What exactly is a nutritional supplement?
Nutritional supplements include a wide variety of
They can be divided into several categories:
- Essential Fatty Acids
- Amino Acids & their derivatives
- Accessory Food Factors
What does my pet really need?
In order to understand why a
patient can benefit from supplements, let's start with defining the
different levels of nutrition.
Refers to the animal's daily
intake, which should meet the daily nutritional requirements based
on guidelines by the NRC (National Research Council).
Adding nutritional supplements to
the basic diet to eliminate possible deficiencies caused by the
diet and the animal's biochemical individuality.
Involves the use of nutritional supplements in animals who
display specific health problems and disease conditions.
What is the purpose of supplements?
Just because your pet is receiving
the appropriate 'basic diet' formulated in the pet food, does not
mean that you are supplying all of the necessary vitamins and
minerals, etc. that he may need to thrive and be the healthiest
that he can be (i.e. preventative nutrition).
Now, add on top of it a medical
condition that requires additional support from the body and your
pet may require even more nutritional components in order to adapt
to a medical problem (i.e. Therapeutic nutrition).
So, the purpose of 'supplements' is
to supply additional ingredients to 'supplement' the basic diet.
Every pet's needs will be different depending on his age,
breed, lifestyle and potential medical conditions.