Sarah Wilson

Dog Expert

Dog Joint Supplement Treats – How to Avoid Getting Stiffed


Dog Joint Supplement Treats - How to Avoid Getting StiffedThere are companies out there selling you dog joint supplement treats as being nearly medicinal that are a long way from it! These are normally really good companies who are not being straight forward in this arena. And that makes me mad on your behalf and on behalf of your dog.

There are two common tactics being used to sell dog joint treats that you must understand to avoid getting a whole lot less than what you think you are paying for.

Let’s start with what is a meaningful amount of glucosamine, one of most common ingredients people look for when buying joint support for their dogs.

Dosages that are effective for joint support do vary slightly but I generally see it listed as around:

250-500 mgs; Under 25 Pounds
500 mgs: 25-50 Pounds
1000 mgs: 50-100 Pounds
1500 mgs: 100+ pounds

For my dog, Pip, 500 mgs a day is about right.

Now there’s a top-rated treat by a company I otherwise adore that sells a treat promising it supports mobility without pills, liquids or powders. Sure sounds medicinal, doesn’t it?

Their ingredient lists states amount of glucosamine in terms of maximum amount per treat.

Maximum. That’s truthful but misleading. Nearly everything else is listed as minimum amount because minimum amounts tells you what you are getting. Maximum amount tells you nothing. Each treat could – in all honesty – contain “0” of that ingredient and that wording would still be accurate.

One thing I can promise you is if a company has a meaningful amount of glucosamine in a treat they will proudly state it. And if they don’t, they won’t.

The other common cagey way of presenting this info is to list amount per kg (kg = kilograms = 2.2 pounds). The worst offender in that “We count on your ignorance but can claim honesty” group tells you that their hip and joint treat will “support” your dog’s joints at 750 mgs/kg.

Pip would have to eat around 1.5 pounds of treats to get her daily dose.


So, what can you do?

Do what I do. There is no reason to mix the business of joint support with the pleasure of treats. There are many excellent dog joint supplements on the market. Use one of them to help your dog then get whatever treat you want.

There are many terrific brands. Through the years I’ve used: Nutramax (Cosequin and Dasuquin)Joint MaxMissing Link and Glyco-Flex.

Also, there are great joint supplement soft chews that dogs happily eat like a treat –

And lastly, if you and your dog like one treats labeled as hip or joint healthy but isn’t really go ahead and use them – as treats. No harm in that, just not much help either.

Now you know.


  1. That’s interesting. I had no idea. I actually bought some “hip & joint” treats for our little terrier a couple months ago. I had to stop giving them to her though because we just found out she’s diabetic and can’t have most treats. Sad that you have to worry about so many misleading claims.

    • Hi Heidi – Sorry to hear about your dog; diabetes is a sadly growing concern. She is lucky she has you. A blog on treats that work for many diabetic dogs listed here:

      Yes, I agree about misleading claims and will be doing my best here to inform others.

      Thanks for stopping by and a pat to your dog. – Sarah

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