The use of supplements is on the rise, not only for humans but also for our furry companions. While a balanced diet remains fundamental in meeting your pet's nutritional requirements, supplements may play a valuable role in addressing specific deficiencies.
Supplements, such as glucosamine, fatty acids, and multivitamins, may be beneficial for dogs facing the challenges of natural aging or young puppies with increased dietary needs during their developmental stages.
With this in mind, we have curated a selection of our best dog supplements on the market to improve your pet's nutrition and enhance its quality of life.
Best dog supplements: a shortlist
- Rusty's Pet Essentials — best dog supplement for joint health
- Real Mushrooms — best pet supplement for stress relief
- Gussy's Gut — best food supplement for dogs to support digestive health
- Wild Earth — best supplement to support the immune system of dogs
- Ruff Greens — best multivitamin supplement for dogs
How did we choose the best supplements for dogs?
We have compiled some key criteria to consider when it comes to selecting the best dog supplements. Our criteria aim to provide all the essential information to help owners find the perfect product for their canine companion.
|Science-backed ingredients||High quality ingredients backed by scientific research|
|Lab-tested||Ingredients align with the label and are free from harmful substances|
|Adequate dosage||Quantities of ingredients tailored to your dog's breed and size|
|Manufacturing practices||Full disclosure of production practices and ingredient origins|
- Price. We assessed the quality of various dog supplements and conducted a price comparison.
- Science-backed ingredients. Animal supplements currently exist in a regulatory gray area, with neither the FDA nor the American Veterinary Medical Association providing specific guidelines. Therefore, we have chosen products containing high-quality and science-backed ingredients that may support your dog's health.
- Lab-tested. We chose supplements with ingredients that undergo testing to ensure alignment with label claims, along with additional certification provided by third-party labs.
- Adequate dosage. Different dogs may require varying dosages depending on their health condition, size, breed, and other factors. We've selected brands and products to accommodate the diverse needs of dogs.
- Transparent manufacturing practices. We evaluated brand transparency and certifications to ensure that products adhere to good manufacturing practices and production processes.
Top 5 supplements for dogs: detailed reviews
Navigating the dog supplement market can be challenging due to the abundance of brands and the absence of regulation.
Therefore, we have conducted a comprehensive review and compiled products containing science-backed ingredients like glucosamine, fatty acids, and multivitamins. These ingredients may play a role in enhancing the diets of dogs with deficiencies or those requiring additional support.
1. Rusty's Pet Essentials — best supplement to support dog mobility
Rusty's Hip & Joint Support supplements are crafted with a blend of organic ingredients aimed at enhancing the health of dogs, especially those in need of additional support for their hips and joints.
These treats are sourced in the USA and handcrafted in their Florida facilities, guaranteeing the absence of harmful substances or fillers in their formula.
The supplements are specially tailored for elderly dogs and incorporate ingredients like glucosamine and chondroitin, renowned for their potential to support cartilage formation. Additional active components include organic turmeric and wild salmon oil, which are aimed at boosting canine mobility and alleviating discomfort.
Rusty recommends daily supplement consumption for dogs of all breeds, with dosage determined by the dog's weight:
|Under 10 lbs (4 kg)||1 chew|
|10–30 lbs (4–13 kg)||2 chews|
|31–60 lbs (14–27 kg)||3 chews|
|61–90 lbs (28–41 kg)||4 chews|
|Over 90 lbs (41 kg)||5 chews|
It is available for $34.99 and includes 170 chews per bottle.
2. Real Mushrooms — best pet supplement to manage stress
Mushroom Relax Pet Chews offer a unique formula that harnesses the soothing properties of beta-glucan to alleviate pet stress and promote their overall well-being.
Tested by third-party labs and free from grains and fillers, this product is an ideal choice for supporting dogs during periods of distress. This supplement is made with lion's mane and reishi mushrooms, both sourced from Nammex Supply, a reputable company dedicated to providing mushrooms free from heavy metals and microbial contamination.
The treats contain 80 mg of mushrooms and added ingredients like L-Theanine and L-Tryptophan, which may contribute to inducing relaxation and reducing distress in pets. Among the enriched formula, beta-glucan stands out for its potential metabolic and immunological benefits.
The brand recommends that dogs consume 1 chew for every 20–40 pounds (9–18 kg) of body weight daily, or as advised by your veterinarian.
It is available for $34.95 and includes 60 servings per package.
3. Gussy's Gut — best pet supplement to aid with digestion
Gussy's Gut Fermented Organic Superfoods is a supplement that combines 19 fermented foods to support dog's digestion and vitality. Made by in-house experts and freeze-dried to preserve all the nutrients in its organic ingredients, the brand delivers uncompromising quality to the dog food market.
These supplements are handcrafted in small batches and sourced from sustainable farmers. Additionally, they are free from herbicides or pesticides, adhering to high production standards. Even the salt used by the brand is ancient seabed salt from Utah, free from pollutants.
Gussy contains 180 nutrients to boost dog nutrition, including turmeric, broccoli, and dandelion, known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Broccoli, in particular, is rich in glucosinolates, flavonoids, vitamins, and minerals, all of which have potential antioxidant properties.
The recommended serving is 1 teaspoon per 10–20 pounds (4–9 kg) of the dog's weight. Owners can sprinkle it on top of raw, kibble, or wet food and add water to hydrate the ingredients. The dosage is estimated based on weight:
|10 lbs (4 kg)||½ teaspoon|
|20 lbs (9 kg)||1 teaspoon|
|40 lbs (18 kg)||2 teaspoons|
|60 lbs (27 kg)||3 teaspoons|
|80 lbs (36 kg)||4 teaspoons|
It is available for $37.00 and includes 50 servings per pack.
4. Wild Earth — best supplement to boost the immune system of pets
Wild Earth’s Immunity & Digestion Dog Supplements are designed to support pet immunity through a combination of active ingredients such as mushrooms, enzymes, and probiotics, promoting improved digestion and fiber support for dogs.
With a plant-based formula rooted in cruelty-free and high-quality ingredients, Wild Earth strives to create a sustainable product that benefits both animals and the environment. Their recipe incorporates a blend of mushrooms, including reishi, cordyceps, and chaga, renowned for their anti-inflammatory properties.
These supplements also feature a probiotic blend aimed at gut health, including Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus probiotic strains. These strains are associated with improvements in the immune system, stress reduction, and relief from diarrhea.
Wild Earth recommends starting with half the suggested dose and gradually increasing it to the recommended daily amount. Owners can choose to split the serving between morning and evening if desired. The daily serving is based on the dog’s weight:
|Up to 25 lbs (11 kg)||1 chew|
|26–75 lbs (12–34 kg)||2 chews|
|Over 75 lbs (34 kg)||3 chews|
It is available for $30.00 and includes a 30-day guarantee policy.
5. Ruff Greens — best vitamin supplement for pets
Ruff Greens VitaSmart supplements, crafted in the USA and meticulously monitored in FDA-registered facilities, offer a formula with high-quality ingredients free from harmful substances. Additionally, these supplements hold cGMP certification and do not contain any artificial flavors and colors.
The supplements introduce a highly concentrated blend of fruits, vegetables, and digestive enzymes to aid in dog’s digestion and joint health. Among the list of ingredients, minerals like iron or magnesium stand out for their properties in promoting muscle growth and increasing energy levels.
The brand encourages dog owners to incorporate the supplement into their pet's daily diet based on their preferences, whether given by hand or sprinkled on top of food. The dosage should be considered concerning dog’s weight:
|Up to 40 lbs (18 kg)||1 tablespoon|
|Over 40 lbs (18 kg)||2 tablespoons|
It is available for $79.95 and includes 28 servings for standard dogs.
Comparing the top dog supplements
|Product||Price||Average serving||Total amount per package||Main Ingredients||Vegan|
|Rusty's Pet Essentials||$34.99*||2 chews||170 chews||Glucosamine, chondroitin, and wild salmon oil||Yes|
|Real Mushrooms||$34.95||1 chew||60 chews||Beta-glucan||Yes|
|Gussy's Gut||$37.00*||2 teaspoons||50 teaspoons||Multivitamins||Yes|
|Wild Earth||$30.00||2 chews||60 chews||Organic mushroom blend, fructooligosaccharide, digestive enzyme blend, and probiotics||Yes|
|Ruff Greens||$79.95||1 teaspoon||28 tablespoons||Multivitamins, digestive enzymes, and probiotics||Yes|
* — prices may vary depending on the package size and number of units
Should you consider giving supplements to your dog?
Dogs, like humans, require a balanced diet to maintain a good quality of life. However, some animals may not receive adequate nutritional support from conventional feed. Dietary supplements for dogs should be considered to support their health and mitigate any potential deficiencies.
Furthermore, certain dogs may require additional support during specific life stages. For instance, senior dogs often face mobility issues and joint stiffness. Supplements containing ingredients like glucosamine and chondroitin, known for their anti-inflammatory effects and joint support, can help manage these symptoms. Additionally, other alternatives like CBD may also help induce relaxation and enhance dog's well-being.
However, before introducing any supplement into a dog's diet, consulting with a veterinarian is crucial.
Supplements for puppies vs. senior dogs
Senior dogs and puppies have different nutritional needs and require different dosages and ingredients in their supplements.
Elderly dogs often contend with age-related conditions such as arthritis, obesity, and digestive issues. Common ingredients for senior dogs include:
- Glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health
- Probiotics for digestive health
- Omega-3 fatty acids to support skin and coat health
- Multivitamins to address potential deficiencies
On the other hand, puppies may benefit from supplements to support their growth, particularly in developing bones and joints. Products for puppies often contain:
- Calcium to support bone and teeth development
- Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) to support brain and vision development
- Probiotics to aid with digestion and immune support
- Multivitamins to mitigate deficiencies
In any case, it is advisable to consult with a veterinarian to determine the best nutritional supplements for dogs based on your pet's specific needs.
Organic vs. synthetic supplements for dogs
Organic and synthetic supplements differ in their production methods. Organic supplements are created without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, or genetic engineering (GMOs). In contrast, synthetic supplements are lab-produced.
However, it's important to note that the efficacy of certain ingredients may not depend on whether they are organic or synthetic, as some compounds can only be produced synthetically to ensure their suggested health benefits. Therefore, dog owners should prioritize evaluating the quality and ingredients of dog supplements rather than their origins. Additionally, it is important to remember that dogs metabolize drugs, supplements, and foods differently than humans, so caution with these products is always needed.
How to introduce new dog supplements to your dog's diet?
Dogs should take nutritional supplements for pets if they are facing deficiencies or require additional support for specific health conditions. In cases where a balanced diet already provides all essential vitamins and minerals, supplements and multivitamins may not be necessary.
When introducing supplements, it's crucial to do so gradually to minimize any potential discomfort or adverse reactions in pets. This process should be guided by a veterinarian to assess the necessity and select the most suitable supplements for your dog. Owners should thoroughly review product labels to understand the best practices for administration.
Best dog supplements: conclusion
Dietary supplements for dogs can enhance their well-being and address specific nutritional deficiencies. Common ingredients like vitamins, enzymes, or probiotics may aid in supporting their digestive, joint, and coat health.
A balanced diet is the key to a good quality of life for a dog, and pet owners should ensure that their furry friends get all the necessary vitamins and minerals in their diet.
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Are supplements safe for all dog breeds?
It depends. Certain nutrition supplements for dogs may raise concerns regarding the safety and quality control of their formulas, particularly in terms of dosage. Therefore, it is always advisable to consult with a veterinarian to select the appropriate product and dosage for your dog.
Can I mix supplements with dog food?
It varies. Some health supplements for dogs should be taken separately from food, while others are best absorbed when mixed with dog food. Moreover, some supplements may have a bitter or unfavorable taste, and mixing them with food can help with the administration.
How often should I give my dog these supplements?
It depends. Some brands recommend daily intake, while others suggest a more sporadic consumption. In any case, it is always important to discuss the dosage with a vet, taking into consideration your dog's health condition, eating habits, activity levels, and more.
Are nutritional supplements for dogs really worth it?
A balanced diet should ideally provide all the essential nutrients your dog needs. However, certain life stages or conditions may necessitate additional support through supplements to meet increased nutrient requirements.
- Nutrition Today. Veterinary Pet Supplements and Nutraceuticals.
- Journal of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics. Review of dietary supplements for the management of osteoarthritis in dogs in studies from 2004 to 2014.
- Animals. Alpha-Lipoic Acid as a Nutritive Supplement for Humans and Animals: An Overview of Its Use in Dog Food.
- Open Veterinary Journal. Glucosamine and chondroitin use in canines for osteoarthritis: A review.
- Archives of Animal Nutrition. Dog food production using curcumin as antioxidant: effects of intake on animal growth, health and feed conservation.