Best Dog Food For Arthritis – Top Picks & Comparisons!

If you have an arthritic dog or an older dog who suffers from joint pain, you know how important it is to provide arthritis pain relief. But did you know that your dog's diet can be a culprit in aggravating their arthritic pain?

A careful change in your dog's diet can reduce the inflammation that causes pain in their joints and reduced mobility. But what is the best dog food for joint pain? What should you look for in a dog food recipe? Some dog food brands make prescription formulas specific to dogs who suffer from joint pain or arthritis.

However, you do not have to rely on specific formulas through prescribed diets, which can often be much more expensive than regular foods. Once you learn the common inflammation-producers in your dog's diet, you'll know what to avoid in a new food formula and what to look for in a high-quality dog food.

As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to take care of your dog in every way. We want to help educate you so you know how to properly help your dog with arthritis get better and live a happy, healthy life!​

Reviews of Best Dog Food for Arthritis

For more information on arthritis in dogs and to learn what can help him in addition to a healthy diet, watch this informative video by MaxxiDog:​

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Hill’s Prescription Diet Metabolic + Mobility
Weight & Joint Care


This formula by Hill's is known as a best dog food for dogs with arthritis by veterinarians and dog owners. Notable nutritionists and veterinarians developed this formula specifically to improve a dog's ability to walk, run, and jump.

Additionally, you may notice an improvement in your arthritic dog's mobility and loss of weight in just a few weeks after switching to this diet. It will keep your dog full in between meals to keep your dog at a healthy dog weight.

Hill's Prescription Diet contains Omega 3 fatty acid, glucosamine and chondroitin, all of which are extremely important in your arthritic dog's diet and help provide arthritis pain relief. There are also no added fats, and your dog will benefit from the several digestion-aiding ingredients, like pea flour and flaxseed.

Hill’s Prescription Diet j/d Joint Care


Another favorite by Hill's, the Hill's Prescription Diet j/d Joint Care formula is a canned food that also promises to improve your dog's mobility in about 21 days.

This dog food recipe targets joint pain and restricted mobility with Omega 3 fatty acid and EPA to aid in healthy cartilage. Additionally, Hill's Prescription Diet for joint care has restricted calories to help manage your dog's weight.

A lower weight can prevent added stress on your dog's joints, improving overall mobility and reducing pain over time. Chondroitin and glucosamine are also added to this formula for increased care and relief for your dog with arthritis.

Purina ProPlan Veterinary Diets JM Joint Mobility


Manny dog owners rave about Purina's ProPlan Veterinary Diets that target specific dietary needs of dogs. This formula is for adult and senior dogs who suffer from arthritis, joint pain, or decreased joint mobility.

With glucosamine, EPA, and Omega 3 fatty acids, the formula has much of what you would expect in your arthritic dog's diet. Purina also encourages building lean muscle mass, rather than weight gain from fat, with its high protein-to-calorie ratio.

When your dog turns fat into muscle, he will be able to support his own dog weight better, rather than his bones and joints doing it for him.

Royal Canin Maxi Joint & Coat Dry Dog Food


Many of the same ingredients that cause skin and coat issues in dogs can also cause joint inflammation and pain. Royal Canin created this formula to help both of these common issues dogs suffer from.

It is made specifically for large and mature breed dogs over 15 months between 55 and 59 pounds who suffer from coat and joint sensitivities.

This Royal Canin formula targets a healthy weight for less stress on your dog's joints. It also introduces quality proteins and ingredients that aid in digestion for less risk of the body absorbing inflammatory protein.

Glucosamine and chondroitin are listed within the Guaranteed Analysis, and this formula has plenty of both for healthy joints.

Dogswell Happy Hips for Hip & Joint Wellness


Another formula specifically for joint health is Dogswell Happy Hips for Hip & Joint Wellness. This high-quality dog food formula is a grain-free dog food with quality proteins and a balanced diet containing fruits and veggies.

That means there is absolutely no grains, corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors. This is, perhaps, the most balanced formula from these five dog foods with antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables like spinach, cranberries, and blueberries.

It also has a lot of healthy supplements for joint and hip health, like glucosamine, chondroitin, and Vitamin D-3, which helps build and maintain strong bones. It includes chelated minerals for better nutrient absorption.

Feeding your dog this grain free can dog food will provide them a high-protein diet that they need to get healthier.​ You cannot go wrong with this product because it has all the nutrition your dog needs to get better!

What to Look for in Dog Food for Arthritis?

If you a pet owner looking for the best dog food for arthritic dogs, you probably already have a dog who suffers. You should understand what in a dog’s diet helps relieve pain and prevent further joint damage. The best dog food for older dogs with joint problems or younger dogs prone to joint pain typically include:

  • Low fat from meats: Fatty meats can actually aggravate a dog's joint pain. Some cheaper dog foods tend to add animal fats for extra, cheaper protein.
  • Anti-inflammatory fruits and veggies: Zucchini, lettuce, apples, and other fruits and vegetables with anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce pain in arthritic dogs. The best dog food for senior dogs with arthritis or other dogs with joint pain will have a healthy balance of fruits, veggies, and meats.
  • Low grain content: Many grains have inflammatory properties that can aggravate dogs with arthritis or joint pain. Your dog's food does not need to be a grain-free dog food, but make sure it has a healthy balance of grains and other ingredients. Additionally, grains should never be the main protein source.
  • Omega 3's: Quality fish oil, like Omega 3's, can help reduce inflammation that causes pain in dogs. Avoid cheaper oil substitutes, like sunflower, corn, or vegetable oils.

Additionally, probiotics and digestive enzymes can help aid your dog's digestion and break down proteins fast. This is important in preventing inflammatory reactions. And, added chondroitin and glucosamine in your dog's food can help lubricate joints and help the body rebuild and strengthen damaged tissues.

Final Thoughts​

Dogs who suffer from arthritis or joint pain should be fed a healthy diet that promotes joint health and a healthy weight. It is also important to consider a diet rich with fruits and veggies, which are excellent, natural sources of antioxidants.

Remember to choose a food with limited grains and animal fats, both of which can cause additional inflammation and pain. You should be feeding your dog a high-protein diet. The five choices I reviewed for best dog food for arthritic dogs offer added supplements for rebuilding and strengthening cartilage.

Additionally, they provide a good balance of ingredients to help maintain a healthy weight and get your dog moving with limited pain.

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