We love our dogs. We want the best for them. We believe what we are doing is right for them. Even with the best of intentions, sometimes we fail to provide optimum nutrition to our dogs. Every dog is different, what works for one dog may not work for the next. Before feeding our dogs, we need to consult with their vet and do our own research. Nutrition is an important aspect of a healthy life, including the lives of our dogs. Proper diet and nutrition are the cure for all disease. It helps to keep our dog active and happy while preventing them from various diseases associated with a poor diet.
Few common dog health issues found in dogs due to nutritional deficiencies.
Obesity is the most common nutritional deficiency among dogs. According to Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP), 2016 Survey, 54% of dogs were found obese in the United States. Obesity can be easily recognized among dogs. Dogs with obesity, usually spend lots of time lazing around and eating more than is needed by their body. This causes dogs to have shorter life span and some serious health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, chronic inflammation and arthritis We can prevent our dogs from obesity by closely paying attention to what type of ingredients are making up calorie in their food. While, it’s important to have calorie in the diet, but excess calorie can lead to obesity. Providing steady diet and regular exercise is the way we can help our dog live a healthy lifestyle.
Pancreatitis is an inflammatory disease, causing leakage of the digestive enzymes into the abdominal area. Many dogs suffer from pancreatitis when their pancreas are exposed to too many circulating fats in the blood. High-fat diets, obesity, inactive lifestyle, or side effect to a drug can cause it. It can occur in acute and chronic forms, and both may be either mild or severe. Dogs who are fed processed kibble mainly suffer from this condition because it gets the pancreas overworked and inflamed. We need to consult our dogs vet if we see the signs of pancreatitis such as loss of appetite, vomiting and abdominal pain. He will try to figure out what caused pancreatitis and recommend a treatment plan that is specific for our pet. Example: for reaction to a drug, he may take our dog off it or if it's related to diet, he may put him on a prescription food that is low in fat and easily digestible.
Diabetes is not limited to humans, it's often seen among dogs too. Researchers estimate that 1 in every 200 dogs are affected with the disease. It is often associated with poor nutrition among dogs between 4 to 14 years old. Any dog could develop diabetes, but Dachshunds, Cairn terriers, Poodles, Miniature Schnauzers, Spitz and Bichon firse are at higher risk. Durin the early stage of diabetes, we can see small behavioral changes and other signs (excessive thirst, increased urination, weight loss and change in appetite) among our dogs. If we see such signs, we need to take our dog to vet for the test, sooner it is diagnosed and treated, the higher chance for healthy life. However, if diabetes goes untreated than our dogs can develop other health problems like cataracts and urinary tract problems. Proper diet with low-fat content and a consistent exercise routine can reduce the chance of diabetes among our dogs.
According to most Vets, skin disorders are the most common conditions among dogs. An improper diet containing fatty acids, zinc and vitamins are often considered as the cause of dull coats and flaky skin. Besides, poorly formulated or stored diet, digestive problems or genetic factors also result in skin disease. The typical symptom of inflammatory skin disease is excessive scale, erythema, alopecia or poor hair growth and greasy skin. We must consult our dog’s vets and provide food containing essential nutrients that can help to prevent the skin disease.