There are several dog vitamin myths that are still alive and well on the internet, however, they all have one thing in common; they have no evidence to support these claims.
Much like the myths that surround people as well as cats about vitamins, there are some very interesting details that any owner should know before they believe these very misleading articles.
There is virtually nothing that is not harmful to your dog if you give them in huge quantities for extended periods of time, as that is old fashioned common sense.
Here are some of the most common dog vitamin myths and some of these are actually on some very reputable pet websites.
The first one surrounds two fat soluble vitamins, vitamin A and D, and then surprising, water soluble vitamins, C as well as the entire B-complex.
The claims about the fat soluble vitamins are that these nutrients can easily cause leathery, stiffness, constipation, as well as stiffness.
There are also suggestions that they can also cause anorexia, weight loss, as well as limping in your dog.
There are also separate claims that the vitamin D that is found in fish oil supplements may harm your dog and the symptoms will be very similar.
The claims surrounding the water soluble vitamins are that the B-complex of vitamins taken in excess may cause sensitivity to light as well as what is referred to as neurotoxicity.
This is the system that recharges your dog’s nervous system.
Vitamin C toxicity is suggested to cause diarrhea as well as abdominal bloating.
Fat Soluble Vitamins
To fully understand these dog vitamin myths, it is best for any owner to start with the fat soluble vitamins A and D, and then examine the actual facts.
Fat soluble vitamins are stored in your dog’s liver as well as their fatty tissue, so there is a chance that they could cause toxicity in your dog if given in huge quantities for extended periods of time.
According to several references including the Dr. Foster and Smith website the list includes both the recommended IU/lb usage and the toxic usage.
IU/lb is the recommended dosage per day.
The recommended dosage for vitamin A is 50 IU/lb and the toxic dosage is listed at 2500 IU/lb a day.
This means that you would have to give your dog 50 times the daily recommend dosage of this vitamin every day for several months before it turns toxic.
On the other hand, if you do not supplement this nutrient in some manner and as a result, they become deficient if it, there are several bad things that will begin to surface.
These include a very poor quality of both your dog’s skin coat as well as their skin, retarded growth in puppies, as well as night blindness.
The recommended dosage of vitamin D is 5 IU/lb and the toxic quantity is 50 IU/lb.
This means that for this dog vitamin myth to be true, you would have to give your dog 10 times the recommended dosage again for several months to be even close to toxic levels.
Conversely, if your dog has a deficiency of this nutrient in their diet it could eventually lead to rickets and the improper alignment of their permanent teeth.
This is extremely important to the long term health of your dog.
Water Soluble Vitamins
Dog vitamin myths continue with water soluble vitamins and this misconception is really very interesting to point of being comical.
The reason is very simple; they are stored only in very small quantities in your dog’s body.
In fact, it is highly recommended that this class of nutrients absolutely be supplemented every day as any excessive amounts, even in huge quantities, are simply excreted from your dog’s body via their urine.
Although vitamin C may temporarily cause slight bouts of diarrhea in your dog, the benefits of this nutrient are huge.
In dogs, it is absolutely bursting to the forefront as potentially having the capability of preventing hip dysplasia in large breeds, as well as helping ease joint pains in any breed.
In fact, there have several recent studies that have shown that large quantities of vitamin C has dramatically reduced the pain of hip dysplasia in large breeds.
However, it is important to note that it did this with virtually no side effects other than initial bouts of slight diarrhea.
After your dog’s system gets used to these high quantities, this will subside very quickly.
But the list is still not complete, as it also helps with bladder infections in dogs as it helps in acidifying their urine.
By preforming this task, it also helps to kill most of the bacteria that can lead to these infections.
The dog vitamin myths surrounding the B-complex of vitamins begins with Thiamin, which is critical for the normal functions of your dog’s nerves and muscles as it converts glucose into energy.
Deficiency of this nutrient can affect their reflexes as well as their nervous system.
If the deficiency is severe enough, it can take your dog’s life and there is to this date not a single documented case of toxicity.
The next dog vitamin myth involves Niacin, which also has no toxicity ever recorded in dogs.
However, a deficiency can lead to black tongue disease, inflamed gums, as well as bloody diarrhea which can also take your dog’s life.
Next on the list is Riboflavin, also known as B-2, where a deficiency can lead to poor growth, several eye abnormalities, weakness in their limbs, and potential heart failure.
There have also never been any reported cases of toxicity with this nutrient.
Pantothenic acid and Folic acid or B-12 also have no known reported cases of toxicity, and this leaves vitamin B-6 and Biotin which are the most common of the water soluble dog vitamin myths outside of vitamin C.
A deficiency of B-6 can very easily lead to anemia, poor growth, as well as skin lesions, and if severe enough, the death of your dog.
This nutrient is considered to be essential in maintaining your dog’s complete health, and also has no known reported cases of toxicity.
The final of the dog vitamin myths involves Biotin, and it is most famous for what it does for your dog’s skin as well as their hair coat.
However, it is also absolutely essential for your dog to have normal digestion, muscle functions, and has also been linked to small litters if there is a deficiency.
If you live on a farm and your dog is known to eat or suck on raw eggs, a deficiency of Biotin can occur very rapidly as they contain an enzyme that will destroy the biotin in your dog’s body.
Toxicity from this water soluble vitamin is also considered to be virtually non-existent.
Dog vitamin myths are still alive and well on the internet.
However as these facts suggest, the quantities would have to be extremely high in the fat soluble vitamins, and toxicity is virtually impossible in water soluble vitamins.
If you use a well-known brand of liquid or powered dog vitamins twice a day and mix the suggested quantities into your dog’s food, toxicity is virtually impossible but the benefits are very real.