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Dog vitamins or supplements for dogs ought to be administered if your pet is on a home cooked diet that you may suspect falls short of being properly balanced. There are a variety of vitamins for dogs that serve to compliment meals that are prepared at home by dog owners. A dog’s nutritional needs are complex, and homemade meals may or may not contain all of the vitamins, minerals, and other micro-nutrients that a dog needs to be in good health.
What Is A Vitamin Exactly?
Vitamins are heterogeneous compounds and organic substances that are required for the normal functioning of the body. Vitamins are found in small quantities in practically all foods, with the exception of those that have been refined excessively. A constant criticism of supermarket dog foods is that the available options either lack many important vitamins for dogs or they are far too expensive. The word ‘vitamin’ comes from the Latin ‘Vita’ which means ‘life’, and vitamins are indeed necessary for the correct metabolic function and absorption of nutrients in the bodies of animals. Vitamins do not form part of the structure of the tissues in the body. Instead, they act as ‘facilitators’ in the body in that they permit the body’s enzymes -the catalysts for thousands of chemical reactions, and in many ways an organism’s “construction workers”- to more easily perform their critical tasks.
Vitamins for Dogs That Are Pregnant
For a pregnant dog, vitamins may be used to bolster the nutritional value of a diet. Pregnant and lactating dogs have certain nutritional needs, and therefore ought to take certain supplements for dogs that are rich in specific vitamins. A typical dog pregnancy lasts for about 62 days. For the first half of this gestation period, there is little growth of the embryos, and you will not see much change in your pregnant dog’s food intake during this time. In fact, many dog owners don’t even realize that their pet is actually expecting puppies at this point. Things start to change sometime during the fifth week of the pregnancy when there tends to be a noticeable decrease in appetite.
The sudden drop in appetite shouldn’t last longer than a couple of days. It is in fact a turning point of sorts, and afterwards a pregnant dog starts to increase in size rapidly, and will require more food. To be exact, during this stage of the pregnancy the pregnant female will be consuming up to 30% more food. The health of the pregnant dog and her developing pups depends not on just having enough food, but also upon receiving the right nutrients and dog vitamins. To this end, top dog breeders are known to administer a supplement that contains the right mix of minerals and vitamins for dogs that are not only carrying pups, but will also be lactating. There are lots of pregnancy specific dog vitamins out there. Whichever one you choose, make sure that it is rich in B vitamins, vitamin D3 (necessary for calcium absorption) and vitamin E.
Vitamins And Vegetarian Dogs
For those dog owners who are all round animal lovers, they should know that it is possible to raise an animal on a vegetarian or even a vegan diet. However, it can’t be overstated enough that when it comes to raising a healthy dog, vitamins are not “complimentary” in this case; vitamin rich supplements for dogs are an absolute necessity for any dog that is placed on a diet that does not contain any animal products. In particular, supplements for dogs that include a taurine and L-carnitine must be given to dogs on such a diet.