Last week we discussed the role of Boron in your pet’s skeletal system. Active dogs, larger breeds, dogs recovering from injury and our senior canine companions are at a greater risk of joint issues. Calcium, Boron, Phosphorus, Zinc and Sulphur are all critical to maintaining bone and joint function and more often than not require supplementation with current diet trends.
A recent article published in petfoodindustry.com by Dr. Jennifer Adolphe PhD, M. Sc a highly respected nutritionist with extensive experience within research and development for the pet food industry, shone the light on supplementation for dogs and cats.
“The ingredient “blacklist” seems to be getting longer and longer, which as a formulator, is concerning. A current trend that compounds the issue is the move away from vitamin and mineral supplementation. This is a risky proposition as nutrient levels in ingredients are inherently variable” she continues.
“Let’s look at the Association of American Feed Controls Officials (AAFCO) Dog Food Nutrient Profiles for Growth and Reproduction and consider how to meet vitamin and mineral requirements through whole food alone.
For minerals calcium, phosphorous and zinc stand out as the greatest potential challenge. Calcium and phosphorous are present in animal protein ingredients, specifically in meat and contain significant quantities of ash (i.e., minerals). Achieving the correct ratio of these minerals, which is particularly critical for bone development , maybe challenging with ingredients alone.
Providing adequate levels of zinc from whole food ingredients is also difficult given the AAFCO minimum requirement for growth and reproduction in dogs is 100mg/kg.
Not all pets do well with all types of ingredients. Supplements allow for more options in ingredient selection because ingredients do not need to be chosen primarily based on the one or two key nutrients that provide.”
In conclusion Dr. Adolphe suggests:
“While the vitamin and minerals are vital components for the well being of pets. Instead of taking risks and eliminating them consumers need to be educated about the importance of supplements”
Always consult your vet if your dog or cat is not in tip top shape. Additionally consult your vet if you feel your pet maybe missing out or deficient in Calcium, Boron, Phosphorus, Zinc or Sulphur and a supplement may be beneficial.
Calcium: assists normal growth and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth. A dog with lower than normal levels of calcium in its blood, can suffer from hypocalcemia. Calcium plays an important role in the health of bone and teeth formation along with blood clotting, muscle contraction, vision and milk production in a bitch. Calcium is also critical in the metabolism of hormones and enzymes.
Boron: As we discussed last week boron is crucial in maintaining bone density. Boron enables calcium to bind to the bone preserving strength, density and longevity.
Phosphorus: Phosphorous and calcium work in unison. A large portion of Phosphorous is retained in the bones and teeth of dogs. Phosphorous is an essential mineral to keep bones strong and healthy.
Zinc: promotes healthy cartilage development, along with playing an acute role in the immune system, protecting the dog from infection and promoting thyroid function. Pretty important.
Sulphur: Essential for a healthy and functioning metabolism, sulphur also assists in the maintenance of healthy joints.
vetsallnatural offers a range of pet supplements designed to contain an appropriate level of supplementation if you feel your dogs diet is lacking these essential minerals.