holistic health magazine





Should You Give Your Pet

by Dr. Roger V. Kendall, Ph.D.

article image

Holistic Health Newsletter!


newNatural Weight Loss Program recommended by The Share Guide
learn more

About Share Guide

Holistic Health Articles

Health Directory




Contact us

Do you have a
Holistic Business?
Get listed in Share Guide's Holistic Health Directory for only $9.95 per month. For more info
Click Here

Pets need vitamins and nutrients, not just to live, but to thrive. Companion animals that have all the nutrients their bodies need on a daily basis have a better chance of living longer, healthier lives. Most premium pet foods may provide adequate basic nutrition, but many do not provide everything a pet needs for optimum health.  Feeding your pet a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement along with a high quality diet helps to maintain optimal levels of key nutrients and
may prevent borderline deficiencies that can lead to illness.

Environmental, emotional, and physical stress (brought on by fatigue, age, pregnancy, or lactation) in an animal's life can contribute to vitamin and mineral deficiencies. These deficiencies, along with a poor diet, can further result in degenerative problems that may affect the heart, liver, brain and joints. Multivitamins that are balanced, comprehensive, high potency formulations provide rapid conditioning of sick or postoperative animals, and help to maintain optimum health in well pets.

A healthy digestive system is the gateway to better health and a healthy functioning gastrointestinal tract is the key that unlocks the door. The purpose of the GI system is to extract nutrients from foods, to digest nutrients into units small enough to be absorbed, and to eliminate waste products.  Digestion provides fuel and building blocks needed by the body to function properly. Sometimes a cat or dog may not be physically able to completely digest its food, which can complicate or lead to other digestive system problems.

Proper functioning of the GI system is essential to maintain good health in dogs and cats and maximize performance. Illness, injury, the use of antibiotics, and excessive stress can alter the normal microflora population, pH balance, and digestive processes in the gut leading to an improperly functioning GI tract.

Joint problems are also common in pets. Although they are not usually life threatening, malfunctioning joints can significantly reduce mobility and the quality of your pet's life. The shoulder, elbow, hip, and stifle are common sites for wear and tear, malformation, abnormal development, and excessive joint stress. Supplements that contain chondroitin sulfate, glucosamine or methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) can enhance the body's ability to support joints and connective tissues.

Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are polyunsaturated fats that the body cannot manufacture and must be obtained from foods. Essential Fatty Acids are essential because they provide the body with what it needs to manufacture cell membranes.  Cell membranes regulate the passage of materials into and out of the cell and if a membrane is damaged, the cell may not get the nutrition it needs to function properly. A lack of essential fatty acids can lead to an unhealthy skin and coat condition.

When EFA levels are inadequate a variety of conditions may develop including: hair loss, painful, swollen joints, dry, scaly skin, heart and circulatory abnormalities, liver problems, poor tissue structure, and abnormal brain development. Another function of essential fatty acids is the production of prostaglandins--hormone-like substances that regulate many of the body's functions, such as the immune response and inflammatory pathways.  Prostaglandins are produced from the Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids and they must be in proper balance to maintain optimum cellular functions. Omega 3 fatty acids such as EPA and DHA have been shown through research to control inflammation and to improve cardiovascular and brain function.

Including a high quality animal supplement along with a balanced diet increases the odds that your pets are meeting nutritional requirements to promote optimum health. Good nutrition and a sound, balanced diet are essential to the well-being of all animals. The nutritional quality of commercial pet food varies widely in sources of ingredients, biologic value, and digestibility. Dietary recommendations from the National Research Council are not based on optimum levels but focus instead on the average needs of healthy animals. The guidelines do not take into account the actual food quality, nutrient bioavailability, breed differences, and biochemical individuality of our pets. Sub-optimal nutrition over time leads to the acceleration of aging and degenerative conditions. Cells and tissues of the body compete for available nutrients and when deficiencies occur your cat or dog may not be able to obtain appropriate levels for optimum growth, repair, and performance.

Dr. Roger V. Kendall, Ph.D. has worked for over 25 years in the field of Nutritional Research and Product Development in the health field. He is currently serving as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee for NASC, National Animal Supplement Council. Visit www.mountainnaturals.com.

newNatural Quit Smoking Program recommended by The Share Guide: learn more


freeIf you liked this article, you'll love The Share Guide's
Holistic Health Newsletter. Click here to subscribe for free!

Home Health Directory Articles Index Interviews

Health Store Links About Share Guide Contact us


Avertising Info
Subscribe to magazine

Search this site

copyright 2007--The Share Guide--All rights reserved