“ Manufacturer: Intervet / Type: Cat Health „
A couple of years ago one of my boys (cats) developed a limp. The vet checked the leg in question and said it was arthritis and to try to give him some glucosamine. I tried to give him some human glucosamine in a lower dose but frankly he wouldn't touch anything I put it into and it was too large a tablet to go directly down his throat. I also tried to give him cod liver oil which he didn't like either. Then I tried Omega oils which again he wouldn't touch and finally had to accept some anti-inflammatory medication from the vet to use on his worst days.
We've used this medication as infrequently as possible for the last couple of years along with keeping him warm and the softest beds possible and it's worked to a degree but not well enough for my liking. Firstly it meant in order to give it he had to be limping which meant he was already in pain and secondly cats are very sensitive to anti-inflammatories so I worried about the effects it would have on him. Recently I started looking at glucosamine again and this is when I found Cosequin.
I mentioned Cosequin to my vet and she suggested a different product which does apprently have good results but again my boy wouldn't eat anything it was in so that was a disaster. The Cosequin however appealed to me because it is chicken and tuna flavour which is very cat friendly. Following my initial instinct I got looking for some online and found it is about £30 for 90 capsules. At the moment www.vetuk.co.uk have it on offer for £22.53 so that's the best place to buy it right now. It sounds very expensive but it's about £10 a month on full price as 90 capsules will last one cat at least 3 months so it's not really expensive at all.
The Cosequin comes in a plastic bottle with a standard paper seal and the capsules themselves look just like ordinary capsules we take. These capsules are not designed to be swallowed whole though, you open the capsule up and sprinkle the white flavoured powder into food. It is still quite alot of powder to mix in but it can be done if you choose something fairly wet.
The inital instructions are to give 1 capsule a day in 2 doses for the first 6 weeks then to reduce by half a day for a month to see if that's enough to maintain the joints on, and reduce further by half capsules each month until you reach the lowest dose it takes for your cat to maintain supported joints. If you have a light cat under 5kg the inital dose is half a capsule only once a day. I've seen reviews from cat owners who have managed to get down to half a capsule every other day and the cat's joints have been fine but I suspect we will be on half a capsule daily with how bad my boy's limp was. The thing to remember here is Cosequin isn't dangerous like anti-inflammatories can be it's just recommended you use the lowest dose possible of anything with animals. We're still in the inital 6 week period so whatever dose we end up using will be fine with me.
Cosequin contains glucosamine, chondroitin and manganese. I doubt there's anyone who hasn't heard of the benefits of glucosamine and chondroitin and how they repair cartilage to protect the joints but I bet alot of people don't know what manganese is for. I can tell you it's for strengthening ligaments so that should cover all angles at the joints in an arthritic patient.
So the goods have arrived and now it's a case of will he eat it? I can tell you he was a bit dubious at first and even though I mixed it into tuna (his absolute favourite) he wasn't convinced. I tried it in sardines in tomato sauce because I figured they were strong enough to cover the taste if he didn't like it and eventually he decided to give it a go. It obviously doesn't smell of the flavour it's supposed to be because once he starts eating it there's no problems but it's actually getting him to eat it in the first place!
Since we started the Cosequin he's got so he will eat food spiked with it with a little encouragement and minimal fuss so he's got used to it being there twice a day. We're 3 weeks down the road with this and the difference is amazing. His limp reduced within a week and he seemed alot more comfortable in himself then after a couple of weeks his limp was gone. That's more effective, although slower, than the anti-inflammatories he was given. It's amazing to see him tackle jumps he had accepted were too high for him and rush about outside in the garden. Occasionally he'll get carried away and jump down from somewhere too high which will leave him with the slightest hint of a limp but this is to be expected, arthritis doesn't go away it just has to be managed.
He's so much happier without the limping and obvious pain and it's like we've taken several years off his age and gone back to the days before the limp. I'm absolutely thrilled with how good this is and it's worth every penny to see my boy jumping and running again.
On a downside though I did try this with my other lad who's alot more sensitive to medication and it made him sick on both occasions I gave him some so, like us, there are going to be some cats that can't take this supplement. Side effects are very rare though and the most you can expect to happen is a slight runny tummy for a few days while they adjust but my other lad didn't even get that.
Overall I'm thrilled, it's very effective and quite easy to administer even for my picky boy! It works well and is readily available to buy online. I absolutely, thoroughly recommend anyone with a cat with arthritis gives this a go and for those of you with dogs they do a dog version too which I'm told is just as good! Thoroughly recommended by me and one of my boys!