As with people, there are several nutritional supplements available to enhance your dog's health and treat various health issues. Which supplements may help your dog depends on the conditions your dog
may be experiencing, as well as factors like age and activity levels.
Fish Oil Supplements
Fish oil contains Omega 3 essential fatty acids, which provide anti-inflammatory benefits, as well as benefits to fur and skin. Supplements containing fish oil are often prescribed by veterinarians, and are available to with dog dry skin or dog hair loss, as well as kidney issues. A dull, flaky coat or excessive shedding may each be symptoms of inadequate Omega-3 in his diet. A fish oil based supplement may improve the appearance and health of your dog's skin and coat. However, note that if your dog has a severe issue with these conditions that fails to improve with supplements, it is advisable to visit your veterinarian to rule out issues such as allergies or thyroid conditions.
Osteoarthritis is the leading cause of pain in dogs, impacting as many as one in five adult dogs. Arthritis is a result of a breakdown of cartilage forming the padding between bones, allowing bones to rub against each other at joints and causing pain. Supplements can slow the breakdown of cartilage by providing cartilage components to the joints. Glucosamine is a leading supplement to reduce joint pain. Young dogs' bodies create the glucosamine they need for healthy joints, but as a dog ages, his body many not produce enough glucosamine to maintain sufficient cartilage for their joints. A supplement can provides this building block for cartilage creation in the body. Chondrotin is another highly-recommended supplement for joint pain. According to the journal Arthritis Foundation, chondrotin is thought to increase shock absorption of collagen as well as combat the enzymes that break down cartilage. (For maximum effectiveness, be sure to choose a joint supplement that contains both glucosamine and chondrotin like Yumeda's joint supplement.)
Another supplement many people are aware of the benefits of is probiotics for digestive health. Probiotics are a class of bacteria normally found in a healthy digestive tract that aid in digestion. Cultured dairy products, such as yogurt and kefir, are natural food sources of friendly bacteria, as these bacteria are used to create the end product. This is what makes yogurt a healthy food for both people and dogs. Probiotic supplements can deliver high quantities of these same helpful bacteria to the intestine, assisting with digestion. This is especially helpful if your dog has taken antibiotic medicines, as antibiotics do not discriminate between killing off harmful bacteria causing illness or infection and killing the helpful gut bacteria. Therefore, it is especially advisable to give your dog a quality probiotic supplement after completing antibiotics for other health issues.
Supplements may help improve several health issues in dogs and are highly recommended to augment your dog's healthy diet to provide some of the benefits described above. Remember, always follow the dosing directions carefully and if symptoms persist, visit your veterinarian for a check-up.