Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies in Dogs

Written By hannah hollinger
Published: 06/20/2017Updated: 10/29/2021
Veterinary reviewed by Dr. Linda Simon, MVB MRCVS
Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies in Dogs - Conditions Treated, Procedure, Efficacy, Recovery, Cost, Considerations, Prevention
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What are Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies?

Arthritis causes bone and joint pain and discomfort and can be debilitating for dogs. Dogs who suffer from arthritis lose quality of life and can become depressed or anxious. Some dogs are susceptible to arthritis by breed and size, but others develop arthritis secondary to disease or injury. The older a dog, the more likely they will be affected. The thinning of fluids which lubricate and protect joints occurs as dogs age, causing bone to bone contact and painful friction. Arthritis also causes swelling in your dog’s joints. There are natural, homeopathic and herbal remedies available to help treat arthritis in dogs. However, if your vet has advised your dog requires conventional medicine (such as pain relief and anti-inflammatories), their advice should be heeded. For most arthritic dogs, western medicine is needed to keep them comfortable. Always discuss your dog's treatment plan with your vet who can help guide you.

Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies Procedure in Dogs

There are many herbal remedies to tackle inflammation and pain, however approaching the overall health and lifestyle of your dog can do more to improve their battle with arthritis. As well as this, prescription, conventional medicine such as pain relief is usually needed to ensure your dog has a good quality of life and is free from pain.

Inflammation and Pain Remedies


Comfrey has pain relief and anti-inflammatory properties. You can add ½ to 1 teaspoon to your dog’s food. If you can find the dried herb in natural food stores, comfrey can be added to a warm compress for localized pain relief.


Frankincense is an all-around perfect herbal remedy. With anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidant properties. Frankincense is used around the world for many ailments. Essential oils or a dried Frankincense herb can be added to your dog’s food.


Yucca is often used in arthritis medications for humans as well as animals. Yucca is easy to find in health food stores. Adding Yucca to your dog’s diet is easy to do with capsules or the dried herb.


Alfalfa is another widely-used herb for pain management and inflammation. Much alfalfa is genetically modified, so look for organic alfalfa in your local health food store or grow your own. Add the dried herb before flowering directly to your dog’s food or provide capsules inside a treat.


Turmeric is another commonly used herb. Turmeric is easy to add to your dog’s food and can help with pain as well as inflammation. Turmeric also has incredible antioxidant properties to help fight disease.

The above herbs can be mixed together for added benefits. You may also find tinctures available with these herbs in your local health food store.

Overall Health and Diet


Your dog’s overall health, including joint pain, may improve with a natural, whole food, healthy diet. Dogs are not picky and will eat just about anything you offer. Their diet, however, should consist of meats for high protein, and a healthy balance of carbohydrates and healthy fats. You can add bone broth and fresh or steamed vegetables to your dog’s diet as well. Foods like blueberries can be added to each meal to add antioxidants into your dog’s diet. Improving your dog’s overall diet will improve their health and tackle pain you may have a hard time controlling such as inflammatory arthritis pain. Though arthritis is common among some breeds, diet controls so much of your dog’s overall health. You can help your dog maintain or reach a healthy weight, taking stress off these painful joints and control inflammation and pain if you are being true to a whole food healthy diet. Never try to make a home-made diet without the input of a qualified nutritionist as there is a high risk of your dog becoming deficient in a micronutrient.


Consistent exercise is imperative for overall health. With diet and exercise, you can help your dog reach his ideal weight. Exercise will also keep those joints mobile, preventing them from getting stiff from disuse.


Adding supplements to your dog’s diet is easy. Glucosamine and antioxidants are necessary supplements for smooth joint movement. Antioxidants are found in colorful fruits and vegetables. They will help clean out toxins and repair damaged cells. Glucosamine occurs naturally in the cartilage of your dog’s joints. As damage is done over years, giving your dog glucosamine can help add this compound back to those joints, helping with pain and friction.

You can tackle and help to prevent many diseases along with arthritis by starting your puppy off with a healthy diet which feeds not only their hunger but also their cells. Diet and exercise are key to overall health. Your dog may still end up battling arthritis, but you can help ease their pain and potentially lessen the harmful degeneration with a healthy diet and regular exercise.

Efficacy of Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies in Dogs

For most dogs with established arthritis, conventional pain relief and anti-inflammatories will be needed to keep them comfortable.

Herbal remedies have been around for thousands of years. Some methods and herbs are proven effective for pain relief and inflammation. However, as with any natural remedy, holistic care requires dedication and commitment. Not only a commitment to your dog’s overall health to tackle the root of the problems, but also the commitment to the time it will take to get your dog to a healthy place.

Often times, natural remedies are used in conjunction with western medicine rather than in place of it.

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Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies Recovery in Dogs

Arthritis is painful. Ease your dog into these natural methods of relief and healing. With so many options, you can try several to get the right fit for your budget, your dog’s likes and dislikes, and the time you can give to care for your dog. Be patient. Your dog is not going to feel better overnight. But with time and lots of love, you will begin to see improvement. As your listless dog begins to exercise more, you can provide muscle massages (if tolerated) as they get used to increased exercise. Consider canine acupuncture, physiotherapy and hydrotherapy too.

 If you are changing your dog’s diet, make slow changes and include supplements or herbs in treats when possible. If you are adding new whole foods to your dog’s bowl, add bone broth as well to give the fruits and vegetables a meaty flavor the dog will enjoy.

Cost of Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies in Dogs

Natural care can be expensive at times, but adding herbs to improve your dog’s pain levels should cost under $25 a month. Giving your dog a whole food diet can be as simple as the cost of fruits and vegetables. You can use bones from your own chicken or beef meals to make bone broth to add to your dog’s food. If you choose to visit with a holistic or homeopathic veterinarian, you might find their training is different and, therefore, their office visits are more expensive. A typical office visit may be about $75 instead of $50, for example. Before committing to a holistic veterinarian, research the homeopathic veterinarians in your area. Many will do phone consults for a much lower rate. From a phone consultation, you can get advice on where to purchase herbs and how much to give your dog how based on condition, breed, and weight.

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Dog Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies Considerations

If your dog is a candidate for holistic arthritis treatment, you should consider their overall health as well. Obese and large breed dogs will have more issues with mobility than healthy dogs or smaller breeds. Before treating your dog’s arthritis, create an exercise and healthy meal plan to ensure success. Reducing stress on your dog’s joints will be a huge effect on their mobility.

Natural and Herbal Arthritis Remedies Prevention in Dogs

Some dogs are going to be susceptible to arthritis and joint pain. Large breeds carry heavy weight for years, putting stress on their bones and joints. Active dogs may also develop arthritis as they age because of the incredible activities they participate in when they are young. These things might not be stopped. But you can start your puppy off on the right foot with a proper diet and regular exercise. As your dog ages, keep them active to keep those muscles, bones, and joints from getting stiff. Add supplements as they age to improve mobility. And be sure to visit with your veterinarian on a regular basis for checkups.

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