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Should You Give Your Dog Supplements?

Posted on October 13 2011

Have you ever thought about supplementing your dog's diet with nutritional vitamins and supplements? If so, you're certainly not alone, after all, you probably take vitamins yourself, but should you get your dog on a multivitamin as well? Some will argue that you should give your dog that extra nutrition, while others will insist that the regular dog food is adequate and “complete”. It really boils down to personal choice, and it is really up to the individual owner, but there are some good reasons to add supplements to your dog's diet, but before you do, you should speak to your veterinarian. You might consider checking with a holistic veterinarian since they are more current on dog supplementing.

There are three types of supplementations when it comes to dogs, which include:

1. Vitamins
2. Minerals
3. Herbs

All can play a role in keeping Fido healthier, but often if you are feeding a high-quality holistic food, it probably is not necessary. On the other hand, just like people get vitamins from their food, taking extra in the way of supplements can help add more vitality to your dog's life. While some will say that your dog gets enough of these supplements from their food, others disagree and state that some dogs do not eat a good diet or are fed grocery store brand foods, which is basically like a person eating McDonald's every day.

There are some supplements you want to be careful with such as calcium, because if a dog gets too much of this substance, it can lead to bone problems, particularly in growing puppies. Likewise, with vitamin D, if the dog has too much it can actually cause damage to the kidneys. The same holds true with overdoing it on minerals, too much is not always a good thing when it comes to supplementation.

On the other hand, many herbs can be added to your dog's diet without any problem and may be quite helpful. For instance, if your dog suffers from flatulence, which is a common problem for some breeds, you can give him or her pure fennel seed powder and it will not only stop the gas, but it will also freshen his or her breath. You can buy fennel seed powder in the capsules, just make sure there are no fillers and it is the whole herb. Open the capsule and pour the contents on a plate, mix it with a tiny bit of pure honey and your dog will think he is getting the best treat around. Most dogs love fennel as it has a licorice taste and smell to it.

Likewise, if your dog ate something he or she should not have, you can give them pure ginger powder (no fillers or binders) mixed with a bit of honey and this can also help to settle their tummies. Some herbs dogs cannot have, so, therefore, you want to speak with a holistic veterinarian before you begin any treatment regimen to ensure the herbs are okay for Fido to have.

All of these are in a proper vegan diet.

Samantha Reynolds is a writer for Patioshoppers.com, the leading online store for artificial Christmas trees, Christmas holiday decor and other home decor goods.

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