What is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide (NMN) for Dogs?

Nicotinamide Mononucleotide NMN for Dogs What You Need to Know

Nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs (or NMN) is a nucleotide (nucleic acid building block) made from several B3 vitamins (nicotinamide, niacin, nicotinaminde riboside) and ribose, a sugar. NMN is a vital precursor to NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide).

NAD is a coenzyme present in living cells and responsible for a wide range of biological processes. Coenzymes are non-protein compounds that bind to an enzyme and help a chemical reaction occur more quickly. 

Interestingly, aging is marked by decreased NAD+ levels. Therefore, supplementation with NAD+ precursors like NMN may slow down aging, improve health, and increase lifespan in dogs.

How is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide for Dogs Sourced?

Nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs is sourced from nicotinamide through enzymatic synthesis. First, nicotinamide is transformed into nicotinamide riboside (NR). Then nicotinamide riboside is transformed into β-NMN. 

In the first stage, nicotinamide is mixed with nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase, ribose, and water. In the second stage, NR is mixed with adenosine triphosphate and nicotinamide riboside kinase. This sourcing process is natural and perfectly safe for dogs.

In the body, NMM is synthesized from B vitamins (with the help of an enzyme called nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase). Also, NMN is abundantly present in fruits and vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, avocados, cucumbers, and edamame.

Is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide FDA Approved?

No, NMN is not FDA approved. In the USA, NMN is sold under the statute of the Dietary Supplement and Education Act (DSHEA) as a nutritional supplement.

FirstVet
  • Single consults and 24/7 calls and visits
  • Expert vet care at an affordable price
  • Discounts on long-term subscriptions
  • Free access to educational articles & blogs
  • $5 off a single consultation

Is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide Safe for Dogs?

Yes, nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs is safe. According to Dr. Peter Dobias, an EU-certified DVM with over 30 years of experience, NMN supplementation is “safe and well-tolerated by dogs.“

Also, the safety of NMN was reported in a 2020 Frontiers in Pharmacology publication, “Subacute Toxicity Study of Nicotinamide Mononucleotide via Oral Administration,“ by Y. You, Y. Gao, H. Wang, J. Li, X. Zhang, Z. Zhu, and N. Liu. The study demonstrated the safety of NMN and provided a “dose range for oral administration.”

Can Nicotinamide Mononucleotide be Toxic to Dogs?

No, based on current knowledge, nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs is not toxic. However, high doses of NMN may cause a slight increase in creatinine and uric acid levels. 

Increased creatinine levels indicate an impact on kidney function, but this impact is mild. NMN has no reported effect on liver function.

How does Nicotinamide Mononucleotide Work for Dogs?

Nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs works by stimulating NAD+ biosynthesis and increasing sirtuin enzymes (a group of seven proteins critical for aging and DNA expression). Following oral administration, NMN promotes NAD+ synthesis and increases NAD+ levels.

As a result, NMN supplementation could help slow the development of  various age-related diseases. This could be very beneficial, given that advances in veterinary medical care have helped to increase dogs’ lifespans.

What is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide Used for in Dogs?

Nicotinamide Mononucleotide NMN for Dogs What You Need to Know

Nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs can be used for several health issues. While most of the expected uses are drawn from studies in lab animals, we believe the working mechanisms would be similar in dogs.

Here is a closer look at some of the uses of NMN in dogs.

NMN for Heart Disease in Dogs: A 2017 study, “Short-term administration of Nicotinamide Mononucleotide preserves cardiac mitochondrial homeostasis and prevents heart failure,“ showed that impaired mitochondrial function is a key aspect of heart disease. It also demonstrated the potential positive effect of NMN in supporting mitochondrial function and heart health in mice

NMN for Vascular Health in Dogs: A 2016 study published in Aging Cell title “Nicotinamide mononucleotide supplementation reverses vascular dysfunction and oxidative stress with aging in mice,” demonstrated that NMN can help promote vascular health.

Additionally, in the 2020 paper “Subacute Toxicity Study of Nicotinamide Mononucleotide via Oral Administration,“ it was reported that animals supplemented with NMN had lower blood lipid levels,including total cholesterol and triglycerides, which positively affects vascular health.

NMN for Diabetes in Dogs: In a 2012 study in mice, “Nicotinamide mononucleotide, a key NAD+ intermediate, treats the pathophysiology of diet- and age-induced diabetes in mice,“ it was shown that NMN supplementation improves insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance, thus helping with age and diet-related type 2 diabetes.

NMN for Dog Dementia: NMN’s reported ability to improve mitochondrial function and  combat oxidative stress (by acting as an antioxidant) suggests that NMN could be considered as a treatment option  for dogs with dementia. In a 2017 study, “Nicotinamide mononucleotide inhibits JNK activation to reverse Alzheimer disease,“ NMN demonstrated several positive effects in mice, including improving cognition and reducing the burden of amyloid plaques. .

Can Nicotinamide Mononucleotide Slow Down Aging in Dogs?

Yes, nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs may help slow down aging.

In a 2016 study by Imai S, “The NAD World 2.0: the importance of the inter-tissue communication mediated by NAMPT/ NAD+/SIRT1 in mammalian aging and longevity control,” aging is described as a “cascade of robustness breakdown triggered by a decrease in systemic NAD+ biosynthesis.”

The decrease in NAD+ levels with age has also been demonstrated in a clinical study from 2018, “Therapeutic Potential of NAD-Boosting Molecules: The In Vivo Evidence“ by L. Rajman, K. Chwalek, and D. A. Sinclair.

Since NMN acts as an intermediate in the biosynthesis of NAD+ and promotes increased NAD+ levels, it is reasonable to suggest that it could help slow down aging.

What are the Benefits of Nicotinamide Mononucleotide (NMN) for Dogs?

Nicotinamide Mononucleotide NMN for Dogs What You Need to Know

From boosted brain health to decreased pain and better sleep, the beneficial effects of NMN are many. Most of the information about those benefits comes from anecdotal evidence and studies on humans or laboratory animals.

NMN could have these same benefits  in other mammals, including dogs, but more research is needed to demonstrate this. Here are some of the benefits we can expect from NMN in dogs.

Can Improve Cognitive Function in Dogs: A 2020 study in mice, “Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) supplementation promotes neurovascular rejuvenation in aged mice: transcriptional footprint of SIRT1 activation, mitochondrial protection, anti-inflammatory, and anti-apoptotic effects,“ showed that NMN increases blood flow to the brain, which in turn results in better brain function.

Can Improve Muscle Mass in Dogs: A 2016 study in mice, “Loss of NAD Homeostasis Leads to Progressive and Reversible Degeneration of Skeletal Muscle“ demonstrated the beneficial effect of NMN for muscle function, strength, and endurance.

May Help Decrease Pain in Dogs: A mouse study from 2021, “Nicotinamide Mononucleotide Alleviates LPS-Induced Inflammation and Oxidative Stress via Decreasing COX-2 Expression in Macrophages, “ showed that NMN alleviates inflammation, specifically chronic inflammation.

Can Improve Sleep in Dogs: In a 2022 Japanese human study, “Effect of 12-Week Intake of Nicotinamide Mononucleotide on Sleep Quality, Fatigue, and Physical Performance in Older Japanese Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study, “ it was shown that NMN has a positive effect on sleep. Dr. Peter Dobias came to the same conclusion in his study and said dogs supplemented with NMN “slept deeper/better or had a more restful sleep.”

Can Increase Mobility in Dogs: The NMN-induced decrease in pain can have another potential benefit – improved mobility. Dr. Peter Dobias agrees and confirms that “a number of dogs showed positive changes in mobility over the course of the trial.”

Can Increase Energy in Dogs: Less pain and deeper sleep result in increased energy. The Japanese study that found that NMN has a positive impact on sleep also established a link between NMN and better physical performance. Also, Dr. Peter Dobias says that during the clinical trial, supplemented dogs were “more engaged“ and in a “better mood.“

Can Improve the Quality of Life of Aging and Senior Dogs: The overall beneficial effects of NMN can result in an improved quality of life in seniors. NMN supplementation also promotes longevity. In a 2022 ScienceDirect study in mice called “Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) as an anti-aging health product – Promises and safety concerns,” the supplement prolonged the lifespan of mice by around 29%.

How Much Nicotinamide Mononucleotide Should I Give My Dog?

Nicotinamide Mononucleotide NMN for Dogs What You Need to Know

According to Dr. Peter Dobias, dogs under 60 lbs, need 250 mg of NMN. However, if your dog’s body weight is over 60 lbs, you should give 500 mg.

However, before supplementing your dog with NMN, talk to your vet. Your veterinarian will give information on the exact dosage and additional usage instructions.

Short-term use of high NMN doses is not concerning. But in the long run, correct dosing and usage are essential.

How Often Should I Give Nicotinamide Mononucleotide to Dogs?

According to Dr. Peter Dobias, NMN should be given once every three days after the age of three. Once the dog is five years old, NMN supplements can be given every day.

What are the Side Effects of Nicotinamide Mononucleotide on Dogs?

Nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs may cause side effects such as vomiting, diarrhea, licking or scratching, ear wax build-up, and eye discharge.

Fortunately, these side effects are fairly tolerable. Namely, they are cleansing reactions and signs of detoxification. In other words, they show that the body’s defense systems are active and regaining strength.

Do Vets Recommend Nicotinamide Mononucleotide for Dogs?

Yes, veterinarians generally recommend nicotinamide mononucleotide for dogs.

They also advise responsible use. Dr. JoAnna Pendergrass says, “Talk to your veterinarian if your dog is unable to tolerate NMN. Your veterinarian may need to lower the dosage or frequency of administration to minimize the side effects.” 

However, every dog is different, and your vet will evaluate your dog’s overall health before suggesting NMN supplementation. Also, we should note that dogs may react differently to NMN, and some of the expected benefits and effects of NMN are derived from human studies. 

Dr. Peter Dobias says,”Based on research conducted in humans and dogs, NMN appears to be very promising in the prevention and treatment of common diseases in dogs such as heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, pancreatitis, diabetes, and digestive disorders. Based on the results of a clinical study I have conducted in 23 dogs, I recommend NMN as a viable option to promote cell and organ repair and slow the aging process of middle-aged and senior dogs.”

author avatar
Ivana Crnec, DVM