Despite the fact that dogs are more enduring and have good health, in many ways these qualities are based not only on natural data, but also on the conditions of keeping and eating. They, just like people, can get sick without getting the necessary elements, and a deficiency of vitamins leads to the appearance of avitaminosis in dogs. How can a pet recognize this condition and, most importantly, how can it be helped?
Which dogs are at risk
Veterinarians have a lot of reasons for the fact that the animal has a deficiency of vitamins. They can be associated with health, physiological characteristics, nutrition. There are a number of situations when animals become most vulnerable to various pathologies, including avitaminosis. The following categories of dogs are at risk:
- older animals;
- Dogs bearing and feeding puppies;
- growing offspring;
- pets who have had a disease or surgery;
- street dogs (especially in the winter period).
An additional source of vitamins needs a dog preparing for competitions and receiving an increased load.
Why does avitaminosis occur in dogs?
Owners of four-legged friends should know when their pet may have a deficiency of vitamins and what are its causes:
- Diseases of an infectious nature. Deficiency can develop against the background of parvovirus, coronavirus infections, plague, leptospirosis , infection with chlamydia, mycoplasma and other very often very dangerous diseases. During the fight of the immune system with a pathogenic agent, the body spends a large number of vital components and requires their replenishment, otherwise avitaminosis develops.
- Diseases of the digestive tract. These diseases provoke disruptions in the absorption of useful components in the intestinal tissues, which subsequently leads to the fact that vitamin substances are poorly absorbed. Diseases of the digestive tract suffer more often from pets kept in inappropriate conditions, whose food does not meet regulatory requirements. To avoid complications, it is recommended to consult a veterinarian or an experienced breeder about the proper feeding and keeping of the pet. In some cases, an individual diet for an animal is required.
- Taking medication against infection. In most cases, to eliminate the disease caused by pathogens, you can only use special medications. Unfortunately, most of them are not too picky, eliminating not only microbes, but also useful bacteria that produce vitamins in the body. For example, gram-negative microorganisms are responsible for the production of B vitamins, etc. To reduce side effects, the recommendations of a veterinarian should be strictly observed.
- Period of intensive growth. In small breeds this period lasts 2-3 months, in large dogs - much longer. But both these and other pets at this time requires special food and all the necessary trace elements. Otherwise, the animal will not fully develop, and the developed deviations from the norm will last for life. If the baby eats dry diets, choose a menu specially designed for puppies. With natural feeding, you may need additional vitamin complexes. On this issue it is better to consult a specialist.
- Time of sexual hunting. This is a difficult period for the animal. The dog shows remarkable physical activity and is constantly in nervous excitement. The processes occurring in the body require an increased amount of nutrients, so that the body normally functions at a given load. It is important to provide the pet with high-quality nutrition, and if necessary - with additional supplements. Especially if it is an animal that participates in breeding.
- Pregnancy, lactation. A pregnant and nursing animal needs the best possible care and nourishment. In the diet must be present vitamins, trace elements, minerals. Almost all manufacturers of quality feeds produce special food lines for dogs in the position, or feeding puppies. With natural feeding, you can buy additional supplements, not only enriching the diet, but also improving lactation. Some dogs during this period need an individual diet. Coordinate the correct and balanced menu will help the veterinarian.
If in any of the above situations, the pet began to grow poorly, gain weight, began to eat poorly, lethargy, weakness, can not conceive offspring, etc. - it is necessary to undergo examination in a veterinary clinic, possibly, these are signs of a lack of vitamins.
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"Dog's vitamins" and their deficiency
Avitaminosis is a deficit of a vitamin that has different symptoms, depending on the missing component, but therapy is in all cases the same - replenishment of the required substance.
Avitaminosis in an easy stage is called hypovitaminosis. It is not so hard to tolerate and is quite easily treated. True, this is only possible if the disease is detected in a timely manner. As a rule, not all owners are attentive and can determine pathology at the very beginning of development, allowing its progression and transition into a heavier form.
There are a number of vitamins that are vitally important for the canine organism, they include the following substances:
- Vitamin A. Deficiency leads to the fact that the dog begins to eat badly, or completely refuses to eat . He has problems with the digestive tract. For puppies, the lack of such a vitamin can lead to problems with growth, as well as pathologies associated with the replacement of teeth. The animal is sluggish, apathetic, with an extinct look. Fill the deficit in a proven way, giving the pet fish oil. In addition, this component is rich in egg yolk, liver beef, butter. If the dog suddenly emits saliva , looking at a buttered sandwich, it may be a reaction to a lack of vitamin A.
- Vitamins of group B. Components of this group (and there are many of them) are necessary for the excellent appearance of the dog. With their insufficiency, the first coat suffers, it becomes faded, lifeless, dumps into coils and begins to fall out . Also, these vitamins are involved in metabolic processes, affect the hemoglobin level. Deficiency of these substances can cause diseases of the nervous system, which are accompanied by the depletion of the animal, a violation of movements, possible convulsive attacks. Enrich the diet of the dog with these elements can be included in the menu of by-products - liver, heart, kidneys, buckwheat, eggs, dairy products.
- Vitamin C. An animal whose body lacks this element disrupts the liver and digestive tract. Deficiency manifests itself in the form of swelling of the gums and hyperemia of the oral cavity. If a person can get such a vitamin from citrus, then for a dog this is not an option. In the menu of the favorite, it is advisable to include dairy products, lettuce leaves, to chew on raw carrots. You can also add a little ascorbic acid.
- Vitamin D. This "vitamin sun" can only be produced by exposure to ultraviolet rays. Therefore, after the winter period, its deficiency arises almost all. It is worse for growing up individuals, since this substance affects the development and functioning of the musculoskeletal system. If the growing body lacks vitamin D, then the animal develops rickets, as well as various pathological conditions in bone tissues. The first symptom of avitaminosis in this case is a strange taste change - the dog begins to eat the ground, chalk. The disease requires mandatory ultraviolet irradiation and sunbathing. It is recommended to enrich the diet with salts of phosphorus, meat-and-bone meal, crushed eggshell. Vitamin D is found in eggs of chickens, liver of beef, dairy products.
- Vitamin E. This vitamin prolongs youth and affects the work of the reproductive system. Its deficiency can cause infertility. This vitamin in large quantities contains wheat and vegetable oil. If the first product is fed to the dog is problematic, then the oil can be added to the daily diet.
- Vitamin K. Blood can be called the most valuable fluid in the body, and vitamin K is responsible for its condition. If the body lacks this element, then it can be a bad coagulability of the blood. In such a situation, there is a risk for the animal to suffer from great blood loss, even when receiving a small wound. A large amount of vitamin K contains greens and fishmeal.
To avoid complications associated with avitaminosis, you should take care of a full, balanced diet of a pet. When feeding with prepared feeds, choose a quality product suitable for age, size, breed characteristics. With natural feeding, if necessary, give the dog multivitamins and include in the diet only useful foods. As in the case of other diseases, avitaminosis is easier to prevent than to try to repair the damage to the animal's body.