You know what they say, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. While it’s probably true, we believe you can teach its owner some new things that can give your lovely old dog a healthy energy boost.
Supplements for elderly dogs are a great way to ease some of the many problems that old age can bring. The long list can include arthritis, skin issues, aching joints, hip dysplasia, osteoarthritis, cataracts and vision loss. It’s not easy seeing your beloved pooch struggle with life once the aches and pains of old age set in. But thankfully supplements can help.
Here are five of the best supplements for senior dogs that will improve their quality of life and lift their doggy spirits.
Among the many benefits of CBD oil, pain and anti-inflammatory relief are included. An old dog that is struggling with mobility issues can have its movements visibly improved with regular doses of CBD oil. As your dog gets older you may notice it takes longer to get up, walks more slowly or with a limp. CBD oil can really help these symptoms of old age.
CBD oil is also used for chronic pain caused by injury and surgery.
The oil is made from the hemp plant and has been used for medicinal reasons for hundreds of years. The oil only contains very small amounts of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) so your dog won’t get high. Simply put a few drops in your furry friend’s mouth or add to food or water. It usually doesn’t take long to see the benefits of CBD oil for your dog.
Glucosamine and chondroitin are found in healthy cartilage. It needs to be replaced in older dogs because their cartilage breaks down and joint fluid is lost. This causes them to suffer from joint pain. Glucosamine supplements help regenerate the cartilage. Glucosamine also has anti-inflammatory properties. It is recommended this supplement is taken with essential fatty acids for maximum benefit.
Antioxidants can be given to your aging pet to improve memory and cognitive function. Vitamin E keeps the immune system functioning well. Vitamin C gives an energy boost and protects joints that are often weakened with old age.
Decaffeinated green tea is also beneficial for dogs entering the twilight years. It can support the heart and liver and also has anti-cancer properties and offers brain health. It is safe for dogs and there aren’t any side effects.
Antioxidants slow the aging process and boost the immune system by fighting free radical damage.
The supplements support what your dog is already getting through a healthy and balanced diet.
Essential Fatty Acids
Omega-3 and omega-6 supplements improve the overall condition of your pet’s skin and coat. As a dog gets older skin conditions can flare up including dry and itchy skin. Its coat can also be prone to getting dull. These are great supplements to help balance your homemade dog food, which can help with these problems and also alleviate some allergies.
Long-chain polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids like Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) work wonders for senior dogs suffering from arthritis or cognition problems. These fatty acids are extracted from fish oil, krill oil and algae oil.
Probiotics and Prebiotics
Probiotics and Prebiotics can be beneficial for dogs of all ages to help with digestion and boost the immune system. For older dogs, they may need the help of supplements to keep their body running efficiently and smoothly.
Buy a probiotic supplement that contains a range of strains of beneficial bacteria. Combine with a prebiotic supplement for optimal health. If you are unsure which product or brand to purchase, ask your vet for advice.
You can find all of these supplements online and at your pet store or a local vet. Seek out the advice of the professionals and also ask your friends and family about what supplements they recommend if they are also senior dog owners.
How to introduce supplements to your dog’s diet
Add new supplements gradually so you can easily monitor the effects. Many supplements come in several forms including liquid, powers or chewable pills. So you can give your dog its supplements without too much hassle and effort once you find which method works best for your pooch.
When you introduce a new supplement to your dog’s diet watch carefully for positive signs. You might be looking for specific symptoms to disappear. If your dog was limping around the living room last week and now is walking with a little more bounce in its paws you can be sure the supplements have kicked in and are working.
Other times the effects of supplements can be more subtle. Keep an eye on the condition of your dog’s coat, energy levels and mood. You can quickly see a difference in the activeness of your old canine but for the coat condition, it can take some time. So you need to give the supplements time to work and introduce them slowly to be sure which ones are working for your pooch.
Not all supplements will work for all dogs. Sometimes a combination of certain supplements can be the best course of action for certain dogs.
The quality of supplements can vary. Check labels carefully and try to invest in the best quality supplements possible.
Other signs of old age
Like humans, the symptoms that can come with old age are many. You or your dog could begin to show symptoms for health issues you haven’t even heard about. Here are some more signs your dog is entering its senior years.
- gum and teeth issues including infections
- less energy
- moodiness or lethargy
- less appetite
- seeming disorientated or without clear direction
- weight gain or weight loss
- loss of hearing
For older dogs supplements can improve their quality of life and give them an energy boost that can be noticeable very quickly. Even if your senior pooch isn’t showing signs of aging the supplements can be useful in prolonging the onset of old-age health issues including cancer and liver failure which is common in older dogs.