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Can dogs eat mussels? Well, know the green lipped mussel dog treats dosage levels.

Archie eating Green lipped mussel dog treats

Archie eating Green lipped mussel dog treats This research for this article has been made a great deal harder to write since pharmaceutical and dog supplement companies only like to provide information on dosage levels for powdered versions of Green Lipped mussels.

The reason is that whole green lipped mussels might be considered as a commodity to these commercial companies and they live by fear that their profits might be diminished if you actually bought the whole food product. THIS is why most green lipped mussel supplements in the dog world are in POWDER form either loose or by capsule. Every capsule your dog eats has a large marketing and branding overhead attached to it.

The ‘extraction’ methods vary, however they mostly seem to include some quick drying method (no high heat sources) and that’s it. They will all tell you that their methods are the best at preserving the vital ingredients in the GLM, but they are very sketchy on precise details and what labs do the testing on their powders.

 At Healthy dog treats we live in a world where we know dogs are underfed meat proteins and all of the other great micro nutrients associated with meat, that a carnivore dogs digestion was evolved to extract.


So it makes perfect sense to us to serve our clients and their dogs the most whole forms of meat dried dog treats that we can.  And in the case of treats that double as medicinal supplements there is no exception.  The more you process any meat product, the more likely it is to need special care and preservatives. The more likely it is to have its nutrition damaged.

We can understand with humans its very convenient to pop a few pills but you may find that is opposite for dogs, so instead they ask you to sprinkle a gram or so of powder over their grain based dry dog food.  This is a simple but wasteful solution.

Can dogs eat mussels? Why not feed your dog whole green lipped mussels as a food source and a nutritional supplement? Remember, WHOLE in the dog treat world is almost always the best.

Powdered form green lipped mussel dosage levels

The original dosage levels used by most powdered supplement retailers is the same as found in the 2002 GLM research paper (ref 1):

  • >34 kg = 1000 mg GLM/d 
  • 34–25 kg = 750 mg GLM/d 
  • <25 kg = 450 mg GLM/d 

This these values of daily GLM powder feeing were required for a minimum of six weeks before results were analyzed. NOTE with Omega 3 from fish oil (shark cartilage) it can take 3-4 months before full effect is shown to assist skin allergies.

WHOLE green lipped mussels internet dosage

Curiously there is the similar information floating around the internet for whole dried GLM for DOGS.  But its original source is a mystery. These  recommendations are:

  • <5kg dogs = 3-6g GLM
  • 5- 10 Kg dogs =  5-10g   
  • 10-30kg dogs = 10-20g  
  • Dogs > 30 Kg = 20-40g GLM or more

Let’s see if there is a connection between these two.

“Because the mussel extract is a natural whole food, there’s actually a great deal of flexibility in the amount that can be taken. You’ll find that many manufacturers recommend just one or two 500 mg capsules of green lipped mussel powder a day, but this is, in fact, quite a low dose for an adult HUMAN (it’s more suited to a large dog).  A dosage of at least 2,000 mg of powder is a better starting point, particularly if treating painful arthritis or inflammation.  If you’re taking an oil such as Lyprinol, the recommended dosage is at least four capsules (200 mg) per day.”    REF 2

Raw mussels typically are 80% water.  That means 20% solid material.

IF water was completely extracted from  1g of mussels then there would be 200mg of solid left.

Let’s look at the 2002 study amounts they used and measured results for at 6 weeks,

DOG weight

Powder GLM/d 

RAW GLM equivalent

<25 kg

450 mg

2.25 g

34–25 kg

750 mg


>34 kg

1000 mg


Many of the powder selling companies talk about snap cooling processes that are suppose to preserve the active ingredients at their peak efficiency.  High heat drying tends to destroy most of the value of the essential oils, so that is to be avoided.

Instead, the GLMs we obtain are mostly slow dried.

We have noticed that the ‘whole mussel’ dog feeding guide above,  tends to be anywhere between x10 and x15  the dried mussel (powder) equivalents in the table above.

For instance the for a 25 Kg dog, the powdered amount is 750 mg and the dog guide suggests more like 15g of whole dried GLM.

We suspect that the dog feeding guide might make such a large increase in what is essentially the same product to allow for any reduction in active chemicals because of slow low heat drying instead of snap cooling water extraction. This would allow for any degradation in the active chemicals in the green lipped mussels so that a dog gets the same amount of active ingredients.

How to eat Green lipped mussels dog treats

NOTE, GLMS are whole meat products.  Previous studies have shown that even the aafco guidelines allow for up to 25% by weight of dry dog food replacement by meat, without affecting their mineral and vitamin guidelines.

Of course in the case of green lipped mussels not only are you getting quality organic meat based proteins, but the pain and anti inflammatory chemicals, not to mention the “glue of life” (see our GLM nutrition article).

Example.  My dog is around 20 Kg.  His total dry food equivalent for a medium exercised dog of medium age is over 200g. Even if I feed him the maximum amount of the random internet suggested around  (10-20g)  –  20g would still constitute only 10% of his total food intake.

If my dog had severe arthritis, and I didn’t want to give him cortisone for life,  with all of its bad side effects I would at least consider trailing him for 6-8 weeks on the maximum considered dose level of 20g per day of Green lipped mussels.

Note they say to give the green lipped mussels as part of a dogs food or just before a meal in case your dog has a sensitive stomach. It has nothing to do with the efficacy of the GLM.

If I wanted to push it to the full 25% of his daily food intake (energy equivalent) I could even remove 25% of his dry dog food equivalent  (50g) and add 50g of mussels. Remember this is REAL MEAT dog food, not grain or vegetables, and there are no known negative side effects to a dog eating green lipped mussels unless they are allergic to shell fish, which is relatively rare.

Green lipped mussels dog treats – How long will my KG bag last

If you wanted to push your feeding of GLM to the random upper limit of 20g per day (for a 20 Kg dog), that would be approximately 10 of the 2 g GLM’s we currently sell.  NOTE as suppliers change their raw sources, so can the mussel sizes change. 

But for a 2g GLM, a kilo bag of GLM’s will contain approximately 400-500 of these mussels and will last approximately 50 days at that rate for a medium (20Kg) sized dog.

After the six week period if arthritis relief has been achieved you may be able to reduce the daily intake back to lower amount, but of course adjust your level to what works best for your dog.

It  should go without saying, but every site has the disclaimer on it about consulting your vet before giving your dog any medication. However if you are using something that is a NATURAL food, this should not be a major issue for most owners. NOTE we don’t suggest replacing a vet prescribed cortisone treatment as an anti inflammatory, but we do consider that you and them could at least consider using the much more natural method of GLM assisted relief.


REF  1   Improvement of Arthritic Signs in Dogs Fed Green-Lipped Mussel (Perna canaliculus)1Tiffany Linn Bierer3 and Linh M. Bui   2002



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