Run Wild and Free: The Best Dog Food for Arthritis

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Have you noticed your dog acting strangely like a 100-year old pet? Do they show signs of stiffness and inability to move? These are just some signs that your furry friend has arthritis.

Just like humans, dogs cannot escape the effect of age and time that can cause damage to their bodies. As your dog grows older, there is a tendency of health deterioration and some degree of bone degeneration.

Sadly, the problems caused by arthritis is not merely exclusive to mature dogs as it can also occur in young and adult pooches. Good thing! A change in the dog’s diet can help in decreasing the symptoms of arthritic canines.

You might be asking what is the best dog food for arthritis and how will you know if it is the best for your pet. Keep on reading to find out!


Top 6 Dog Food for Arthritis of 2020

The best dog foods for the joints and the bones should come with premium ingredients to ensure optimum results. Here are some of our top choices among the various options of the best dog food for arthritis.

Editor's Picks

Product​​​​ Name


Best Choices

Wellness Core Natural Grain-Free Dry 

Dog Food for Mobility Enhancement

Hill's Science Diet Healthy Mobility Dry

Best Wet Dog Food for Arthritis

Purina Pro Plan Canned Wet Dog Food

Best Dog Food for Big and Senior Dogs

Royal Canin Large Aging Dry Dog Food

Best Bones and Joints Diet for Small Dog Breeds

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula

Best Arthritic Food for Growing Dogs

Wag Dry Dog Food

Wellness Core Natural Grain-Free Dry Dog Food - The Optimum Dog Food for Arthritis

Wellness Core Dog Food is a unique formula that uses a combination of natural ingredients to support your dog’s well-being while combating joint diseases.

To ensure lean muscles, its primary protein source comes from high-quality animals such as deboned turkey, turkey meal, and chicken. The digestible and grain-free carbohydrates contained in this dog food offer the essential nutrients and energy needed by your dogs to stay alert and healthy.

Also, Wellness Core Dog Food contains glucosamine and chondroitin components for optimal joint health and support. It comes with a rich amount of omega fatty acids to give your dogs healthy skin and luscious coats.

On top of that, this dog food is formulated using only the freshest fruits and vegetables for extra antioxidant and fiber sources. It doesn’t contain any additives, artificial colors, grains, and by-products that can be harmful to your dogs.

Overall, Wellness Core Dog Food features an optimum and well-balanced amount of calories and fat for proper maintenance of ideal body weight. This formulation helps alleviate the symptoms of arthritis and prevent further occurrence of any health issues.

  • A high-quality source of protein
  • Highly digestible and grain-free carbohydrates
  • Comes with glucosamine and chondroitin
  • Rich in omega fatty acids
  • No artificial additives
  • May contain high amounts of fiber
  • Contains chicken which is not suitable for sensitive dogs

Hill's Science Diet Healthy Mobility Dry Dog Food - Dog Food for Mobility Enhancement

Hill’s Mobility Dog Food recipe offers a complete and balanced nutritional level to ensure the well-being of your pets, especially the maintenance of adult dogs.

It uses only high-quality ingredients such as real lamb, chicken, and salmon as their primary protein source. These components are carefully examined and analyzed to ensure the safety of your dogs.

To support and improve joint health, Hill’s Mobility Dog Food comes with natural sources of chondroitin and glucosamine. It also features high amounts of EPA from fish oil to promote stronger bones and joint flexibility.

The natural ingredients used in this dog food provide the antioxidant benefits required by your dogs to promote a strong immune system. This also comes with vitamins, minerals, and amino acids to promote healthy bones, skin, and coat even in large dog breeds.

Additionally, the recipe lacks any artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, and chicken by-products meal in its formulation, making it highly suitable even for sensitive dogs.

Overall, Hill’s Mobility Dog Food offers a unique, consistent, and cutting-edge formulation that effectively improves mobility while providing great-tasting treats that your dog will love.

  • Natural source of protein
  • A rich amount of EPA, chondroitin, and glucosamine
  • Contains antioxidants
  • Lacks artificial additives
  • A bit expensive

Purina Pro Plan Canned Wet Dog Food - The Best Wet Dog Food for Arthritis

Purina Savor Wet Dog Food is a flavorful treat that delivers complete and balanced nutrition that adult dogs will surely enjoy.

It comes with real beef, lamb, turkey, chicken, or salmon source as its primary protein ingredient for more nutritious and tasteful kibble pieces. Each formula also comes with highly digestible ingredients to ensure optimal nutrient absorption in every bite.

Aside from that, Purina Savor Wet Dog Food is rich in antioxidants for a more improved immune system. It contains natural prebiotic fiber and live probiotics to guarantee optimum digestive health.

This savory tasting treat is made with high-quality ingredients, thus providing 23 essential vitamins and minerals for your adult or maturing dogs. Also, it contains omega-6 fatty acids to help promote healthy skin and radiant coat.

Being wet food, this dog formulation is generally more flavorful as it is complemented with wild rice and other essential nutrients to back up your dog's health and wellness.

Overall, Purina Savor Wet Dog Food is a trusted dog food featuring savory taste and flavor that guarantees the welfare and health of your adult dogs. 

  • High-quality and real ingredients
  • Contains antioxidants and essential nutrients
  • Easily digestible
  • Savory taste and flavors
  • Contains poultry by-products

Royal Canin Large Aging Dry Dog Food - The Best Dog Food for Big and Senior Dogs

Royal Canin Large Aging Dog Food contains the precise amount of nutrients needed by your growing dog in every stage of their magnificent long life.

This dry dog food is tailored to support the vitality of big and senior dogs. It comes with an exclusive blend of antioxidants for better cellular health, reduced signs of aging, and a sustainable life.

Moreover, Royal Canin Large Aging Dog Food features essential nutrients to keep the bones healthy and joints strong throughout their active life. Their high-quality proteins and the rich supply of fibers promotes an easy and proper digestive health.

What makes this dog formulation more impressive is its large-size, palatable, and rehydratable kibble that is ideal for senior dog’s jaw shape and size. Simply mix them with water for an easy-to-chew meal that your dog will love. It incorporates a combination of wet and dry dog food for more concentrated nutrients, healthier hydration, and optimum nutrition.

Overall, Royal Canin Large Aging Dog Food delivers more targeted nutrition to support every dog’s magnificence, especially those belonging to senior and large breed of dogs. 

  • Keeps bones and joints healthy
  • Comes with antioxidants
  • Rich in proteins and fibers
  • Palatable and rehydratable kibble
  • Expensive than other options

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Small Breed Dog Food - The Best Bones and Joints Diet for Small Dog Breeds

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Dog Food is created to support the special needs of smaller dogs due to its increased nutritional content giving higher energy to your furry friends.

In fact, this dog food comes with high amounts of protein and carbohydrates from excellent sources. It uses real meat as its primary ingredient combined with chicken sources to ensure proper building and maintenance of healthy muscles.

Also, Blue Buffalo Life Protection Dog Food is specially formulated using wholesome whole grains, fruits, and vegetables for an increased level of protein and carbohydrates needed by small dog breeds.

With the exclusive Lifesource Bits technology offered by its manufacturer, your dogs are guaranteed to have a blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals for optimum immunes system and healthy oxidative balance.

Lastly, this dog formulation has omega-3 and fatty acid components from fish oil to help promote healthy skin and coat. It contains no poultry by-product meals, wheat, soy, corn, and artificial additives that are detrimental to your dog's health.

Overall, the Blue Buffalo Life Protection Dog Food offers a unique formulation that focuses on your dog’s vitality and wellness.

  • Uses real meat sources
  • Contains increased levels of proteins and carbohydrates
  • A precise blend of vitamins and minerals
  • Comes with Lifesource Bits technology
  • Not suitable for dogs with grain allergies
  • Not recommended for overweight dogs

Wag Dry Dog Food - The Best Arthritic Food for Growing Dogs

Wag Dry Dog Food is an Amazon-owned brand that is formulated to give puppies the optimum nutrition needed to grow strong and healthy. 

Its unique formulation contains about 36% of protein using real American chicken to keep your dog at their bounding best. Veterinarians highly approve this incredible source as it comes with a perfect number of vitamins and minerals to ensure the ideal growth of your puppies.

Additionally, Wag Dry Dog Food contains no added grain, glutens, artificial colors, and chemical preservatives, which are, in particular, the common allergens for your dogs. It lacks any pea product in its composition, which is mainly used as a filler more than as a carbohydrate source.

This dog food comes with an optimal blend of fat, antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and phytonutrients. They are blended under strict quality control to ensure meeting the high standards for optimal growth and development.

As a bonus, this dog food comes with trial-size bags to let your dogs try it without buying too much.

Overall, Wag Dry Dog Food is a competitive brand that gives your puppies satisfaction while ensuring to keep them strong and active as they grow older and bigger.

  • Real sources of protein
  • No artificial ingredients
  • Blended with essential nutrients
  • Comes in trial sizes
  • Not suitable for large breed puppies

Canine Arthritis FAQs

1. What Is Canine Arthritis?

good dog food for arthritis

Arthritis refers to the inflammation of the joints, which are often exhibited by pain, stiffness, discomfort, and inability to move.

Inside the dog’s joint is a fine layer of cartilage that shields the surface of the bone. The joint fluid helps the surfaces glide one over the other with very low friction.

With arthritis, the cartilage is damaged and will be less smooth, thus causing pain when the bone surfaces rub together. Consequently, a new bone starts to develop around the joint, which in turn, disables movement and causes muscle and bone stiffness.

2. Causes of Joint Diseases?

best senior dog food for arthritis
  • Dog Breed

Large dog breeds are more prone to arthritis. Based on genetics, these dogs tend to develop the joint disease more often than not. Since it is hereditary, the condition can appear anytime, and even your dogs are still young adults. 

  • Aging

As your dog's age, their cartilage tends to deteriorate. Thus making senior dogs more prone to arthritis. Also, active canines are greatly affected by the disease since they stay energetic and agile throughout their life, resulting in joint or hip dysplasia. 

  • Diet

Even though a proper diet can reduce the risk of arthritis, the lack of nutrients can also affect the overall health of dogs. It is best to choose formulas that feature a perfect blend of ingredients to ensure your dog’s optimum health.

  • Infections

The joint infections tend to damage the cartilage, which can eventually lead to arthritis. These infections usually occur after an injury or trauma.

  • Exercise

Physical activity is a crucial way of reducing arthritis. The need to stimulate muscle strength and maintain muscle mass becomes harder in restricting the dog’s movement and reducing the stress of the joints.

3. Symptoms of Dog Arthritis?

best dry dog food for arthritis
  • Limping or lameness
  • Hopping while running
  • Whining or whimpering
  • Excessively licking the joint area
  • Noticeable swelling
  • Moving slowly
  • Difficulty laying down or getting up
  • Unwillingness to walk or jump
  • Favoring one leg over the others
  • Holding one leg off the ground
  • Changes in behavior such as aggression

4. Finding the Right Food for Joint Issues

best natural dog food for arthritis

Make sure to choose the appropriate nutrition suited for your dog’s age. When purchasing a dog formula, pay attention to the variations to accommodate the needs of every puppy, adult, and senior dogs. Keep in mind that several ingredients play a significant role, which can either make or break the dog’s well being.

  • Glycosaminoglycan

Glycosaminoglycan compounds such as glucosamine and chondroitin help produce cartilage-forming cells. These create the necessary building blocks needed to synthesize new cartilage and repair any existing damage.

Products containing these components will not elevate the pain but, instead, repair the joint damage. As naturally occurring compounds, glycosaminoglycans are safe to use and show few side-effects. 

  • Vitamins and Minerals

Some of the crucial vitamins and minerals that should be included in foods for arthritic dogs include.

  • Vitamin C - synthesizes cartilage and collagen due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Creatine - improves muscle performance, thus preventing muscle atrophy.
  • MSM - strengthens the connective tissues.
  • Bromelain - minimizes the presence of inflammation.
  • Duralactin - contains anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Essential Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are the first line of defense when it comes to combating arthritis. These natural antioxidants aid with inflammation without worrying about any implications and side-effects.

  • Antioxidants

Antioxidants act as the defense system in fighting free radicals. They also help repair cells and prevent metabolic conditions and disorders. Its presence can alleviate swelling and pain while preventing further damage to the joints. 

  • Low-Grain Content

The presence of grains in dog formula is linked to allergies and inflammation, which can irritate dogs with arthritis. Frequently, grains act as a cheap filler that lacks any nutritional value.

  • Low-Fat Meats

Fatty meats can stress the dog’s joints and harm their optimum well-being. While some formula uses animal fat as an affordable source of protein, it is best to choose foods that contain premium protein from turkey or chicken to ensure proper joint care.

Final Thoughts

Even the most responsible dog owners can’t protect their dogs from the possibility of joint problems and passage of time. Once your dog starts to have signs of slowing down, giving them the utmost attention to know the underlying condition.

Switching diet with the best dog food for arthritis is probably one of the best solutions that you can take. Among the formula available, Wellness Core Natural Grain-Free Dry Dog Food is our top pick as it contains a high amount of proteins, carbohydrates, fatty acids, and glycosaminoglycan needed by your dogs to ensure stronger bones and joints.

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