Relief for dogs with arthritis?

The findings of the Montreal study are beneficial for dogs, but they can also potentially help humans.

As our dogs live longer, signs of aging often show up. One of the most common forms of old age is arthritis. The good news is that scientists at the University of Montreal’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine discovered a plant based dietary supplement with no side effects that can be used on dogs.

Professor Éric Troncy, senior author of the study that first appeared in Research in Veterinary Science, explains, “While acupuncture and electrical stimulation are two approaches that have been shown to have positive effects on dogs, until now a few studies have investigated a plant-based approach to therapy.”

All of the 32 dogs in the study were diagnosed with arthritis. Half of the dogs were given a formula made from curcumin, devil’s claw, black current, Indian frankincense (Salai), willow bark, pineapple bromelaine, and chamomilefor four weeks. For the following four weeks they received the same formula plus omega 3, chondroitin sulfate, and glutamine.

The other dogs in the study received a placebo.

Maxim Moreau, the first author of the study, found that the dogs given the dietary supplements had an increase in physical activity, while the dogs who received the placebo were less active. He also noted that none of the dogs in the study saw their health decline.

The dogs in the study wore collars that monitored their physical activity. The scientists relied on those findings more so than the testimony from the dogs’ parents. “We suspect that the owner may have forgotten what the animal’s behavior was like before it developed arthritis,” the lead researcher told Science Daily.

While the findings in this study help dogs, it also is a model that can be tested on humans. “The model of evaluation that we have used is the best for predicting the efficacy of anti-arthritis treatments,” said Troncy. “We can therefore consider that clinical trials on humans would have a good chance of having positive outcomes.”

Sources: Science Daily, Science Direct, Universite de Montreal, University of Montreal’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Research in Veterinary Science