Just as in human beings, cats undergo aging. Common signs of aging include joint pain among others. Joint pain can also be a result of infection, injury, or a degenerative disease such as arthritis.
This is usually very painful and may affect the quality of life of your pet. Joint pain usually occurs when cartilage, which is found in between joints starts to wear off. Cartilage is made from connective tissue and is flexible. It allows smooth movement in the joint.
Its degeneration either due to age, injury, or disease causes a lot of friction between the joint and accompanying pain and inflammation. Affected animals are usually rendered immobile or have difficulty walking or rising up.
To relieve pain and inflammation various anti-inflammatory drugs as well as joint supplements such as Cosequin for cats can be used. This is termed as conservative or symptomatic treatment.
What is Cosequin for cats?
Cosequin is a natural over the counter joint supplement used to relieve joint pain and other signs of degenerative joint disease. It contains 500mg of glucosamine and 400mg of chondrotin. It is usually a good alternative to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs which has serious side effects with long term use.
Cartilage found between joints helps in mobility by reducing friction and enhancing lubrication. Cartilage is produced by cells called chondrocytes. Cartilage is made of 2 compounds; collagen and proteoglycans.
Chondocytes use glucosamine to produce hyaluronic acid and glycosaminoglycans which lubricate the joints. Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound in the body. It stimulates the production of glycosaminoglycans which strengthens cartilage Glucosamine is derived from glucose and amino acids in the body.
Chondrotin is also a building block of cartilage produced by the body. It helps cartilage retain water which in turn helps to maintain its elasticity and prevent compression. As animals age glucosamine levels in the body decrease.
This often leads to the breakdown and degeneration of cartilage. Supplementing using exogenous glucosamine helps prevent further breakdown of cartilage and helps in its repair.
It also has anti-inflammatory properties which help to relieve joint pain and swelling. Chondroitin is also a naturally occurring compound in the body. It helps in maintaining the elasticity of cartilage by helping it retain water. This prevents the breakdown of cartilage common in degenerative diseases.
It also prevents enzymes from breaking down collagen found in cartilage as well as help in its repair. Chondroitin also has anti-inflammatory properties which help to relieve pain and swelling in affected joints.
Cosequin overall helps in maintaining joint health as well as the surrounding connective tissues. It helps in the production, maintenance, and repair of damaged cartilage.
Glucosamine and chondroitin contained in the supplements give additional strength to the cartilage improving overall joint health. Both glucosamine and chondrotin have anti-inflammatory properties which help to get rid of free radicals within the joints.
Cosequin comes highly recommended by a veterinarian due to its availability and safety as it has little to no side effects. It can also be used with other animals such as dogs and horses. Cosequin is also used to maintain bladder health in cats.
The inner lining of the urinary bladder has the same composition similar to cartilage. Chondroitin sulphate, therefore, helps to maintain and repair this layer. This prevents urine from penetrating the inner layers of the bladder which can lead to infection.
This drug is available in the form of capsules and chewable tablets and is normally sprinkled in moist food for consumption.
Sign your cat needs Cosequin
Cosequin is a natural supplement used to alleviate joint pain either due to infection, injury, or degenerative diseases. Obesity is also a common cause of arthritis. The extra weight exerts a lot of pressure on the joint which can lead to damage and degeneration of the bone cartilage.
It’s mostly given to an adult or senior cats that may have a case of arthritis. Studies show that 90% of cats over 12 years of age have arthritis. Common signs of joint degenerative diseases include:
- Difficulty rising up after a nap
- Difficulty climbing stairs or tabletop
- Difficulty walking
- Swelling of the joints
- Decreased joint flexibility
- Joint stiffness
- Pain when being handled in certain positions
- Bathroom accidents since they can’t walk to the litter box in time
- They become less active
- They go off food
- They tend to sleep more hours than usual
- Change in grooming habits i.e. over-grooming leaving the skin red and irritated or they stop grooming entirely.
Consequin comes in the form of chewable tablets or capsules. It also contains chicken and tuna flavor to help in administering it. It is given over a period of 4 to 6 weeks daily and when the desired effect has been observed it is later given every other day.
The dosage rate depends on the age, weight, and size of your cat. Cosequin contains 250mgs of glucosamine Hydrochloride derived from cow cartilage and 120mgs of Sodium Chondroitin Sulphate.
It can also be in the formulation of Glucosamine (500mg), Sodium Chondroitin Sulfate (400mg), Manganese (as ascorbate 2.5mg/5mg). It also contains small amounts of Magnesium ascorbate, gelatin, Magnesium stearate, and titanium dioxide among others.
The recommended dosage for Cosequin is half to one capsule a day in cats up to l0 lbs. After 6 weeks the dosage should be adjusted to half or one capsule every other day. For cats between 10 to 24 lbs, the dosage is 2 capsules once daily up to 6 weeks then 2 capsules every other day thereafter.
For cats taking tablets with 500mgs of glucosamine and 400mgs of chondroitin, the dosage should be half a tablet once daily up to 6 weeks and thereafter half a tablet every other day. Cosequin capsules can be pilled and sprinkled in food for easier administration.
If your cat feeds on dry food, it is advisable to moisten the food with some water to allow the powder to dissolve. Alternatively, the capsules or tablets can be inserted in a tablespoon of canned food and given. This ensures the full dose is ingested.
Cosequin for cats side effects
Cosequin is highly recommended by a veterinarian as a nutritional supplement due to the few side effects observed while under treatment. Adverse side effects are usually observed as a result of an overdose.
The most common side effect is diarrhea, vomiting, stomach upsets, and nausea. Cosequin should not be used in place with conventional treatment for arthritis, injury, or infection.
It is also known to cause insulin resistance and elevated blood sugar levels therefore should be used under the guidance of a veterinarian in diabetic cats. It is advised to have their blood glucose levels monitored all through the use of the supplements.
Joint Pain Prevention
Joint pain is inevitable, especially with age. Also, injuries, degenerative diseases, and infections never give a warning sign before they attack. It is therefore important to take preventative measures to maintain the integrity of the joints, especially during old age in all pets.
Cats especially have a good way of masking pain and at times it is hard for caregivers to know when to help or seek veterinary intervention. It is common that by the time the condition has been diagnosed, it has gone far too long and irreversible damage has already occurred.
Various preventative measures can be initiated to maintain the integrity of the joints. These include:
- A well-balanced diet. This ensures the body is well equipped to fight off infections and maintain the integrity of body structures including joints. This includes a diet rich in protein which helps in the growth and repair of muscles and body structures. Proteins are broken down into amino acids.
- Giving good sources of essential amino acids also help in maintaining the integrity of various structures in the body. Essential fatty acids e.g. Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids help to relieve inflammations by oxidizing free radicals which damage the integrity of cells. They also help to relieve pain and swelling.
- Vitamins such as vitamin D help in relieving joint pain and relieving inflammation. Its deficiency also leads to softening and breakage of bones. It also helps to boost the immune system, therefore, preventing the occurrence of rheumatoid arthritis. Minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium are essential for the growth of strong and healthy bones. They also help to reduce pain and inflammation.
- Maintaining good food portions helps to prevent obesity. Obesity exerts a lot of pressure on the joints leading to the breakdown of cartilage leading to joint pain predisposing them to arthritis.
- Regular exercise helps to boost blood flow and circulation to the joints. This helps to nourish the joint structures which help in joint health and reduce pain. Good blood circulation helps to supply white blood cells to joint structures which help to fight infection and reduce inflammation.
Natural Solutions for Joint Health
Natural remedies for pain relief are also beneficial just like pharmaceutical prescription drugs. Such include:
- Omega fatty acids e.g Omega 3 and 6 help in reducing inflammatory processes in the body by getting rid of free radicals. They also help to relieve pain.
- Acupuncture helps to increase blood perfusion to the joints as well as reduce inflammation. This is done by inserting needles in pressure points.
- Glucosamine: this can be derived from crustaceans. It helps to relieve joint pain as well as support the repair of cartilage.
- CBD oil has proven to be a good pain reliever.
Chronic joint pain from degenerative diseases e.g. arthritis, injury, or infection can affect the quality of life of cats, especially during old age. As cats age, the cartilage found between the joints starts to break down. This causes a lot of friction between joints which causes a lot of pain.
This often progresses to arthritis thus Glucosamine and chondrotin are essential in maintaining joint integrity. Glucosamine helps in the formation of hyaluronic acid and glycosaminoglycans which helps in the lubrication of joints. It also helps to reduce inflammation by getting rid of free radicals.
Cosequin contains Glucosamine Hydrochloride and chondrotin sulphate as the active ingredients. Glucosamine helps in the repair of cartilage and also has anti-inflammatory properties.
Chondrotin on the other hand helps to maintain elasticity of bone cartilage by helping it to retain water. It also has anti-inflammatory properties which help to relieve pain. Cosequin is given in the form of capsules and chewable tablets.
It should be given at a dosage rate of half to one tablet per day for 6 weeks. Thereafter a maintenance dosage of one capsule every other day should be observed. An overdose of the above is likely to cause stomach upsets, nausea, and diarrhea.
Maintaining a healthy diet, regular exercise, a good weight helps to prevent degenerative changes in the joint. Natural methods of relieving joint pain such as CBD oil, acupuncture, use of essential fatty acids and glucosamine have been shown to help just like other pharmaceutical drugs with fewer side effects.
Cosequin for Cats
Seeing your beloved pet in pain is never easy. Why not give cosequin a try.
- Ease of Administering