Benefits of Vitamin C For Dogs

The following information details the use of vitamin C for dogs, including dosage, safety information and side effects.

A diet rich with vitamin C is necessary for our survival as humans. A lack of this substance in a human diet can lead to all sorts of conditions including scurvy, a very serious ailment that could even result in fatality if the case was particularly severe. However, dogs differ from us humans in this regard, as their bodies naturally produce this vitamin in large quantities without a need for outside supplementation. If you check the contents of most dog food put out on the market today you will notice a distinct lack of vitamin C in almost all cases (either completely, or just a very minimal amount). However, despite this fact, there may still be a few practical applications of giving vitamin C to your pet. Supplementation during times of canine illness and stress, details of which can be found lower down this page. Supplementation has also been found in studies to increase resistance to illness and recovery times in dogs.

Vitamin C dosage for dogs

A realistic dosage of vitamin C for dogs would be around 18 mg per pound to be administered once every 24 hours. This would equal 540 mg a day for a 30 pound dog (18 x 30). You should run it through with your vet before using the substance, especially if you are attempting to use the vitamin to combat certain symptoms your dog is displaying, as sometimes unwanted symptoms can signal bigger problems.

Is vitamin C safe for dogs?

Vitamin C is a safe substance for use in dogs, as they naturally produce it on their own their bodies very rarely react poorly to the vitamin except in cases of extreme overdose. However, it would be almost impossible to administer dangerously high amounts by accident.

Safety precautions:

  • Do not administer dangerously high amounts to your pet
  • Consult with a vet before using the substance to discuss potential benefits and dosages
  • Have your dog checked over in case symptoms you want to combat with the vitamin are being caused by a more serious problem

Vitamin C is very safe for use in dogs and as such you are very unlikely to encounter problems when giving this substance to your pet. However, a word of warning is that if you are planning on giving the vitamin to your dog to combat certain symptoms, you should always seek a professional diagnosis of the issue first. Sometimes when our dog appears to be falling ill with unusual frequency we try to combat this problem without considering the possibility that the susceptibility to illness may be a result of a serious problem. Many serious illnesses can result in a poorly functioning immune system, and you should treat such a problem as a symptom not just a cause. However, there are also many possible causes that are less malignant, such as stress. A veterinary diagnosis should clear up any confusion and rule out the possibility of other underlying problems.

Uses of vitamin C for dogs

Vitamin C supplementation in dogs may be useful for combating:

  • Stress
  • Illness
  • Poorly functioning immune system
  • Skin conditions

Stress is the most notable and common cause of low vitamin C blood levels in dogs. Stress can be caused by a variety of things such as moving house, arguments between family members, physical exertion, injuries (including cosmetic procedures such as ear cropping) and illness. Stress may also result in other unwanted symptoms such as insomnia. If your dog appears to be suffering with insomnia, you may choose to try melatonin for dogs as an addition supplement. Melatonin just like vitamin C is considered very safe for canine use.

Side effects of giving vitamin C to your dog

Unless you administer dangerously high amounts, which would be difficult to do by accident, chances of serious side effects are rare. Side effects of overdose includes jaundice, back pain, itching, fever, pain in the abdomen, nausea/vomiting, urine retention, flushing and headache. If you suspect an overdose you should seek immediate veterinary care.

Information about vitamin C for stressed or ill dogs
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Vitamin C For Dogs