Eight Ingredients That Are Good For Dog Arthritis And Joint Pain

As dogs age, many experience joint issues, which can make it more difficult to move around and enjoy life to the fullest. Thanks to today’s veterinary medicine and products made specifically for dogs who struggle with joint inflammation, there are many ways to help ease the pain and side effects of arthritis in senior dogs -- including special dog food. 

But before buying a food labeled as being for dogs with joint pain, be sure to look at the ingredients listed on the package. Fillers, such as grain by-products, can be harmful and may lead to more inflammation. Always look for products with whole grains. Additionally, many dogs experiencing arthritis are overweight, so it’s critical to buy food that is healthy and nutritious -- not the equivalent of human fast food. To learn more about reading and understanding dog food packaging and ingredient lists, check out our blog “How To Read A Dog Food Label.”

Whether you’re looking to make food at home with ingredients that will help your dog’s arthritis or hoping to make more educated decisions on buying healthy dog food for your senior dog, here are eight ingredients to prioritize. 

Ingredients that are good for dog arthritis
  1. Yams 

Yams are high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients that help with arthritis. Look for dog foods that list yams or sweet potatoes as a top ingredient, or boil one at home and serve fresh -- just be sure to leave out any of the seasoning and oils that you’d use to cook one for yourself! 

  1. Salmon

Salmon is a strong source of omega-3 fatty acids, which reduce inflammation and ease joint pain -- among many other benefits. Learn more about giving dogs fish in our blog, “Is Fish Good For Dogs?”

  1. Cranberries 

Cranberries are rich in vitamins, including vitamin A, B1, B2, and C. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that has been shown to ease the symptoms of arthritis in dogs. 

  1. Carrots 

Carrots are an antioxidant-rich vegetable and also contain vitamin A, which promotes healthy nerve function. Also, feeding your dog raw carrots can help with bad breath! Read more about preventing bad breath in dogs in our blog, “Foods That Help Maintain Good Dog Breath.”

  1. Red delicious apples 

Red delicious apples are high in antioxidants and fiber! Just be sure that your dog doesn’t get any of the seeds, as they are toxic for dogs.  

  1. Sea salt 

Sea salt contains numerous minerals and has been shown to aid in alleviating arthritis pain in dogs, but should only be used in very small amounts. 

  1. Quinoa 

Quinoa contains powerful antioxidants, which naturally helps with chronic inflammation. A gluten-free alternative to grains, quinoa is great for dogs with allergies and sensitive stomachs! 

  1. Kale 

Kale is a good source of magnesium and antioxidants. It also protects dogs against bacteria and viruses! 


Arthritis can be painful and uncomfortable for dogs, so be sure to visit your veterinarian if you believe your dog is experiencing symptoms. However, it’s never too late to start giving your dog foods that help with inflammation! 

At Portland Pet Food Company, all of our ingredients serve a purpose. Our recipes were originally written for founder Katie McCarron’s senior dog, Rosie, so you will find that many of our meal mixers contain ingredients that are naturally rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that are beneficial to dogs experiencing joint problems. Not sure where to start? We’d recommend Wally’s Salmon N’ Rice or Grandma Ada’s Turkey & Yams as a standalone rotational meal or kibble mixer!