The Benefits Of Dog Supplements
Estimated Read Time: 6 minutes
Summary: In this blog, we learn about the benefits of regularly giving your pup supplements and why consistency is key to success when it comes to supplementing your dog’s diet…
So, you’re thinking about introducing supplements into your dog’s diet? Is it just a fad that pet owners are being heavily marketed to, or are dog supplements actually super beneficial to your pup’s long-term health and wellness? And, why do you have to give them to your dog so frequently?
As humans, many of us take supplements alongside our day-to-day eating and exercise regimes. Whether that be extra protein to help muscle growth and recovery, Vitamin D during the darker, winter months, or just a daily multivitamin to help us feel confident that our body is receiving the base amount of essential nutrients. So really, many of us do understand that regular, daily supplementation can support the internal workings of the body (and yes, similar benefits can be reaped by your dog too!)
Alongside regular exercise, nutritious meals, ample playtime, good hygiene, and grooming, daily doggy dietary supplements can boost and promote your dog’s overall health, life longevity, and thus happiness.
The Benefits Of Dog Supplements
By providing daily supplements to your dog, like a Probiotic or a Multivitamin, you can help ensure your dog’s immune system is consistently robust, alert, and uncompromised - meaning it can fight off any health threats more effectively and efficiently. Good immunity levels can help lead to a diminished risk of inflammation, diseases, conditions, and cancers too.
Ensure Essential Nutrient Efficacy
Yes, your dog’s base diet should provide them with their everyday recommended allowance of vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients. However, these can be lost in some manufacturing, cooking, or heating process. A daily supplement can help replenish those vital levels and support maximum efficacy.
Can Help Improve Their Skin And Coat
Skin irritations are more common than you think, so providing your dog’s diet daily with coat-specific supplements that contain omega oils or other essential fatty acids can really help support the body’s system to reduce this issue.
Can Aid Healthy Digestion
Supplementing your pup's diet with a daily Probiotic can help build up the good bacteria in their gut, and thus improve digestion as well as many other things. This can actually greatly promote not only your dog’s physical processing of food, but a happier gut has also been touted to improve their mood as well!
Increases Absorption Rates
Your dog’s food should provide the base amount of nutrients, as we discussed earlier - but dietary supplements are typically made up of protein-based delivery systems that can help optimize your dog’s intake of essential compounds. This can help ensure maximum absorption into your dog’s body instead of risking those essential nutrients just being generated through the body and resulting in waste.
Can Improve Cognitive Functioning
Supplements that contain antioxidants can greatly maintain and improve a dog’s brain and cognitive functioning over time, particularly when combined with a routine of exercise, stimulating play, and socialization. They can also aid in reducing the risk of CCD (Canine Cognitive Dysfunction), which some dogs will experience as they move into the later chapters of their life. Despite being very different from how humans experience it, this condition is often referred to as “doggy dementia”.
Consistency Is Key
Daily supplementation is vital, so your dog’s body is consistently on top of their essential nutrient levels. One chew or tablet isn’t going to cut it - you don’t put gas in your car just once and expect it to drive forever, right? Nutrients are constantly being used by the body and supplements greatly contribute to its proper and optimum functioning. But, like any well-oiled mechanism; the supplies diminish and they need topping up again. By supplementing daily, you’re making sure your dog’s needed nutritional support isn’t going to run out.
In addition, like with every new routine, doing it once won’t guarantee immediate results. We know that one class at the gym isn't going to give us apparent abs or bulging biceps...it takes consistency and commitment, and a longer-term approach, to really make a difference.
Your dog’s body needs to build up its nutritional levels, particularly if you’re looking to improve a specific issue with supplementation; like skin irritations or digestive problems. When the body is experiencing an uncomfortable condition like this, it needs to accumulate the required levels of needed nutrients before it will start using it. This will mean it may take around 90 days in areas such as this, but some pet owners do see results much sooner in some cases. That’s because every dog is different! But, our advice is to keep using a supplement for 8 to 12 weeks before you decide it isn’t working for your pooch.
It’s also worth noting that as your dog moves through the different stages of their life, their supplemental needs will change too. For example, puppies need more support with their cognitive development, adult dogs will most likely benefit more with supplements that focus on recovery and recharging their energy, and senior dogs will require more targeted nutrition towards reducing inflammation and improving their joint health.
It’s never too late to start supplementing your dog’s diet though. Your dog’s body will thank you for it, regardless of when you decide to try supplementation. But, prevention is always generally advised by any animal health professional, so ideally start before or as soon as you sense any issues in your dog that supplementation may help with.
Author Dr. Mayfield-Davis, Melinda J. DVM, WCHP-AH “7 Benefits Of Your Dog Taking A Dietary Supplement” Vetericyn, Oct 23. 2019 https://vetericyn.com/blog/7-benefits-of-your-dog-taking-a-dietary-supplement/