Over the past few years, I’ve become quite the fitness fanatic. I participate in CrossFit and Cage Fitness several times a week. Though I have never enjoyed running, I’ve even begun working with a coach to improve my form. There’s only one issue: there are days when all this exercise makes my joints achy. Fortunately, my chiropractor told me about glucosamine and chondroitin, two supplements regularly recommended for the relief of joint pain. I’ve been taking them every day, and they really help. When I recently noticed that my eldest kitty, Jezebel, who is now 10 years old, seemed to be walking more slowly down the stairs in the morning, I thought a supplement might help her as well. So I talked to my vet about her symptoms and possible options. He recommended Nutramax Cosequin for Cats, a cat supplement that I now sprinkle over her food every morning.
If your pet is suffering from age-related health problems, talk to your veterinarian about vitamins and supplements that may help. Just keep the following in mind:
Dosage matters. You can buy cosequin and other pet vitamins and supplements over the counter at big box pet stores. However, it makes sense to consult your veterinarian about proper dosage. Consuming too much of certain vitamins and minerals can be dangerous for your pet, resulting in illness, or even death.
Supplements alone are not enough. They definitely won’t make up for deficiencies caused by cheap pet food. Investing in higher-quality kibble can go a long way towards easing your pet’s aches and pains. Look for brands the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) have deemed “complete and balanced”.
It doesn’t have to be difficult. Few dogs and cats enjoy taking pills. Fortunately, many pet dietary supplements are available in tasty treat form. The cosequin I give my cat comes in a tuna flavored powder that can be sprinkled over wet food.
Do you give your pets supplements for age-related issues? Have they helped with your dog or cat’s symptoms? We’d love to hear your stories in the comments.