Pet Health: Pets and Turmeric

The Benefits of Turmeric in Veterinary Medicine

It’s difficult to see our sweet old pets begin struggling with common senior ailments and not have a prevention plan or natural aide to help them. How many times have you asked your veterinarian if there is any supplement or multivitamin you can start your geriatric dog or cat on? It is so important to prevent pain from happening, but also finding a natural source of pain management is equally as important, as long-term use of certain pain medications can cause a toll on the liver and kidneys. One of the most common ailments that senior dogs and cats suffer from is osteoarthritis (arthritis). In this case, all we can do is manage the symptoms with pain medication – as we do in human medicine.


I am happy to report that there is vast amount of research on the benefits of turmeric in our senior dogs and cats that I am excited to share with you all. Turmeric, if you are unaware, is a flowering plant, Curcuma longa, and of the ginger family. It is a spice used in cooking and considered one of the key ingredients in curry powder. Turmeric, as an anti-inflammatory agent has been used immensely in India, and recently we are finding research of its benefit here in the United States. Research shows, that when comparing anti-inflammatory pain relievers (such as ibuprofen) with turmeric, there has been a better response to pain relief with the use of turmeric – if used correctly.

The active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin, which is a natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. The mechanism of action is by regulating the inflammatory signal pathways and essentially inhibiting the production of inflammatory mediators. Curcumin is also the ingredient that gives turmeric its bright yellow color. When taken as a daily supplement, it is useful for prevention and management of pain and inflammation. Recently, turmeric has been used in conjunction with other pain relievers to help manage pain associated with arthritis, joint disease, hip dysplasia, and disc disease.

If you have a senior dog struggling with these ailments or other types of chronic pain, please reach out to a veterinarian at PetMyPal to discuss the possible addition of turmeric supplementation and the appropriate dosing for your pet. Regardless of turmeric being a safe and natural anti-inflammatory, never begin a new supplement for your pet without first discussing with your veterinarian.


The purpose behind this blog is to educate you on your pet’s health and is not intended to help you treat the pet on your own. As the causes of what is ailing your pet could vary and your pet could be experiencing severe distress, we strongly recommend you reach out to a vet either through telehealth or by going to a vet clinic to help your pet get back to good health.

Reach out and chat with one of our licensed Vets on PetMyPal’s Vet Chat. It is affordable, easy to use and above all you will have peace of mind that your pet will be taken care of.  Happy pet parenting!

Dr. Ambika Vaid, DVM
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