Update - I think this is pertinent to an older post. Mikee is now a healthy, solid 8yo. Following some advice here, I've dropped him from a solid, powerful, lean 80lbs down to a thinner [emaciated from a Lab's point of view ;-) ] 75lbs. I hate the look... from a vanity perspective [His not mine ;-) ...]. But, he is a big dog in very good health.
Other things that I have done:
1. I ain't going jogging, that ship sailed long ago. But, I do walk him a mile, twice a day.
2. Mikee is a 'running' dog [as opposed to a calmer Golden Retriever ;-) ], so I let him run everyday in a 6 acre field right behind me. I try to get him play dates in the field, but I'm lucky to get four 30min. sessions a month.
3. He was a powerful jumper, so I stopped encouraging that, and he rarely stresses his hips.
4. He almost never stands on his hind legs or jumps up. He will lean on people, but doesn't jump on them, and I stop people who try to encourage, before he can start. [I know what an 80lb jumping Lab can do to people...]
5. I haven't done any swimming [A Lab that doesn't swim or like water! ???], concerted exercise, or supplements.
6. He 'plays' with some boykins and a chiweenie 1/10 his size! [Chihuahua x Dachshund]. He sprained his front paw [I got a video of that ;-) ] or backleg, and he has been more careful when chasing them.
7. I like Omega-3 oil and have been using it myself for more than 10 years. Mikee gets it in his food, but I quickly stopped as a supplement for him, because it caused him to lick his rear [pruritus?], regardless of dose, which disappeared quickly when I stopped.
So, I am currently happy with his progress. My previous dog - the same expensive breed - the very rare designer dog - a Golden, German Sheprador [Look at the avatar, profile picture - I expect most dog people to have seen his cousins in the US, especially in the country, where there are GSDs and Labs. ;-) ] - started to get arthritic twinges just before he turned 7yo. I'd tried Cosequin, and it helped a little. I haven't put Mikee on Cosequin yet. But, I do feed him lots of raw vegetables and berries... while I'm fixing a daily salad, he gets a handful, in addition to some carrots... as 'chew toys'.
So, the next question will be longevity. Normal forecast was an average of 10 - 12 years. Previous dog was 16 years, beginning to age after 13yo, and quickly declining 15yo. So, I'm hoping I learned something [???] and can extend Mikee to 17 or 18 years old ... Maybe if I took him to the Beach for some vacation time....