More dog owners than ever are paying special attention to what they’re feeding their dogs and we couldn’t be happier about it. Gone are the times of cheap, corn-based kibbles as almost all owners are spending time researching and purchasing the best diets. Whether you’re feeding premium kibble or a homemade diet, there are still plenty of supplements you can add to your dog’s food to boost their health. Over-supplementation is something you should avoid, but if you’re looking for a little help getting your dog’s coat in shape or boosting their immune system, check out these great supplements! Remember, always talk to your veterinarian about changing anything in your dog’s diet.
#1 – Fish Oil
Fish oil is an excellent source of omega-3 and 6 fatty acids. These essential fatty acids improve your dog’s skin and coat health, improve your dog’s overall immune system and reduce inflammation and pain. Be careful about feeding too much fish oil, however, because it can greatly reduce the amount of vitamin E in your dog’s system. Project Paws ™ Soft Chews are an excellent choice for supplementing fish oil in your dog’s diet, and your dog thinks they’re getting a treat!
Related: 11 Best Dog Foods for Allergies
#2 – Vitamin E
Vitamin E plays an important part in cardiac and immune health in both humans and dogs. It also improves muscle, skin and eye health. All of these are essential for keeping your dog healthy and happy and vitamin E shows no shortage of benefits. Although an overdose of fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin E is possible, it’s very rare and the benefits certainly outweigh the risks.
#3 – Rosemary
Rosemary is high in iron, vitamin B6, calcium and has been shown to be a strong antioxidant. Adding rosemary or a rosemary supplement to your dog’s is an excellent way to add in some natural herbs that will benefit your dog’s health and spice up their meals.
#4 – Biotin
Although Biotin deficiency is extremely rare in dogs, but if you notice your dog has very poor skin and fur you might want to consider adding a Biotin supplement to your dog’s food. You don’t need to have a Biotin deficient dog to see the results from the supplement, either. It’s effects are often strong enough to see in healthy dogs that just have dry, itchy skin. It can taste very bitter, so sometimes opening the powdered capsules and sprinkling them around your dog’s food will help them eat it.
#5 – Coconut Oil
Coconut oils is becoming more and more popular among dog owners and rightfully so – it’s full of benefits! It has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties which truly benefits your dog’s entire health. Coconut oil has been shown to improve skin conditions, aid in digestion and even help control and prevent diabetes. If you’re going to pick a supplement, coconut oil is an excellent choice.
#6 – Glucosamine/Chondroitin
Glucosamine and Chondroitin have long been used to help dogs suffering from arthritis, hip and elbow dysplasia and other joint conditions. They have been proven to help in these areas for decades and many are now discovering that glucosamine also aids in skin and digestive system ailments. With very few side effects and longtime use proven safe, these supplements are practically a no-brainer for many owners. If your dog doesn’t like supplements, there are many glucosamine/chondroitin treats available. Homemade bone broth is also full of the supplements, just don’t feed your dog the cooked bone pieces.
We give our dog the Project Paws ™ Advanced Soft Chew for Joints. Dogs think they’re getting a treat, and each purchase helps support animal shelters.
#7 – Peppermint
Peppermint is a great choice for someone looking to freshen their dog’s breath, as adding it to their food will do the trick! But there are more benefits than nicer smelling breath. Peppermint soothes upset stomachs and reduces gas and nausea.
#8 – Plain Yogurt
Giving plain, unsweetened yogurt is an excellent source of calcium and probiotics for dogs. If the yogurt has no sugar additives, it’s perfectly healthy to give to our canine companions so they can reap the many gastrointestinal health benefits. If your dog is lactose intolerant, feeding live, active cultures is just as healthy!
#9 – Vitamin C
Vitamin C is actually naturally produced by our dogs, so supplementation is often unnecessary. That said, certain medical conditions can benefit from vitamin C added into your dog’s meals, including kennel cough, glaucoma and other infections.
Related: Best Vitamin C Dog Chews
#10 – Pumpkin
Raw pumpkin is an excellent additive to your dog’s meals should they have any gastrointestinal upset. It is extremely high in fiber which makes loose stools firm and firm stools softer. No matter what kind of upset your pooch is having, pumpkin is likely to help. Just make sure you get plain, unsweetened canned pumpkin or puree it yourself. Pumpkin pie filling will most certainly make your dog sick!
#11 – Echinacea
Echinacea has long been used to treat many human illnesses with great success, so it only makes sense that supplementing our dogs would produce similar benefits. Although only one study has been done so far, the results showed a very positive outcome in the treatment of chronic respiratory infections in dogs being treated with Echinacea.
#12 – Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous Earth, or DE, is a substance made from crushed fossils of freshwater and marine organisms. There are two types, food grade and pool grade. For dogs, you’re going to want to used food grade as the pool grade is toxic.
By feeding the powder to dogs, DE kills and eliminates internal parasites of all types. It can also be spread in the yard and rubbed in your dog’s coat to kill fleas, ticks and other insect pests. You can put it into your carpet and in your dog’s bedding as well. It can be used safely internally and externally and is a very cheap way to control parasites!