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Lots of Glucosamine and MSM at the pet store | Ask A Vet!

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Lots of Glucosamine and MSM at the pet store
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Madison, WI
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8 July 2009 - 8:08 pm
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There were some new products in my pet store on my last visit that I'd love a vet's opinion on.  The brand name is NuHemp and I picked up a brochure and their website is http://www.nuhemp.com

I was particularly curious about their “MSM Soothing Topical Gel.”  I've seen MSM and Glucosamine discussed on the forums as supplements, but I've never heard of it being used topically.  According to this brochure, the MSM topical gel provides “fast-acting, soothing relief” to joints if you massage the gel in. The gel is also supposed to be good for dry or damaged skin.

Ingredients: Water, MSM, PEG 8, Glycerin, CARBOPOL 940, Triethaloamine, Polysorbate 20, Cold Pressed Hemp Seed Oil, Tetrasodium EDTA, Sodium Lactate, Ivy Extract, Paraguay Green Tea Extract, Germall Plus.

Other products that sounded intriguing were their “Pawsitive Therapy” for paw pads (looks like a deodorant stick) and an “Omega Sauce Plus” with a “Joint, Hip & Digestive Formula” that includes MSM and Glucosamine HCL – which kind of brings me to another question, if I can drag this post on a little longer?  I don't know about in other people's areas, but for a while now in our pet stores there are lots and lots of treats that advertise they're good for joint health, usually with names like “Hip Action” or “Happy Hips,” with added Glucosamine and Chondroitin.  I know it may depend on the specific brand, but can these treats be worthwhile?  Is it better to go with just a straight-up supplement?

Yoda has had Glucosamine in his dog food for almost 3 years now.  I don't know if that's unusual.  He's on Eagle Pack's sensitive stomach variety.  Is 41 mg/cup a significant amount?  Oh shoot, sorry, I'll stop asking questions now.

Yoda&Mom united: 9/5/06 …….… Yoda&Leg separated: 6/5/09……… Yoda&Leg reunited: 10/14/09 ……… ……………….………….………….……. Yoda&Mom NEVER separated! …………………….….……....….…… Though Spirit Yoda currently free-lances as a rabbit hunting instructor for tripawds nationwide

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9 July 2009 - 7:58 am
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I don't think that these products woud hurt but it is hard to know if they would help.  The Omega Sauce is plant-based and the omega-3 percentage is low.  A large-breed dog with cancer needs 1000-5000 mg of omega 3 fatty acids daily, and the best way to get this amount is through fish oil. You must read labels carefully because often the total mg of fish oil is listed on the front label but you have to look at omega 3 levels separately.  This Omega Sauce only lists a percentage (9%) of omega 3, not mg so it is hard to know what you are getting.  Also, dogs have to go through an extra step to metabolize flax seed or other plant oils so most holistic vets recommend the fish oil. 

It is okay to feed dogs food with glucosamine but no food contains enough to treat arthritis.  A Lab-sized dog needs 1000 mg of glucosamine, 800 mg of chondroiten sulfate, and 500 mg of MSM daily for 4-6 weeks, then half of those amounts for maintenence daily.  You can use human supplements but many of them do not contain the advertised amounts because the FDA does not regulate supplements.  Consumer Reports did a study a few years ago on these supplements and some only contained 20% of what they claimed.  I use Dasuquin for Tazzie because it is pure and the company has done lots of research on dogs.  It is pricier but I think it is worth it.

MSM can be used topically but a much better and stronger product would contain DMSO to better penetrate the skin.

Once again you won't hurt your dog with any of these things but you may just be throwing your money away!

Pam

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9 July 2009 - 2:40 pm
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FYI: We gave Jerry SynFlex glucosamine supplement. It is derived from "shark cartilage" which is just an industry term, no sharks are actually harvested. This discussion started by ldillon81 mentions certain anti-angiogenic benefits of shark cartilage.

Madison, WI
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10 July 2009 - 8:59 am
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Thanks for the assessment, Pam!  Now is definitely the time to spend wisely. Big Grin

Yoda&Mom united: 9/5/06 …….… Yoda&Leg separated: 6/5/09……… Yoda&Leg reunited: 10/14/09 ……… ……………….………….………….……. Yoda&Mom NEVER separated! …………………….….……....….…… Though Spirit Yoda currently free-lances as a rabbit hunting instructor for tripawds nationwide

Alvin, TX
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10 July 2009 - 9:07 am
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The sup's recommended by our vet is Derm Caps for it's fish oil and Dasuquin for joints.  I have looked at the stuff at Petsmart and they all have much less active ingredients than the Derm Caps and Dasuquin.  At first I got them from the vet and now I order online.  They are much more expensive than the Petsmart stuff, but well worth it.

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