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Home > Dogs > Green Lipped Mussels for Dogs: Vet-Reviewed Facts & FAQ

Green Lipped Mussels for Dogs: Vet-Reviewed Facts & FAQ

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Lauren Demos

Veterinarian, DVM

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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You may have never heard of green-lipped mussels (GLMs), but these particular shellfish are nutrient-rich mollusks that have many health benefits. They are great for humans, but what about dogs? Are GLMs healthy for dogs?

Yes, and they can even assist in joint pain alleviation. These mollusks have a lengthy history of supporting human joints, and according to experts, dogs may also benefit from the same characteristics. Let’s look closer at how GLMs can help your furry friend and how to give them safely.


What Are Green-Lipped Mussels?

Green-lipped mussels get their name from the vivid green stripe that runs around the shell’s edge. Due to their role as a natural seawater filter, they take in a lot of nutrients and minerals. Despite being quite small, these powerful mussels provide enormous health advantages.

The Maori, a native population of New Zealand’s main island, has long consumed the region’s green-lipped mussels. According to reports, arthritis is extremely uncommon among Maoris who regularly consume mussels and live near the coast. For Maoris living inland and not eating mussels, this is not true. Though retrospective studies have shown mixed results, there are still many recommendations for the benefits of GLMs.

Hand holding freshly cooked New Zealand green-lipped mussel
Image Credit: Dmitry Naumov, Shutterstock

How Are Green-Lipped Mussels Given?

The most common method is to give your dog green-lipped mussel supplements. The suggested dosage for a supplement containing green-lipped mussels will be printed on the packaging. If you’re unsure how much to offer your pet, don’t hesitate to speak with your veterinarian.

What Happens If You Miss a Dose?

Even though GLM use in dogs doesn’t need a prescription, it’s still important to review any supplements with your veterinarian before giving them. The safety of using these mussels in pregnant, breeding, or lactating canines has not been proven. If your dog is on GLM supplements and misses a dose, there is no problem. Simply continue with the normal dose the next day—do not try to double a dose because you missed one.

Potential Side Effects of Green-Lipped Mussels

Adding green-lipped mussels to your dog’s diet can be very helpful, but only in the proper quantities. Because they contain a lot of nutrients, giving pups too much of these mussels may result in digestive issues. You should also monitor your dog to see whether they may be allergic to shellfish—while rare, this is still a possibility.

woman feeding a white dog from her palm
Image Credit: Anna Tarazevich, Pexels


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What Are the Benefits of Green-Lipped Mussels for Dogs?

Green-lipped mussels include a variety of nutrients with possible health benefits for your dog.

  • Supports Joint Repair
    Glycosaminoglycans in green-lipped mussels can support the maintenance of healthy joints.
    These mussels also contain vitamins, minerals, and some of them have antioxidant characteristics. Antioxidants can aid in the prevention or reduction of several forms of cell damage in the body. Vitamins C and E, magnesium, zinc, selenium, and copper are a few of these nutrients.
  • Anti-inflammatory
    Omega-3 fatty acids, such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), are abundant in green-lipped mussels. Omega-3 fatty acids are widely known for their capacity to reduce inflammation.

Are Green-Lipped Mussels Better Than Glucosamine for Dogs?

Compared to joint supplements or glucosamine supplements for canines that contain glucosamine and 100% active components, green-lipped mussels for dogs only offer a small amount of active glucosamine. So with joint and mobility difficulties, some supplement companies suggest that glucosamine supplements are preferable.



Green-lipped mussels can be a great addition to your dog’s diet once ok’d by their veterinarian. These mussels are typically given in the form of a powdered supplement and simply added to your dog’s regular meal. They have been shown to aid in joint health and assist dogs with mobility issues. Plus, there are little-to-no side effects to be concerned about.

Featured Image Credit: Anirut Krisanakul, Shutterstock

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