When you visit a pet store, you’ll surely find several dog supplements being displayed on the shelves. But before you get one of these supplements, you might find yourself wondering if your dog needs any of them? And when it comes to giving your pet vitamin supplements, which of these vitamins will work best for your dog?
Read to find out the essential vitamins that every dog needs to stay healthy and active.
Does Your Dog Need Vitamins?
Your dog can get vitamins from the food that it eats every single day. In fact, some of the dog foods are labeled complete and balanced, which means that they are formulated with the essential vitamins and minerals that your dog needs.
Pet foods cater to the different life stages of your pooch. For instance, there’s food for puppies, and there are also those pet foods that are specifically designed for adult dogs. These foods contain different types of vitamins that are very beneficial for your pet. Also, certain dog breeds require a specific type of dog food. For instance, large breeds of puppies shouldn’t be fed with dog food that contains vitamins and minerals, such as calcium, since this can make them grow very quickly and they will end up suffering from certain conditions such as hip dysplasia.
Even if you feed your dog with the right kind of pet food that’s specially formulated for them, experts still recommend giving your dog vitamin supplements. Dogs that are fed with homemade foods may also need supplements to ensure that they are getting the right amount of vitamins for them to grow healthy.
Below are some of the essential vitamins to give to your dog.
Vitamin A is the kind of vitamin found in carrots and is highly responsible for giving us good vision. In dogs, this vitamin is essential for fetal development, growth, cell function, and immune function.
B Vitamins are a group of essential vitamins that play an indispensable role in your dog’s overall health and wellbeing.
Here’s what they can do for your pooch:
- Thiamine can help to regular your dog’s energy levels and carbohydrate metabolism. It’s also responsible for activating the ion channels in the dog’s neural tissue.
- Niacin, riboflavin, and B12 can help to facilitate the proper functioning of enzymes.
- Vitamin B6 is responsible for the generation of glucose and the proper functioning of the nervous system and red blood cells. It can also help with the immune response, hormone regulation, and gene activation.
- The folic acid plays an important role in the metabolism of nucleotide as well as in the mitochondrial protein synthesis.
Vitamin C is an essential antioxidant that drives the harmful free radicals away and may help with cognitive aging and reduce inflammation in dogs. It’s possible for your dog to synthesize Vitamin C, but supplements can be of great help for your dog.
Vitamin D, which is also called the “Sunshine Vitamin”, assists your dog in balancing out essential minerals such as calcium and phosphorus for the healthy growth of bones. Without this vitamin, your dog won’t be able to maintain or develop healthy and strong bones and muscles.
The Vitamin E is your dog’s biggest defense in fighting oxidative damage. It’s a fat-soluble vitamin that’s essential for fat metabolism and cell function. Vitamin E deficiency could lead to the degeneration of eyes and muscles and can make your dog suffer from reproductive problems.
Vitamin K plays a crucial role in activating the ability of blood to clot in your dog. If your dog doesn’t have enough of Vitamin K, ingesting poisons could lead to fatal consequences.
Choline is an important component in the dog’s phospholipid cell membrane. This vitamin helps with the proper brain and liver function and helps to keep your dog healthy. In fact, it’s sometimes used as part of an overall treatment plan for dogs suffering from epilepsy.
What About Dog Probiotics?
Some dog owners might not agree with this, but all dogs can benefit from probiotics by helping with their digestion and in modulating the overall immune system. Probiotics can produce SCFA or Short Chain Fatty Acids.
These help to inhibit the activity and growth of certain harmful bacteria, including Salmonella and E.coli. Above all, dog probiotics are also believed to help prevent urinary tract infections in your canine friends.