Important Vitamins Your Dog Needs
Vitamins for dogs are as essential as they are for people. Vitamins play an important role in the health of a dog and should be considered as a dietary supplement according to the age, size and physical condition of the dog, as well as the type of food he consumes. Vitamins are present in trace amounts in most foods and they are essential for numerous functions performed in the body. For example:
- Act as antioxidants which protect the body from harmful toxins
- Help digestion and nutrient absorption by breaking down carbohydrates, proteins, and fats
- Aid growth of muscles and bones
- Keep the skin and hair healthy
- Help ensure normal reproduction
Supplementation of Vitamins to Dogs
Are vitamin supplements necessary for dogs? You may ask. Many veterinarians and dog care providers strongly feel that they are necessary. For puppies, vitamin supplementation may help ensure that they get the vitamins needed for healthy tissues, strong bones and teeth, and overall good health. For adult dogs, vitamin supplementation can help make sure that they are always healthy and in top form. For aging dogs who tend to eat less and as a result absorb fewer nutrients including vitamins and minerals, and at the same time, lose more of them through the kidneys and urinary tract, vitamin supplementation becomes essential. Antioxidants such as Vitamins A, C, and E can also help eliminate free radicals and toxicities from the body. This may help slow the aging process and may prevent diseases such as cancer.
The Petstrips Multi Vitamin Strips are functional supplement strips with premium ingredients that support physical performance, antioxidants, hip & joint, heart, immune, skin, liver, & gut health for dogs of all ages, breeds, and sizes. For animals with sensitive skin, this formula contains Omega 3 fish oil and Vitamin E for skin health to help maintain normal moisture and pantothenic acid to help reduce oxidative stress – plus they contain no grain, corn or soy derivatives! This dog supplement contains Ingredients that may also promote immune and cardiovascular support to make sure your pet feels better than ever before. These strips also contain a four-strain vitamin blend, enzymes, and niacin to promote healthy digestion and gut flora while supporting normal bowel function for dogs. Multi- Vitamin strip feature powerful antioxidants, a premium omega 3 oil and Vitamins A, B, & D to promote healthy cardiovascular function, support liver health and enhance immune response.
Water Soluble and Fat Soluble Vitamins
There are two types of vitamins: water soluble vitamins (group B’s and C) and fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K). The difference of these two types of vitamins is on how they are being stored in the body. Fat soluble vitamins are stored in the liver and fatty tissue, whereas water soluble vitamins are stored in only minute amounts by the body. Therefore, water soluble vitamins need to be replenished daily, since any excesses are excreted by the body every day.
Vitamin A is very important to ensure the proper growth and development of puppies and it is essential for healthy hair and skin, strong muscles, as well as good night vision. Deficiency in vitamin A can cause female dogs to have irregular ovulation and male dogs to become sterile. Vitamin A is also an important antioxidant which may protect against certain forms of cancer in dogs. Overdoses of Vitamin A could cause weakness in the muscles and abnormal formation of bones. However, unless a dog is given excessively high doses of vitamin A over a long period of time, toxicity is very rare.
B group vitamins can be found in meat, milk, vegetables and fruit. B vitamins are important in maintaining a positive environment for neural regeneration. B vitamins are also essential for growth. Deficiency of B vitamins will result in a loss of reflexes and nerve control; poor growth; appetite loss; diarrhea; hair loss; eye abnormalities; and heart failure. B-complex (in particular B2 and B6) is also essential for the prevention of bladder stone formation in dogs. B complex is a balanced form of vitamin B supplementation, which is the only way B vitamins should be given, unless instructed otherwise by your veterinarian. Since they are water soluble, any excess can be eliminated in the urine.
Dogs can produce Vitamin C in their bodies under normal situations, but when a dog is under stress (either physically due to, say, an illness, or mentally due to for example boarding at a kennel), he may need vitamin C in excess of his manufacturing capacity.
Dogs get Vitamin D mainly from foods. Vitamin D helps the body to retain calcium and is therefore important in bone and skeletal formation, as well as nerve and muscle control. Recent studies have also found associations between low serum vitamin D levels and higher risks of certain cancer types.
The main sources of Vitamin E are from cold pressed vegetable oils, such as safflower oil and wheat germ, meats, nuts, and green leafy vegetables. Vitamin E is an important nutrient and plays an important role in cell respiration and the formation of cell membranes. It is also a powerful antioxidant which facilitates fat oxidation and increases the production of HDL (good) cholesterol. Vitamin E is useful in preventing and slowing the development of heart conditions and other muscle disorders. At higher doses, it has anti-inflammatory properties as well, and can prevent and improve chronic skin problems and immune mediated disorders. For dogs with skin and coat problems, adding Vitamin E to their diets will also help greatly. Deficiencies of Vitamin E will cause cell damage, reproductive failure, and a host of other problems, such as skin problems, inflammatory problems, etc.