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Green lipped mussels for alleviating arthritis in dogs.

Bui LM, Bierer TL.

Waltham USA, 3250 E 44th Street, Vernon, CA 90058, USA.

This study evaluated the efficacy of green lipped mussel (GLM), added to a complete dry diet, for alleviating clinical signs of arthritis in dogs. A double-blind longitudinal study design was used with 31 mixed-breed dogs exhibiting varying degrees of arthritis. Each dog was evaluated by a veterinarian and joints were individually scored for degree of pain, swelling, crepitus, and reduction in range of movement. Summation of all scores for an individual dog comprised its total arthritis score. At baseline, dogs were randomly allocated to control and test groups. Both groups were fed the same base dry diet, to which 0.3% GLM powder was added for dogs in the test group. The change in total arthritis score by the end of 6 weeks showed there was significant improvement (P <.05) in the test group versus the control group. Significant improvements were also observed in joint pain and swelling scores in the test group. Changes in joint crepitus and range of joint movement were not significantly different between the test and control groups. These findings provide strong evidence that GLM incorporated into a complete dry diet can help alleviate arthritis symptoms in dogs.

PMID: 15136981 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


Green-lipped mussel (Perna canaliculus) is a New Zealand shellfish, from which an extract has been shown to be useful in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis  and osteoarthritis .

Green-lipped mussel inhibits inflammation in the body. Although inflammation is normal under certain conditions, consistent  inflammation can result in pain  and damage to the body, including the joints.

Green-lipped mussels are found in the oceans off New Zealand. In supplement form, green-lipped mussel is available as a lipid extract or a freeze-dried powder. Green lipped mussel extract is also combined with other arthritis treatments. When you buy a product containing green lipped mussel, it comes in two forms one which is stabilized with a preservative and the other is not. Recent animal studies have compared the two forms and found a stabilized lipid extract to be significantly more effective than a non-stabilized extract at decreasing inflammation. Because both forms are currently available on PON owners need to read the label carefully to choose the stabilized form.


Further information on arthritis :

  • Administration of green lipped mussel extract significantly improved pain and swelling in dogs with clinical signs of arthritis after a six week intervention.4
  • Elk velvet antler significantly improved gait, daily life activities and vitality in dogs with OA.5
  • In a study involving 50 large-breed 7- to 12-year-old dogs with OA, those given milk protein concentrate (as MicroLactin®, from Humanetics) for eight weeks found 68 percent of animals showed improvements in orthopedic conditions.6
  • Boswellia has been found to improve clinical signs of arthritis in dogs in a dose of 400 mg/10 kg/d.7
  • The botanical extract turmeric has been shown to significantly impact joint pain and lameness, as assessed by pet owners.8



1. Henrotin Y et al. "Pharmaceutical and nutraceutical management of canine osteoarthritis: present and future perspectives." Vet J. 170, 1:113-23, 2005.

2. Deparle LA et al. "Efficacy and safety of glycosylated undenatured type-II collagen (UC-II) in therapy of arthritic dogs." J Vet Pharmacol Ther. 28, 4:385-90, 2005.

3. D’Altilio M et al. "Safety and Therapeutic Efficacy of Denatured Type II Collagen Alone, and in Combination with Glucosamine and Chondroitin in Arthritic Dogs." 45th Annual Meeting of the Society of Toxicology, San Diego, CA, Volume 90:1, Abs 1682, Pg 344, March 2006.

4. Bui LM et al. "Influence of green lipped mussels (Perna canaliculus) in alleviating signs of arthritis in dogs." Vet Ther. 4, 4:397-407, 2003.

5. Moreau M et al. "Clinical e