Like humans, dogs, too, need food supplements to maintain their health and avoid the risk of nutrients deficiency. Many pet owners like to give their pet supplements so that their dogs look healthy, their skin and hair remain nourished, and they do not face health issues in their earlier times.
You might be shocked to hear that about every third pet dog and cat of the U.S. receive a proper dosage of vitamins and minerals in their diet. Thus, the pet owners of the U.S. keep their dogs and cats healthy for their lifetime.
Most of the supplements are multivitamins that help in preventing joint problems or arthritis-related issues in the dogs. As per the study published in Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association that the multivitamins and fatty acid supplements help in keeping the dog’s joints healthy, lower the shedding and improve the texture of the coat and make it shinier.
They also suggest that dog owners can also give their pet probiotics that help in preventing gastrointestinal problems and enrich their body with antioxidants that reverse the effects of aging like cognitive dysfunction.
Packaged Facts, a market researching firm, showed the data that as the population of overweight and aging dogs grows, the demand in the market for dog supplements is also expected to grow by 37% till 2012, which is about $1.7 billion turnovers.
The variety of dog supplements available in the market is astonishing. Dog owners may be glad to know that various companies make the dog supplements with concoctions of different types of herbs, vitamins, and minerals, and other essential ingredients that help in dog health maintenance, boost their immune system, reduce the aging process, or help in treating and fighting against specific diseases. Most of the ingredients found in the dog supplements are also used for the popular supplements that come for humans. Let’s check out these dog supplements and know what dog supplements are, what are the nutrient facts about these supplements, how they are useful for the dog’s health, and what the best type of dog supplements available in the market are.
- Glucosamine- Dog Supplement
The best and biggest supplement in the veterinary world is the glucosamine supplement. Mostly this supplement is sold solely or with the combination of MSN, green mussel extract, chondroitin, and other ingredients as per the requirements of dog’s health. This supplement is readily available and sold by the stores, most of the veterinarians or add in some of the commercial food for the pet, and it is one of the ubiquitous supplement. Most veterinarians suggest Glucosamine to the pet owners as a useful supplement for osteoarthritis treatment in dogs and cats.
This supplement is also recommended as the best supplement for the treatment of feline diseases, like cystitis, potential, and uncomfortable chronic inflammatory internal health issues in the urinary bladder. However, there is no such strong evidence that can prove this supplement can improve such chronic problems of pet animals.
- Fish Oil – Dog Supplement
Fish oil is the second most popular and highly recommendable supplement for pets next after glucosamine. For humans, fish oil supplements are widely used for lowering the lipid levels in the blood and lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
However, there are some controversial facts about using this supplement, like how much amount of this supplement is useful and for what health conditions this supplement can work or whether eating fish is more beneficial than taking the supplement or not. There is also some evidence that fish oil supplements can improve and help prevent cardiovascular diseases.
Dogs and cats do not face cardiovascular issues and atherosclerosis like humans, so they do not require these supplements like humans. Instead, fish oil supplements in animals are recommended to prevent and treat skin issues and allergies. There is one survey conducted in 2010 on the effects of fish oil on pets treatment shows that there is some evidence of this supplement to improve the conditions of pet coat quality and treating the canine skin issues and allergies. Using fish oil supplements for pets can help in reducing the dosage of steroids that are used to treat animals for controlling their itching issues.
Another common usage of fish oil supplements for pets is to treat arthritis issues. However, for humans, there is very little evidence that shows significant effects on improving arthritis. By going deep into the data and significant studies shows that dogs and cats can get benefits of fish oil supplements and improve their overall health.
- Probiotics – Dogs Food Supplement
There is a profound infectious disease doctor, Mark Crislip, who has eloquently presented the theory about the benefits of probiotics on the human body, and the bottom line of the theory presents that probiotics are beneficial for pets too. As rational human beings, we only understand very little about the importance and complexity of the ecological effects of the gastrointestinal tract, that what bugs are in there, and what they do inside the tract. So to maintain the proper amounts of essential probiotics make sense to maintain health. Adding some Lactobacillus can be beneficial for improving your health.
The clinical studies that are in support of humans show the benefits in some conditions like antibiotics linked with diarrhea, but so many claims that probiotic products that are specially used for health maintenance and boosting the immune system are worthless and unsupported.
However, some studies show that probiotics are effective therapy used for improving the gastrointestinal disease seems to be promising. The doctors give numerous suggestions that probiotics are useful in treating some health conditions.
- Multivitamins – Dog Food Supplements
Multivitamins are popular in the health industry and touted in the market as insurance against the imperfect and less nutritional diet. According to Harriet Hall, a family physician, previously discussed the multivitamins and its importance regarding health.
Multivitamins supplements help pet animals, such as dogs, to get all the essential vitamins and minerals that they do not get from their food. These supplements help in improving their health, keep them away from diseases, improve their coat texture as well as reduce the amount of shedding.
However, never start giving your dog these multivitamins by yourself. Always ask your dog veterinarian for the proper dosage or whether your dog needed the multivitamins dosages or not. If they do not have the deficiency of such vitamins, then there is no such use of multivitamins. Most commercial pet foods and diets that are available in the market usually consist of all the essential vitamins that can provide your dog with a fully balanced diet. These commercial pet foods are enriched with nutrients in such a way that they keep your pet healthy and prevent diseases like skin allergies. So there is less of a chance to worry about the pets that they need extra nutrients in their diet.
Moreover, giving these supplements without any deficiency can lead to increased toxic levels that are increased due to fat-soluble minerals and vitamins. If you feed your dogs with the homemade and raw home diets, then there are some chances that your dog or any pet may face the deficiency of such vitamins and require multivitamins supplements.
- Lysine – Dog Food Supplement
Lysine is a type of supplement that is an amino acid hypothesized as the supplement that can help in the treatment and prevention of the Feline Herpesvirus infection. This virus is very common among the animals to develop, and most likely, cats can easily get exposed to this infection. Clinical symptoms of this virus in your pets are sneezing, conjunctivitis, and nasal congestion, and these infections can range from mild to severe conditions. Some pets may get initial impacts of the infections, but most of the pets get chronically infected by the virus. Due to the lower immune system, carelessness toward medication, or stress, there are chances that the virus can affect the pet’s body again. Vaccination can help in reducing the effects and severity of these symptoms, but in some cases, the virus can be developed.
Thus, lysine supplement is developed to interfere with the effects of FHV-1 in the pets by blocking the growth of the infection through the intake of amino acids.
- Milk Thistle – Dog Food Supplement
It is one of the herbal supplements that are highly recommended by an expert nutritionist. Similar to the glucosamine supplement, Milk thistle is also a supplement that can be used as an alternative nutritional dosage for improving health. The primary ingredient in this supplement is the Silymarin. This ingredient has potent effects and can interfere in the body with proinflammatory chemicals as well as works like antioxidants.
Moreover, the main uses of silymarin in the human body are recommended to protect or treat the liver-related issues that arise due to damage caused by toxins and infection, causing diseases. Moreover, it is also used to improve severe diabetics conditions, as well as to protect the functioning of kidneys that get hampered due to toxins. Whereas in pets like dogs and cats, the major use of this supplement is to support the functioning of the liver regardless of any specific diseases.
- SAM-e or S-adenosyl methionine – Dog Food Supplement
It is a type of chemical that occurs throughout the human body and several astonishing effects. Some clinical evidence shows that in human beings, SAM-e can improve conditions like depression, arthritis, and other health-related conditions.
Whereas, in pets like dogs and cats, SAM-e chemical is used as a protectant from the damages caused by the toxins, with the combination of Milk Thistle. Veterinarians also recommended this supplement to cure arthritis and other severe health conditions.
- Digestive Enzymes – Dog Supplement
The digestive enzymes are used to improve the digestion process in the pets as raw food when processed in factories, the digestive enzymes present in the food get killed, and pets have to struggle to digest them. So to improve the digestive system functioning, veterinarians suggest the pet owners give their pet digestive enzymes if their pet is facing any such issues. However, giving your pet raw food sometimes can naturally improve their digestion, but in severe conditions, digestive enzymes are recommendable.
- Coenzyme Q10 – Dog Supplement
Coenzyme Q10 is also called Ubiquinone, and it is similar to most of the dietary supplements recommended improving the wide range of health conditions. In humans, this supplement is recommended by the doctors to improve cardiovascular disease, migraines, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, and many chronic health conditions, as well as recommend the general tonic to boost the immune system.
For pets like dogs and cats, this supplement has mainly recommended for treatment and prevention against heart diseases and aging causes cognitive dysfunction.
- Azodyl – Dog Food Supplement
Azodyl is a type of supplement which is a mixture of probiotic and probiotic organisms that are widely used in the treatment and improving the kidney failures in pets. Some theoretical argument supports the use of Azodyl for “enteric dialysis,” this is inhabiting the gastrointestinal tract with lots of bacteria that are responsible for breaking down nitrogenous wastes that the kidneys remove from the human body which can lower the levels of such substances and enhance the clinical symptoms that cause renal failure.
So the question arises, whether the supplements work on pets? Are these supplements worth buying? The answer is Yes, they do help in improving some chronic health conditions. But before you give your pet any of the supplements, always consult your pet veterinarian and ask them what the dog is actually needing. You can also give your dog a nutritious, healthy diet that contains almost all the essential nutrients in it.