even dog glucosamine supplements that do not come in the form of chews, treats or biscuits can be much easier to give than human formulas. Powders and liquids are still usually flavored to make them as tasty as possible. These formulations may taste meaty, or even like gravy. It is easy to sprinkle or pour these over your dog’s food, making meal time even more appetizing.
Even if it is not difficult to get your dog to take supplements made for humans, it is better for her health to take supplements intended specifically for dogs. Supplements formulated for dogs are made with the dietary needs of most dogs in mind. Ingredients that could cause problems or side effects in dogs are not included in dog supplements, making them a better option for your dog’s glucosamine needs.