by Emily Buchanan
It’s not just people that are living longer, its pooches too. It seems pet owners are more conscious than ever of the well being of their beloved pups and this is reflected by the value of the pet care industry and the apparent longevity of the world’s best kept pups.
“Just as the average life expectancy for people keeps reaching closer to the century mark,” writes Martha Smith, director of veterinary services at Boston’s Animal Rescue League, “we’ll continue to see the same parallels in our pet population,” It seems that the carefully considered choices we are making for our pets (and the amount of money we are willing to spend) is making them healthier and happier pups than ever before. In 2011, Americans spent over $50 billion on their pets. Yes, fifty billion dollars and this figure is at an all-time high!
Not to mention the fact that there’s now a plethora of (expensive) services available for pampered pooches, from pet hotels to deep conditioning treatments. Recently, even fur dyeing has become popular (if not extremely controversial!) meaning darling dogs can be transformed into cartoon caricatures of themselves.
But whatever your opinion of this unusual practice, progressions in the pet care market mean there’s a wide variety of supplements and medicines now available that can help maintain your dog’s natural optimum vitality – without the use of dyes or treatments! And, evidently, pet owners are buying these products by the bucket load- keen to try anything that might improve the health of their cherished furry friends.
However, before considering these kinds of remedies, it’s very important to note this: if a dog already has a balanced diet and is getting all of the vitamins and minerals they need, it can be harmful to feed them supplements. For example, too much calcium can cause problems with their bones (just as it would with humans) and too much vitamin A can cause untold issues with joint pain and dehydration. To avoid confusion, always remember the golden rule: check with your vet before you give your dog any form of supplement. As long as you bear that in mind, supplements can have a very useful and beneficial impact on your dog’s progress.
Supplements vary from simple vitamins to complex medications designed to target a specific problem. Usually, vitamin supplements are household pills that humans can consume, from Cod Liver Oil to herbal remedies. Whilst these supplements can have a benefit to a dogs overall health, they don’t tend to tackle specific problems. As your pet gets older, these specific problems may start to hinder their quality of life and at this point, it’s time to get professional advice and seek out proper medication. This piece of advice rings true throughout your dog’s life – if in doubt, get help.
As the encouraging figures suggest, progressions in the medicinal market mean pet dogs are enjoying longer and healthier lives than ever before. With the correct understanding and some sound advice, pet owners are providing their pups with the latest in advanced supplements. This diligent concern over a pet’s well-being is fantastic news and just goes to show, in the twenty-first century, a dog truly is part of the family.
So, with an abundantly competitive market, is it time you started thinking about dog supplements?
Emily Buchanan is a writer working for Animed Direct, a company that’s cutting the cost of pet care. She has two Golden Labradors called Ash and Logan and a cat called Igby.