What Is Cosequin for Dogs?


Cosequin is a nutritional supplement that helps improve your dog’s well being by supporting its overall joint health. It is a veterinarian-recommended supplement that is made with essential ingredients such as sodium chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine hydrochloride. However, it is advisable to consult with your local veterinarian before deciding which nutritional supplement formulation is suitable for your dog. In this article, we will help you determine the efficacy, side effects, dosage, and benefits involved in the use of Cosequin for dogs.


Some of the most common illnesses that interfere with the joint health of your dog include arthritis and other degenerative joint diseases. This is very common among heavy-built dogs due to the excessive amounts of pressure exerted on their joints. Active dogs are also prone to joint problems due to performing frequent high-impact activities. However, dormant overweight dogs are at a higher risk of joint pains due to the intense strain exerted on the joints. There are a number of ways to solve this problem, one of which is through the various joint nutritional supplements available in the market. These joint supplements usually vary in quality, from those packed with the nutrients needed to strengthen, lubricate, and maintain your dog’s joints to those containing only basic nutrients. Nonetheless, the highly veterinarian-recommended joint supplement for dogs with joint problems is Cosequin.

What Is Cosequin?

Dogs naturally enjoy being involved in active activities, but as they get older, they begin to become less active. The main reason behind this change is the frequent wear and tear of their joints that leads to inflammation and pain. Fortunately, there are so many nutritional supplement products available on the market that are manufactured to help concerned pet owners maintain their dog’s joints as both healthy and strong. Cosequin is among the top veterinarian-recommended nutritional supplements for treating dogs with damaged joints due to degenerative joint diseases such as hip dysplasia, cruciate disease, osteoarthritis, and elbow dysplasia. It contains a perfect blend of ingredients that help provide pain relief, promote healthy cartilage, reduce inflammation, and promote joint mobility. Additionally, Cosequin is used to help dogs with undeveloped joints.

Different Types of Cosequin

Generally, there are several types of Cosequin, with each product designed using the same formulation but with different additional ingredients. They include:

  • Cosequin Max strength plus MSM
  • Cosequin Max strength plus MSM and HA
  • Cosequin Max strength plus MSM and Omega 3
  • Cosequin DS Max strength plus MSM and Boswelia
  • Cosequin DS and DS Max strength
  • Cosequin Hip and Joint plus MSM
  • Cosequin Regular
  • Cosequin Advanced

With so many options to choose from, it can prove to be challenging to decide which product is best for your dog. Therefore, it is advisable to consult with your vet to help you choose a supplement that meets your dog’s individual nutrient requirements. However, if you want to provide your pet with the extra benefits of hyaluronic acid or MSM products, then you should consider going for the Cosequin Advanced. This is because it contains additional minerals and vitamins.

Ingredients in Cosequin

Cosequin is a multi-component nutritional supplement that contains some of the most well-researched and common ingredients found in joint supplements, such as sodium chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine hydrochloride. Like other extra-strength supplements, Cosequin may contain extra ingredients like Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) and hyaluronic acid (HA). Moreover, Cosequin is customarily considered the most vet-recommended supplement due to its effective formulation ingredients. All the components function in a unique way to produce a more significant effect on reducing inflammation, supporting cartilage production, providing pain relief, and slowing cartilage destruction. Below are some of the essential ingredients used in Cosequin products:

  • Hyaluronic Acid (HA). This is a gel-like substance that facilitates proper lubrication in the joints, reduces inflammation, and promotes the regeneration of new tissues and cells within the joints. Therefore, supplementing hyaluronic acid to dogs with joint disease helps improve the overall functionality of their joints.
  • Sodium chondroitin sulfate. It works by promoting elasticity and water retention by keeping the cartilage strong. Thus, supplementing chondroitin may repair damaged cartilage and reduce inflammation and pain.
  • Glucosamine hydrochloride. This is one of the essential components in cartilage matrix production that acts as a shock absorber within the joints. Supplementing glucosamine hydrochloride may help prevent cartilage damage and maintain normal cartilage structure.
  • Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM). This is a sulfur-containing compound that works by blocking pain impulses through nerve fibers to provide various anti-inflammatory effects.

How Does It Work?

Cosequin products can be administered to deal with joint problems in the form of a capsule or chewable tablet. Regardless of the form, each Cosequin supplement contains both essential nutrients: glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate. The two essential ingredients are very vital components needed to enhance the body’s natural healing mechanism for repairing damaged joints. These supplements also include manganese ascorbate, which helps accelerate the process of joint recovery. The efficacy of the Cosequin formula has been subjected to clinical trials multiple times and approved by veterinarians worldwide as exhibiting no adverse side effects. Moreover, Cosequin products are normally the #1 vet-recommended nutritional supplement. Thus, users are guaranteed to receive notable improvements in their dog’s joint condition within the first 6 weeks after administration.


Since there is more than one formulation under the Cosequin product label, it is advisable to consult with your veterinarian on the most suitable dosage for your dog. Generally, each Cosequin capsule contains 400 mg of Sodium chondroitin sulfate, 5mg of manganese, and 500mg of glucosamine hydrochloride. Vets typically recommend that dog owners begin with an “initial” Cosequin dose within the first 4-6 weeks and continue with the same recommended dosage to achieve optimum results. On the other hand, for Cosequin chewable table, veterinarians recommend an initial “loading dose” within 4-6 weeks to allow the supplement to function effectively. Afterward, follow the following guidelines on long-term dosage recommendations for:

  • Small dogs – administer half a tablet per day and the other half for the following day.
  • Medium dogs – administer 1 tablet per day and half a tablet daily as maintenance.
  • Large dogs – administer 2 tablets daily, then 1 tablet daily as maintenance.
  • Giant dogs – administer 3 tablets daily, and maintain between 102 tablets per day.

Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructors on the package, and regularly make visits with your local vet to get an up-to-date weight for your dog and receive the proper dosage instructions.

Is Cosequin Right for Your Dog?

Generally, Cosequin is the most suitable option for dogs dealing with painful joints as a result of cruciate disease, osteoarthritis, elbow dysplasia, or hip dysplasia. Cosequin can also be used as a complementary treatment for dogs taking anti-inflammatory or pain-relieving medication. Some of the signs that may indicate your dog needs Cosequin include; not wanting to walk for long distances, swelling around the joints, limping, not wanting to jump into the car or use the stairs, stiffness/ difficulty when rising, and general stiffness. If you notice your dog showing any of these symptoms, make sure you visit your vet for professional help. The vet will first examine your dog to determine the leading cause of the problem and then come up with several treatment solutions and suitable nutritional supplements for your dog. If you want to administer your dog with a supplement before the signs of joint problems appear, then you should consider Cosequin. This is because Cosequin will help slow the development of the joint infection. Moreover, Cosequin is the #1 supplementary option used in large dog breeds that are vulnerable to some joint diseases, such as elbow or hip dysplasia.


Glucosamine, an ingredient contained in Cosequin products, is a mild anti-inflammatory that helps prevent further breakdown of cartilage and promote the production of cartilage. Sodium chondroitin sulfate, also included in Cosequin products, helps slow down the destruction of cartilage, promote water retention, and maintain elasticity in the cartilage. Cosequin products also contain Methylsulfonylmethane, which works as a natural pain reliever and anti-inflammatory. Resultant effects from the use of Cosequin are evident within the first few days, but satisfactory effects are usually apparent between the first 4-6 weeks after administration. You can also decide to consult with your veterinarian if you feel the desired results have not been achieved. A supplement Cosequin dosage may be recommended or reduced to a maintenance dosage.

Side Effects of Cosequin

According to the manufacturer, Nutramax Labs, Cosequin is a very safe product that has not received any reports of negative side effects. It is also advisable to consult with your vet before administering any Cosequin product to your dog, especially if they are taking other supplements, medications, or have any pre-existing health conditions. There are some instances where Cosequin may lead to mild diarrhea or vomiting, particularly in Cosequin DS Plus MSM and Minis formulations that contain Methylsulfonylmethane. Though very rare, some of the common side effects that may occur include:

  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Worsening allergy symptoms (if present)
  • Itching

Nonetheless, it is important to visit your vet before exposing your dog to any type of natural or supplement therapy.

Allergic Reactions and Sensitivity

Although very rare, Cosequin products can lead to adverse or allergic reactions. Dogs that are on low potassium diets and have diabetes mellitus should be administered Cosequin with some caution. Additionally, closely monitoring is essential to dogs dealing with asthma and blood sugar problems if given Cosequin. Administering Cosequin products to breastfeeding or pregnant animals has yet to be studied. Thus, the resulting effects are unknown.

How Long Will It Take for Cosequin to Work?

Once you put your dog on Cosequin, it is advisable to start with an initial course of treatment, known as a ‘loading dose.’ The effects are usually evident within the first 4-6 weeks after administration. However, if you don’t notice any improvement in your dog’s mobility or comfort within 8 weeks, you are advised to consult your vet. You will receive professional help and further treatment solutions.

Where to Buy Cosequin

The most suitable way to buy Cosequin for Dog supplement is directly from your veterinarian or through the official Cosequin website. You can also decide to buy it online from trustworthy pharmacies that are accredited by a reputable authorizing body such as the Food and Administration in the USA and the Veterinary Medicines Directorate in the UK. However, you are advised to take caution when purchasing the Cosequin products sold online, as using false Cosequin products will harm your pet and produce poor or no results.

How do you know if your dog has osteoarthritis?

Your dog may have osteoarthritis if they appear sore when touched, lose their appetite, show aggression, vocalize pain, limp, and many other signs.

How do you spot joint pain in your dog?

Your dog may have joint pain if you notice they find it difficult upon rising, have swollen joints, and frequently lick the affected joint. You may also notice some abnormal behavioral changes like reluctance to play, not wanting to walk for long distances or moodiness.

Do you need a prescription for Cosequin?

Although there are various places where you can decide to buy your Cosequin supplement, you are advised first to contact your vet, who will help determine if Cosequin is the best treatment option for your dog.

What happens if your dog misses a Cosequin dose?

If you happen to forget to give your dog their Cosequin dose and it is near the time for the next dose, you should skip the dose instead of doubling up.


As a pet owner, it is your duty to ensure your pet is living a quality life by maintaining comfort and easing their pain. This is especially true if they are old and have arthritis or are having trouble with their movements. Nutritional supplements like Cosequin are the ideal tool required to relieve your dog’s pain and make them happier, whether you use them alone or with other medications. As you have seen, Cosequin for dogs is not only a safe supplement, but it also comes with several benefits that help improve the overall health and wellbeing of your dog.

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