Vitamin E for Dogs

by Kristina de la Cal, Demand Media
    Vitamin E supplements are an important part of a healthy canine diet.

    Vitamin E supplements are an important part of a healthy canine diet.

    Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that plays a crucial role in supporting pet health. Pet food alone does not contain enough vitamin E to meet your dog’s needs. Supplementing your dog’s diet with natural vitamin E can help prevent serious health problems created by vitamin E deficiency.

    Immune System Health

    Free radicals are unstable, damaged molecules that threaten a dog’s immune system by attacking healthy cells and increasing the risk of various disorders. A powerful antioxidant like vitamin E is crucial to improving and supporting immune system health because it reduces the number of free radicals formed and prevents much of the damage that could lead to serious health problems. Vitamin E supplements included in your dog’s diet can fortify his immune system to help keep him healthy and strong for longer.

    Cardiovascular Health

    Cardiovascular health is essential to your dog's living a long and healthy life. Vitamin E strengthens the cardiovascular system and enhances cardiac health by oxygenating the blood, which improves circulation in the heart and arteries. Its ability to heal and prevent circulatory diseases like tachycardia (increased heart rate) and arteriosclerosis makes vitamin E an essential ingredient of a healthy canine diet.

    Connective Tissue Health

    Connective tissue like skin and muscles play a critical role in dog health. Vitamin E supports connective tissue health by minimizing the loss of elasticity from skin and muscles. Dogs who receive adequate vitamin E in their diets tend to have healthier skin and coats. Since vitamin E has anti-inflammatory properties, it is particularly helpful to dogs suffering from itchy skin caused by allergies.

    Other Benefits

    There is no shortage of health benefits from vitamin E. It promotes fertility, prevents cataracts, delays the aging process, regulates digestion, and supports cellular and respiratory health in dogs.

    Dosage Guidelines

    Optimal dosages of vitamin E for dogs depend on the size, age and health of the dog. Amounts between 4,000 and 6,000 IU (international units) per day are not known to have any side effects, but the general recommended dosage is 400 IU per day for small dogs and 800 IU per day for larger dogs.

    Warnings

    Certain combinations of vitamins and supplements could have counterproductive results. Always check with your veterinarian before adding any supplements to your dog’s diet, especially if your dog is already taking supplements or other medications.

    About the Author

    Kristina de la Cal is a full-time teacher who has been freelance writing since 1991. She published her first book, “Breaking up without Breaking Down," in 2007 and specializes in a variety of topics including, but not limited to, relationships and issues in education. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Florida International University.

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