DASUQUIN and COSEQUIN for Arthritis in Dogs and Cats

Dasuquin is our number one choice in cartilage-protecting neutraceuticals.

Dasuquin is our number one choice in cartilage-protecting neutraceuticals.

Arthritis.

Glucosamine.

Chondroitin.

Dasuquin and Cosequin.

Seems simple enough to some of us, doesn’t it?

As much as I dislike bursting bubbles, I’ll have to. There is very little in the practice of medicine that is simple.

The good news is that with dogs and cats most arthritis is limited to one kind: osteoarthritis.

Regardless of the cause of arthritis the end result is damage to the cartilage lining of the joint. Such damage changes the cartilage from a smooth, low-friction gliding surface to one that is rough. Eventually the cartilage may be lost altogether, resulting in bone rubbing on bone.

Osteoarthritis can be caused by a number of factors, the most common of which is age.

Trauma is the next most common insult and trauma can result from being hit by a car, kicked by a horse or being shot. Trauma may also occur when joints are pounded repeatedly, such as jumping up to catch a Frisbee, high-impact agility competition, hunting or other types of field work.

Joints may also be traumatized by infection, and infection may damage only one joint, such as when a splinter enters the space. Multiple joints may become infected when bacteria circulate in the bloodstream to the joints.

Any level of roughness in cartilage causes a joint to experience heat, swelling, redness, pain and loss of function which are the cardinal signs of inflammation. Because a joint’s heat, swelling and redness are deep inside the body, it’s unlikely you will notice the earliest signs of arthritis. Even pain may be suppressed by a stoic pet whose instincts tell him to avoid showing signs of weakness. But when pain reaches a point that he cries out, limps or even begins to carry a leg it becomes obvious that something is wrong. This is the point at which “loss of function” becomes obvious.

The actual function of glucosamine and chondroitin in arthritis is scientifically complicated, but the bottom line is that they work together as “chondroprotectives”, cartilage-protecting ingredients to lubricate joints and slow the breakdown of cartilage.  A joint that has adequate amounts of protective fluid is one that will last longer, work better and hurt less.

So, just run out to the store and get some glucosamine and chondroitin and you’re set, right?

Not so fast.
Glucosamine Analysis:
Analytical studies on randomly-purchased products have shown that some products didn’t live up to their billing. In fact, some products claiming to contain glucosamine and chondroitin contained none of either!What’s a pet lover to do?

Go with the manufacturer who has every product submitted to an independent laboratory for compliance analysis. Nutramax Laboratories is the only manufacturer whose products have been certified to contain the actual amount of glucosamine and chondroitin that the label claims.

Nutramax has for many years made the very effective and successful Cosequin combination of ingredients. Cosequin is still available, but a new formulation called Dasuquin is now in the line. Dasuquin contains additional ingredients that Nutramax Laboratories’ researchers have shown to give outstanding improvements to arthritic joints in dogs and cats.

Success with Dasuquin in our own practice has reinforced those findings, as even our spry 15-year-old family cat, Martha, will testify.

In summary, if your veterinarian has diagnosed your cat or dog with arthritis, ask whether he might benefit from use of Dasuquin from Nutramax Laboratories.

4 thoughts on “DASUQUIN and COSEQUIN for Arthritis in Dogs and Cats

  1. Jo

    Dr. Randolph, thank you for your helpful articles! Please give me some guidance. I have a 19 yr old neutered male cat with chronic osteoarthritis (mainly in his hips), causing a great deal of pain and stress. Cosequin used to help but no longer does. This cat also has stage 3 CRD [EDITOR'S NOTE: Chronic renal Disease. Click here to read more.] for which he is being treated with daily subcutaneous fluids, phosphate binder and Azodyl. He has a heart arrhythmia which is controlled with atenolol; and hyperthyroidism for which he takes Felimazole. [EDITOR'S NOTE: Click here and here to read more about hyperthyroidism.](This is his 2nd bout with hyperthyroidism in 7 yrs. The 1st time, he had I131, but is no longer a candidate for that due to age and other illnesses.)

    Because of the other diseases, I’ve (unsuccessfully) tried non-NSAID treatments for his arthritis pain: transdermal tramadol, gabapentin (small dose makes him goofy), Duralactin, acupuncture, handheld infrared device, fish oil, and various homeopathy remedies. He is underweight and getting weak in the hind legs. His fairly frequent CBC [EDITOR'S NOTE: Click here to read about the Complete Blood Count test.] and blood panel [EDITOR'S NOTE: Click here to read about the Chemistry Panel.] look quite good for his age and illnesses, so I feel his poor weight, appetite and leg weakness is due mainly to the arthritis. He is on a very small dose of Felimazole (which keeps T4 in mid-normal range), so I don’t think he has nausea from it.

    SO. Is it time to consider something like a very small NSAID dose despite the huge risks due to his many other illnesses? This scares the heck outta me, but I feel like he can’t go on much further and feel I am being cruel allowing his pain to continue. If I don’t get this poor cat some relief soon, I feel euthanasia is going to have to be considered.

    Would you please let me know your thoughts on this, and if there is any other drug or supplement you would first try? I have not tried Denosyl. Gave it to another cat years ago and each time she received a dose, she would vomit…so it scares me a bit.

    Tons of thanks!

    Reply
    1. Dr. James W. Randolph Post author

      Jo, you are to be congratulated for all of the TLC it took to get your kitty to age 19. That is quite an accomplishment! Here are my thoughts:
      In place of Cosequin you might want to try Dasuquin. Its added ingredients might give him a bit of additional relief. Give it at least six weeks before thinking it’s not helping.

      That said, ask your veterinarian about Adequan (Click here to read about Adequan.) While its use in cats is extra-label, (Click here to read about off-label use.), it has been used with success in many cats around the world. Ultimately, the decision of whether to use it in this case depends on a discussion between you and your veterinarian.

      As for NSAID use in your kitty, what does your treating veterinarian say about it? If he has not yet begun an NSAID, he must have reservations.

      Options for treating arthritis in cats are somewhat more limited than in dogs. Looking at the big picture, though, treatment options in people are even limited to similar constraints as in pets, except that we live long enough to have joint replacements.
      Thank you for reading and for writing. Let us know if we may help in the future. Also, we would love to know what path you take and how your kitty responds, Dr. Randolph.

      Reply
      1. Jo

        Dr. Randolph, I was very excited to have received a reply from you! Thank you so much for your time and expertise in answering my post. You are the cat’s meow!

        I ordered Dasuquin after reading your article. It arrived and I started Lucky on 2 caps daily just yesterday. He will not eat it in or on his wet food, so I mix it with a small spoonful of baby food meat and water, then syringe feed it.

        I failed to mention that I HAVE indeed tried Adequan on Lucky. In fact, after 4 weeks of twice weekly dosing, he is now in the maintenance phase. Frankly, I have not seen an improvement in either cat, but am staying the course.

        As a last resort before trying an NSAID, we just started him on Buprenex transmucosal liquid. I can’t tell if it’s helping to relieve pain, but he does seem to get what I call a little “lovey-dovey” with me…a little goofy, a lot of head butting, that sort of thing.

        My vet HAS mentioned meloxicam, low dose prednisolone or Fentanyl patches. I have been the one reluctant to opt for any of those.

        I can see how pred would work well on the inflammation–plus help to increase his relatively poor appetite, which would be wonderful!–but after having two cats go diabetic on me after pred treatment, that scares the bejeebies outta me!

        I gather from your post that I should trust my vet and follow through with the meloxicam–but I would insist on a very low dose since he has such a high sensitivity to drugs (slow metabolism?) and continue to do follow up blood tests.

        If you have any thoughts on the low dose prednisolone option, I would love to hear them!

        Many thanks again. I am forever grateful.

        Jo

        Reply
        1. Dr. James W. Randolph Post author

          Jo, I’m with you on the Adequan treatment. While you might not be able to SEE changes, there are certainly changes going on inside those 19-year-old joints that must be helping. Corticosteroids, on the other hand, such as prednisone and prednisolone, will only make the joints worse in the long run, to say nothing of the long-term effects on other body parts. AND, you certainly CANNOT use corticosteroids and NSAIDs together. Sounds like Lucky is getting great care, Jo! Keep up the good work and keep us posted, Dr. Randolph. PS: There is no greater compliment you could give me than to call me “the cat’s meow!”

          Reply

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