Cosequin Vs. Dasuquin For Dogs in 2021

By Ann Collins / August 9, 2021

Both Dasuquin and Cosequin are joint supplements from the company called Nutramax Labs. They’re similar products that contain chondroitin and glucosamine among several other ingredients.

There are some differences between the two which is why one is more expensive than others, but they’re both equally as effective. Dasuquin contains ASU that’s believed to protect against cartilage damage which is one of the significant differences between these two supplements.

dark senior dog Both supplements relieve arthritis and joint pain while they can also help with hip dysplasia. Plus, they come in the form of chewable tablets which are much easier to give to your dog.

It can sometimes be a bit tricky to choose between the two because they’re quite similar. However, once you learn about all the info, benefits and side effects included, you can make an easy decision.

Below, you’ll find all the critical info that can help you choose between Cosequin and Dasuquin; the two leading products that help with joint-related issues.

What is Dasuquin?

Dasuquin is a joint supplement that’s recommended to larger and older dogs that are at the risk of developing some joint-related issues. It’s considered safe for most dogs, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask your vet whether or not you should give it to your canine.

close-up of old dogIt’s made by Nutramax Labs and was advertised as the new breed of joint health supplements. While there are many similar products, this one appears to be the only with such a unique combo of active ingredients.

Dasuquin comes in the form of chewable tablets which is ideal for those stubborn pups that don’t like taking vitamins. These are pork liver flavored, so most dogs love and eat them like regular treats. You can mix them with food as well in case your canine still won’t chew them alone.

You don’t need a prescription since it’s an over the counter drug although consultation with your veterinarian is recommended. There’s also the Dasuquin Advanced, but it’s prescription-only since it offers different ingredients and is a bit more suitable for advanced joint issues.

Dasuquin is a joint supplement that also helps with the immune system of your canine. It’s packed with vitamins and different ingredients beneficiary to all breeds and age.


  • Glucosamine hydrochloride
  • Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)
  • Sodium chondroitin sulfate
  • Avocado/soybean unsaponifiables (ASU)
  • Dextrose
  • Dried brewer’s yeast
  • Gum resin
  • Lecithin
  • Magnesium stearate
  • Microcrystalline cellulose
  • Mixed Tocopherols
  • Natural and artificial flavors
  • Silicon dioxide
  • Soy protein isolate
  • Tea

senior dog lying downGlucosamine is an amino sugar that’s used in the production of cartilage. By taking the supplement, dogs get natural resources required to repair and build cartilage.

MSM is an organ sulfur compound which has an anti-inflammatory effect. It helps reduce pain from joint problems such as arthritis.

Chondroitin sulfate is a component of cartilage that provides compressive strength. It has an anti-inflammatory effect and acts as a shock absorbent.

The last of the four primary ingredients is the Avocado and soybean unsaponifiables otherwise known as ASUs. It’s a byproduct of the soap-manufacturing process that features one third avocado oil and two-thirds soybean oil. It’s an ingredient that’s only featured in Dasuquin and isn’t found in Cosequin.

Better with MSM or without?

black senior dog outsideDasuquin comes in two options where you can choose to go with or without one of its primary ingredients called MSM. Methylsulfonylmethane provides joint relief when combined with other components such as ASU, chondroitin sulfate, and glucosamine hydrochloride.

Whether you should go with or without MSM depends on the size of your hound. Both variations are effective and helpful, but this particular supplement is for big canines that weight over 60 pounds. The supplement comes in a soft form you can feed as chewy treats. If not, mix them up with regular food.

What is Cosequin?

Cosequin is a joint-health supplement, much like Dasuquin. It’s manufactured by Nutramax Laboratories since 1992. Since then, the supplement helped treat hip dysplasia, osteoarthritis, and several other joint problems in dogs.

It’s available without a prescription, and you can get it at any pet store as an over-the-counter drug. In most cases, it’s used as an everyday treatment and is safe for most dogs.

brown senior dog laying on couchAs always, it’s recommended you consult with your vet although prescription isn’t required. The product has almost no side effects but disusing it with a veterinarian is always a good idea especially if your pup has severe hip issues.

It’s somewhat cheaper since it doesn’t feature the same ingredients as Dasuquin. Still, it works in the same way by preventing joint damage and helping the formation of new cartilage. It contains all the necessary ingredients, and it’s been around for as long. For this reason, it’s considered safe for most dogs.

Cosequin is still an excellent way to help the general health of your pup. It comes in the form of chewy tablets as well, so you can feed them to your pet with ease.


As we mentioned, Cosequin doesn’t feature the ASU which is probably among the most significant differences that set these two apart. Still, it contains the other three primary ingredients also found in Dasuquin. This is what you can find in Cosequin:

  • Glucosamine hydrochloride
  • Sodium chondroitin sulfate
  • Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)
  • Manganese
  • Dried brewer’s yeast
  • Dextrose
  • Magnesium stearate
  • Microcrystalline cellulose
  • Natural and artificial flavors
  • Silicon dioxide

Benefits of Using Dasuquin or Cosequin Joint Supplement

Joint supplements can be helpful for old hounds especially for large breed. These help improve joint health while also having a few beneficial effects on the immune system.

2 supplement pills for dogsUsing Dasuquin with MSM, you also provide your hound with essential vitamins and nutrients required to maintain a healthy immune system. It delivers A, C, D, E, B12, magnesium, calcium, antioxidants and amino acids.

Both products contain the best combinations of beneficial compounds such as glucosamine, chondroitin, and others. The combos deliver better results in terms of pain relief and cartilage recovery than most commercially produced supplements.

While both deliver somewhat the same results, Dasuquin is still more suitable for large dogs because it contains more of each component. Each package features a dosage guide, so you should consult with that before you proceed to give any to your pup.

Overall, the benefits are generally reduced joint pain, hip issues, and cartilage renewal. Some ingredients have anti-inflammatory effects and can help boost the immune system as well.

Dasuquin is offered for cats as well, so if you have one, it wouldn’t be bad to treat her with the supplement once in a while. Again, consult with your vet and make sure to follow the recommended dosage.

The Difference Between Cosequin and Dasuquin

Although they’re both made by the same company, they have quite a few differences that often help you determine for one of the two. Dasuquin holds one difference over Cosequin that’s usually also the primary reason why people will opt for it.

Avocado/Soybean Unsaponifiables or ASU is only included with Dasuquin and not Cosequin. It helps with mobility and to manage your pup’s pain levels. It’s also the most significant difference between the two since ASU is considered the key ingredient.

pile of white pillsAnother crucial difference is that Dasuquin provides more chondroitin and glucosamine. Because they’re safe, the two active ingredients can be taken in larger doses. For example, Dasuquin features 900mg of glucosamine while there’s only 600mg of it in Cosequin. About 800mg of MSM can be found in Dasuquin while there’s only 250mg in Cosequin

Other, inactive ingredients are featured in the somewhat same quantities.

Manganese is only included with Cosequin, while tea is only included with Dasuquin. It provides general health benefits, but there isn’t any specific evidence in tea helping joint issues. Both products feature dried brewer’s yeast, dextrose, silicon dioxide, and natural and artificial flavors.

Side Effects

As we mentioned, the two products have been around for years. Since the first day, both supplements have helped with pain relief and joint issues of many different breeds and ages. They feature natural ingredients and supplements that help with different joint-related problems.

There aren’t many reports of any negative experiences or side effects from Dasuquin or Cosequin. All the primary ingredients are considered safe; even the ASUs contained in Dasuquin.

If your pup does experience what you believe could be a side effect, you shouldn’t worry. Keep an eye on the animal as the side effects usually go away after a few days.

To avoid any possible complications, it’s advised you start introducing the supplements slowly. This will allow your pup’s body to adjust and adapt to the change gradually. However, if any of the symptoms or side effects continue for longer than a few days, stop with the supplements and take the dog to the vet.


supplements for dogsAs we mentioned, the product is largely considered safe as there aren’t many reports of side effects. However, some of its ingredients might be too much for sensitive stomach, so it’s best to introduce the product slowly.

Follow the dosage chart included with the supplement and pay attention to how your pet behaves. If you spot any changes in behavior or general health, it might just be due to Dasuquin.

The most common side effects are dizziness, loss of appetite and a minor upset stomach. However, all of these will most likely stop after a day or two if they happen at all. In most cases, it’s the ASU that causes an upset stomach since some pups are more sensitive to avocado than others. Still, it’s a natural ingredient that’s unlikely to cause any serious issues.

Inactive ingredients such as yeast and artificial flavors might cause gas and diarrhea at the very beginning. If any of the side effects continue for longer than two days, stop giving them to your dog and consult with a vet.


Since Cosequin is relatively similar to Dasuquin, it’s also considered quite safe for all ages and breeds. It features somewhat the same ingredients although it doesn’t include ASU.

dog supplements on tableStill, pups might experience dizziness, diarrhea, loss of appetite and upset stomach at the very beginning when you first introduce the supplement to them. These happen rarely and should pass in a day or two after the first time you give the product to your pup.

Make sure to start slowly while following the recommended dosage. If any of the side effects continue for longer than two days, you should stop administering the supplement and take your dog to the vet.

If the negative effects don’t appear in those first days, it’s most likely they never will. This means you can continue to give the supplement to your pet for years to come as long as you follow the recommended dosage.

Alternatives to Dasuquin and Cosequin

When it comes to other options, people tend to turn to human supplements although they aren’t the best for your dog. If you do opt for some, make sure to consult with your vet.

In most cases, Cosequin is considered an alternative to Dasuquin since it’s less costly. However, if none of the two are an option for some reason, you can use a few other things.

dog on a walk at parkCadaFlex is another product that has similar ingredients but is about 30% cheaper. NSAIDS is also something you can ask your vet about since it helps treat arthritis with firocoxib, carprofen, and meloxicam.

Infinite Pet Supplies All-Natural supplement has human-grade ingredients. It includes Turmeric and is less expensive than the Nutramax Labs products.

Doggone Best Products has an advanced, more concentrated formula for active dogs. Another suitable option is the Doggie Dailies soft chew joint supplement.

Keep in mind that every dog is different and as such, they might all experience different results. Also, make sure you only opt for alternatives with natural ingredients since those are less likely to cause any serious issues.

Dasuquin and Cosequin are still the best options suitable for both large and small breeds. They’re safe for elderly dogs as well.

Overall are These Supplements Safe?

brown dog walking on white backgroundAs we mentioned, both supplements feature only natural ingredients and as such are perfectly safe for your dog. You should consult with your vet before you start giving them to your pet as an extra step of precaution.

The best thing is that there’s no time limit meaning you can give them to your dog for years to come. Some side effects might appear, but they usually go away in a day or two. After that, the body adjusts, and you can continue with the product as advised.

None of the two products contain any ingredients that could severely damage or upset your pet’s body. They aid the immune system, boost mobility and help joints, and are considered safe for all breeds and age groups.

How Much Dasuquin or Cosequin Can You Give Your Dog?

The recommended dosage depends on the size of your dog. For the first four to six weeks, you can give higher dosages since it’s the introduction stage.

brown dog on white backdropFor Cosequin, the recommended dose is ½ a tablet each day, or every other day for pups weighing less than 15 pounds. If your pet is over 60 pounds, you can give her/him 1 to 3 tablets every day.

The recommended dosage of Dasaquin is 0.5 tablets a day for dogs under 10 pounds, one tablet a day for 10 to 29 pounds, two tablets a day for 30 to 59 pounds and two tablets a day for 60 to 120 pounds.

After four to six weeks, you enter the maintenance level which means you can cut back on the dosage by half.

Can Dogs overdose on Joint supplement?

The recommended dose is what’s enough to intake in order to achieve the desired results. All primary ingredients are natural and considered safe within those recommended limits.

dog laying on couchHowever, if your dog takes more than what’s recommended, he/she might experience gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea and vomiting. In this case, stop with the supplements and simply wait since symptoms will pass in a day or two.

If they continue, you should take your pup to the vet for some baseline blood work. Neither Dasuquin nor Cosequin has any severe side effects that could harm your dog if the overdose happened once by accident.

If you continue to administrate larger-than-recommended doses, your dog will most definitely show signs of gastrointestinal issues or even liver damage.

How Long Does It Take For It to Work?

dog wearing glassesAll dogs are different and might take more or less time to react to the supplement. Plus, larger breeds might take longer than smaller.

Either way, look for any changes in behavior. It usually takes from four to six weeks for both products to work, so allow your pet some time to adjust to the new supplement.

Which one should I get?

husky laying on couchThese are both supplements that help healthy development and recovery of joints. They’re ideal for large breeds and elderly dogs, especially those that are working and constantly running.

They help with pain relief and can even be used as a form of prevention. As we explained, there’s a difference between them, but it’s quite small. For this reason, both are equally effective and recommended.

It’s up to you to decide which one you prefer depending on the size and age of your dog. Think about if your pup would benefit from the added ASU that’s only included with Dasuquin, and make your choice based on that.

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About the author

    Ann Collins

    I've been a college grad for over 4 years now. I'm a full-time contributor for puppypointers and I absolutely love it. I enjoy meeting people from all over the world, especially those that have a warm heart for doggies. When I'm not writing, I spend a lot of time at the beach in sunny California.

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