Vitamin, Mineral, or Herb: What's the Skinny on Pet Health Supplements?
Feeding ourselves healthy, balanced diets is challenging enough, so when it comes to our pets, do we really know how to make the best choices for species, breed, lifestyle, and overall wellness that go beyond feeding and incorporate vitamins, minerals, herbs? If you are thinking, "I can barely remember to take my own daily multivitamin" you are certainly not alone. Supplementing your pet's diet can be relatively simple in practice, and highly effective for their optimal health, for example:
- as a preventative health measure with a daily multivitamin or probiotic
- as a needed therapy for illness or injury such as joint relief or bladder care
Although this may seem overwhelming at first, especially with so many options to choose from, a little knowledge can go a long way and help to provide optimal health for your pets.
Dogs and cats, like humans, have individualized needs, and although commercial pet food is manufactured as 'complete and balanced', formulas vary vastly from each other, each with different ratios of proteins, fats, carbs, fiber, calories, amino acids, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and more! One reason why pet health supplements are beneficial is to understand that there is not a 'one-size fits all' way of determining what "is" the best diet. Since most commercial pet food is highly processed, the nutrients of the ingredients become altered during the process, therefore boosting commercial diets with natural supplements aids the body where there is likely to be an imbalance.
Keep it simple. Think of the most common pet health supplements as the "Famous 4" formulas for Immunity, Digestion, Joints, and Skin & Coat. In a nutshell, these supplements work to strengthen weakness or reduce inflammation in your pet when their system is out of balance. Most often, these types of formulas are used to treat conditions therapeutically, but can be used preventatively to affect optimal health.
Like pet food, not all supplements are created equal. The National Animal Supplement Council (NASC) is a non-profit trade organization comprised of companies committed to providing health supplements and nutritional supplements of the highest quality for companion animals, primarily dogs, cats and horses. Look for their Quality Seal and buy with confidence. Similar to 'organic' certification, only NASC member companies operating under the stringent guidelines of NASC for manufacturing, labeling and adverse event reporting, and demonstrating responsible participation are permitted to use the NASC Quality Seal.
Want to learn more?Attend one of our upcoming (free) in-store Pet Nutrition classes!
- Learn the basics of vitamins, minerals, herbs, enzymes, probiotics, and EFAs
- Understand how the usage of balanced nutritional supplements can create optimal health.
- Discover what type of supplement can best impact immunity, skin/coat, digestion, joint mobility, or bladder health.
- RSVP here
And remember, when considering choosing supplements for your dog or cat, our Pet Experts at Pussy & Pooch can help you navigate options to best meet your needs. We feel passionately that selecting natural remedies are a very important part of your daily pet care routine. Learn what you can do today to enhance the health, well being, and longevity of your best friend. Click here for special deals on supplements and save 10-25%, now through June 3, 2012.