Are Supplements Good For Dogs?

by | May 17, 2019 | Health and Nutrition

Many people use different types of supplements for one reason or the other, and the trend is catching on pets as well. Supplements are used to manage various types of problems such as arthritis, joint problems, digestion, cardiovascular health, heart issues, coat problems, and others.

Living things, especially mammals require vitamins and minerals to survive. While the body can produce some of these nutrients, it can’t synthesize others, and you need to get them through your diet or supplementation.

If your dog’s food contains adequate amounts of all the vitamins and nutrients it needs to live a healthy life, you don’t need to supplement. Dogs need vitamins B1, B6, K folic acid, niacin, riboflavin, and others for important metabolic and biochemical functions in their body. However, you might need to supplement if your pooch is eating homemade meals, especially if you don’t know whether the meals provide the nutrients the animal needs to thrive.

Before supplementing your dog’s diet, it’s important to talk to your vet. Some supplements and herbs may interact with medication or have adverse effects on your animal. If your dog is on a well-balanced diet and has no pre-existing health conditions, you might not have to supplement.

However, supplementation may be necessary if your dog is exhibiting certain health or behavioral changes. Consult your vet to identify the real cause of the problem. Sometimes, the problem might be due to a nutrient deficiency, in which case supplementation may be necessary. If you are looking for great supplements to enhance your dog’s health, here are some of the best things to boost your dog’s wellbeing and longevity.

Glucosamine

Glucosamine is the most widely used supplement for dogs. Glucosamine is used for treating arthritis in all types of dogs, especially senior dogs. The supplement is an amino acid that occurs naturally in the body for cartilage formation. It is made from the shells of shellfish and can also be synthesized in the laboratory.

Glucosamine can be used to treat mobility problems such as arthritis, elbow and hip dysplasia, joint problems and others. Vets and dog owners have been using this supplement for several years, and new studies show that it can also help improve digestive and skin problems.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an important nutrient for the maintenance of the immune system and heart health in humans and canines. Vitamin E promotes muscle health, improves vision and skin health. If your dog lacks the vitamin in its diet, it’s important that you supplement it. While you can overdose vitamin E, it’s extremely rare, and the benefits are far more than any complications that might arise from its use. It’s a powerful antioxidant vitamin which your dog should not lack.

Biotin

Most dogs don’t have a biotin deficiency, but it can still occur. Does your dog have a very poor, lackluster skin and fur? He might be suffering from a biotin deficiency, and a supplement may be appropriate in that regard. You can also supplement Biotin if your dog has itchy and dry skin as it can quickly help transform the coat into something beautiful and healthy.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C may not be necessary to supplement if your dog is healthy as it can produce it naturally. However, you may need to supplement vitamin C if your dog has health conditions such as glaucoma, kennel cough, and others. Vitamin C and E are powerful antioxidants that can protect your dog against aging-induced health problems such as cognitive dysfunction and memory loss. They can help reduce inflammation and treat heart diseases.

Antioxidants are compounds which protect the body against the harmful effects of the oxidative activities of free radicals which can wreak havoc on cell membranes, DNA, and invariably cause cell death or mutation which can lead to different health problems.

Probiotics

Probiotics have gained popularity as dog supplements after it became a hit among humans. Probiotics are gut-healthy foods which promote the growth of healthy bacteria and yeast in the gut. The gut microbiota helps digest food and promote food absorption, as well as aid in the synthesis of vitamins and other important nutrients your dog needs to live a healthy life.

Before giving your dog any supplement, remember to consult your vet. Also, your pooch might not require any supplement if it’s already on a well-balanced and complete diet. But, supplementation may be a great way of promoting good health in your pet if it has certain health conditions.