The use of collagen in Pet Food

Discover how our latest ACTIPRO collagen serves as a  versatile protein that supports joint health, bone strength, and skin and coat health in pets.

What is collagen?

Collagen is a versatile protein that forms the structural part of various tissues. Over the last years it has emerged as an interesting molecule and well-known ingredient in the pet food industry.
This important protein plays – among other functions – a critical role in maintaining and strengthening:

  • the joints
  • the bones
  • the health of cartilages 
  • muscles

Collagen also promotes skin and coat health and supports digestive functions. It’s a fibrous protein found in the extracellular matrix of animals making up a substantial portion of connective tissues. Almost 30% of the proteins in mammals are collagen. It’s composed of amino acids – including glycine, proline and
hydroxyproline – organized in a unique triple-helical polypeptide structure.

This molecular polypeptide helix makes collagen strong and resilient to tensile forces.

What are the benefits of collagen in pet food?

  • Joint health and mobility: Collagen can be a significant help to strengthen bones and joints, helping to develop greater flexibility and resistance. For aging or active pets, collagen supplementation may alleviate discomfort and support overall joint function.
  • Skin and coat health: Collagen plays a crucial role in maintaining the skin’s elasticity and hydration. Including collagen in pet food can make the coat shinier and the skin healthier.
    Additionally, collagen can improve the recovery process from skin irritations or injuries.
  • Digestive health: The amino acids in collagen, particularly glycine, support the health by promoting gut integrity. It has an accelerating effect on metabolism, regulating digestion.
  • Dental health: Collagen prevents common problems such as inflammation and helps keeping teeth strong. Its inclusion in pet food supports better oral hygiene and prevents dental issues.
  • Liver health: The amino acids as glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline present in collagen prevents liver damage and detoxifies and purifies the liver.
  • Heart protection: Collagen can help protection of the striated muscle of the heart of dogs and cats.
featured image Cat and dog

The different types of collagen

There are 5 types of collagen. The most common ones for pet food use are:

  • Type I
    It is the most abundant and widely distributed type in the body. This type of collagen forms a major component of skin, bones, tendons, ligaments and teeth. About 90 % of the proteins in bones is collagen. It supports the joint health, skin and coat condition of pets.


  • Type II
    As it supports cartilage integrity and helps reduce inflammation, it’s particularly beneficial for pets with joint issues or osteoarthritis.


  • Type III
    Its inclusion in pet diets may support skin health, wound healing and the overall maintenance of the cardiovascular system.

Commercial diets in pet food

Pet food manufacturers have recognized the potential benefits of collagen in pet diets and have started incorporating collagen into their formulations. The diets are based to help joint support and skin health, using collagen as a natural and effective ingredient.

Collagen supplements designed specifically for pets are becoming increasingly popular. These supplements are available in various forms, including powders and chews, making it convenient for pet owners to administer collagen to their pets, especially in dogs and cats seniors, or with high physical activity.


Feeding pets with collagen will provide a key protein for the maintenance and development of the health of their joints and the improvement of intestinal, cardiac- and skin health of pets of all ages.

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