Should You Give Your Senior Dog Supplements?

Bottle of Fish Oil As people age, they seem to develop a sudden interest in supplements. Fish oil, probiotics, magnesium, iron… the list goes on and on.

It’s understandable why people are interested in taking supplements as they grow older. As the body ages, it may need an extra push to get the vital vitamins and minerals it needs to maintain proper health.

Just like people, dogs may also need some assistance in getting the vitamins and minerals that their bodies need to maintain a healthy and comfortable life, which begets the question: Should you give your dog supplements?

There is no right or wrong answer for this question, but there are certain things to consider before you decide to start giving your pup supplements.

The Benefits of Supplements for Aging Dogs

There are definitely some advantages to giving an aging dog supplements. They can help to ease the pain that is associated with arthritis, improve digestion, strengthen the teeth and bones, improve the coat and skin, boost eye sight and hearing, among other things.  They can also help with some very basic health issues your pitbull might face.

Given these benefits, supplements can certainly be advantageous for a senior dog. Before you decide to just start giving your dog a bunch of different supplements, though, it is important to speak to your vet. You don’t want to give your dog anything that he doesn’t need, and likewise, you want to make sure that you are choosing the right products to help any issues that he may be experiencing. Your vet will be able to guide you and make suggestions for the best supplements for your senior dog’s specific needs.

Types of Supplements

There are so many different types of supplements available for senior dogs, and each one serves a different purpose. Some of the most common supplements include:

  • Probiotics. These supplements can provide your aging pup with the good bacteria that is needed to help with digestion. They can also aid in fighting off certain disease and even the effects of stress that are associated with aging.  You can find some great brands to buy but be sure to check out the dog probiotic reviews first.
  • Glucosamine. This supplement is particularly beneficial for aging dogs who are experiencing joint pain and arthritis. Glucosamine can help to repair damaged cartilage in the joints, thus improving the mobility of your pup, reducing pain and improving his quality of life.
  • Essential fatty acids. Omega-3 an Omega-6 vital essential fatty acids. They can help to maintain critical brain function, boost the immune system and provide anti-inflammatory effects. While these essential fatty acids are important, a dog’s body cannot manufacture them on its own. For that reason, they need to be given supplements that offer essential fatty acids.

Be Mindful of Your Money

There are a lot of products out there that claim they offer the vitamins, nutrients, minerals and everything else your pet needs; however, a great deal of them don’t deliver. Instead, they are loaded with sugars, fats and other ingredients that can actually be detrimental to the health of your senior dog.

In order to avoid wasting your money and potentially giving your dog something that may not help him, or may actually hinder him, it is important to speak to your vet before purchasing supplements. Your vet will be able to suggest the best supplements to purchase for your aging dog’s specific needs, and may even have options available right in her office!  Also, don’t forget that some supplements can be found in your dog’s food.  Make sure to check the labels to find out first.

If you do decide to give your senior dog supplements, make sure you observe your pup’s behavior. If you see improvements with the supplements, they are working and you should keep on giving them to him; however, if you don’t see an improvement, you may want to ditch the supplements.