Do you take a daily multivitamin? Chances are, you do—and we mean that quite literally. As a matter of fact, more than half of all American adults report taking a daily supplement.
As a pet parent, you may find yourself wondering whether your dog could also benefit from a daily vitamin supplement. Can dogs take multivitamins? How do you know when it’s time to start giving your pet supplements?
Keep reading to find out!
Reasons to Give Your Dog a Multivitamin
Every dog is different, so each dog can benefit from a multivitamin for a different reason.
Some reasons you may want to give your dog a multivitamin include:
Your dog has been diagnosed with a vitamin or mineral deficiency and needs some supplemental support.
You feed your dog a home-prepared diet (such as a raw diet), and you want to make sure you’re filling any potential nutritional gaps.
Your dog is a picky eater or simply doesn’t eat much, and you could use some peace of mind that he’s getting all of his necessary nutrients.
- Your dog is perfectly healthy, and you want him to stay that way for as long as possible!
Not sure if a daily multivitamin is the right choice for your dog? Talk to your veterinarian for some insight, personalized for your dog.
Benefits of Multivitamins for Dogs
There are a variety of vitamins and minerals that are important for your dog’s health. Every dog needs a combination of water, protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.
While your pooch would ideally be getting all of those necessary nutrients through his food, there’s a good chance that he could use an extra boost.
Dog multivitamins offer a range of benefits. They fill any nutritional gaps in your dog’s diet; they keep health issues at bay; they maintain optimal health and promote long, healthy lives.
More specifically well-rounded vitamins can:
- Promote healthy skin and coat
- Boost your dog’s immune system
- Support strong bones and healthy joints
- Promote healthy digestion
- Boost mood and energy levels
When to Start Giving Your Dog a Multivitamin
You don’t need to wait until your dog starts showing signs of health issues to start taking action. Addressing existing health problems is one thing, but defending against them so they don’t occur is even better.
That said, you should wait until your dog is at least one year old (or longer, depending on breed) before you start giving him dietary supplements. This is because baby Fido’s bones and joints are still forming, and are more vulnerable to damage. The last thing you want is for your good intentions to do more harm than good.
If you’re not sure whether your pup is old enough to take supplements, it never hurts to check with your vet.
Choosing the Right Supplements for Your Pet
When it comes to pet supplements, there are seemingly endless options to choose from. Understandably, choosing the best supplements for your pet can be an overwhelming process.
Dog supplements can typically be broken down into four categories:
- Prebiotics & probiotics
- Amino & fatty acids
If your dog has a specific health need, you can choose a specific supplement—vitamin E for healthy skin, and glucosamine for healthy joints, for example.
Otherwise, you can opt for an all-encompassing multivitamin, such as PetHonesty’s 10-for-1 Multivitamin. These tasty soft chews combine a well-rounded blend of vitamins, minerals, omegas, probiotics, and glucosamine to promote healthy joints, skin, digestion, and immune system.
When choosing supplements for your pet, remember these rules of paw:
Never give your dog supplements formulated for humans.
Always purchase your dog’s supplements from a reputable brand.
Choose supplements that address your pet’s health needs. Not only will the wrong supplement be unhelpful, but it could also lead to further health issues.
- Consider your pet’s age, size, and breed. For example, an adult Yorkie and a Rottweiler puppy will have drastically different needs.
If a supplement sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Supplements are not meant to act as a replacement for medications and a healthy diet; there’s no such thing as a magic cure-all. Supplements are supposed to be just that—supplementary.