Unlike receiving regular meals, dog nutrition is most often overlooked but is as important as exercise. Just as humans require supplements, dogs need them also to maintain healthy coats, active brain functionality, strong joints, and a healthy digestive system.

Providing brand dog food does not guarantee a healthy dog. Like humans, dogs lack nutrients in their daily diets and require supplements. Lacking in nutrients can have adverse effects on a dog's overall health Dogs can develop hip dysplasia by lacking in, or taking improper, supplements. It is just as important to know what supplements to give your dog as it is to actually give them.

brand dog food
does not guarantee a
healthy dog.

There are a variety of supplements on the market. The market for dog supplements is expected to increase 37 percent by 2012 and reach $1.7 billion in sales. So, then the question to be answered is, which supplements are available and what are their benefits?

Because dog food alone lacks the variety needed, a dog's diet might lack certain vitamins and minerals. The most common supplement given to dogs is multivitamins and fatty acids, which reduces shedding and improves the shine of a dog's coat. Another popular supplement is probiotics, which help alleviate gastrointestinal problems or antioxidants that counteract cognitive dysfunction.

Your dog's food: Look for high quality dog foods as opposed to dog brands. Check for ingredients such as fillers and preservatives as these may have insufficient amounts of nutrients that are vital to a dog's health. Organic dog foods are among the most popular because of the quality of their nutritional value.

Vitamins and minerals: A healthy dog diet includes Riboflavin, Niacin, and vitamins A, D, E, K, B6, and a healthy balance ratio of Omega 3 and 6, which help keep allergies under control and protect against harmful elements in the environment. Additionally, Omegas promote alertness, healthy, shiny coats, and counteracts itchy skin, and stomach problems. Iodine helps a dog's thyroid gland to function optimally and Zinc partners with red blood cells to remove carbon dioxide. Administering minimal nutrient requirements should eliminate the dermatological irritations experienced as a result of dietary deficiencies.

Fatty Acids: These supplements protect and promote lustrous, shiny coats.

Weight connection: It is common for a dog lacking in nutrients to experience weight challenges. Dog food alone will not reverse this; proper nutrients are required to achieve optimal balance. A clue to a dog's overall health is a healthy coat, proper dog food, and knowing the importance of nutritional supplements for dogs. This will increase their quality of life and what better way is there to show our furry loved ones our appreciation?