A sleek shiny canine coat is a visual indicator of internal health. That's something all human companions of canines want for their dogs. Plus, a coat with luster is much nicer to look at and show off at the local dog park.
High Quality Diet
Its an oft-repeated phrase when it comes to answering the question of how to bring out the best in a dog, whether that be a shiny coat or more energy and stamina. However, the bottom line is that a dog's coat looks its most shiny when the dog wearing it is in his most healthy shape supported by proper nutrition. According to Pet Place, it is the proper balance of protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals that makes the difference. This is best achieved through veterinary consultation. Vet Info recommends selecting a dog food that meets the recommendations of the Association of American Feed Control Officials, which is a governing body setting nutritional standards for commercially manufactured animal foods. Web MD Healthy Dogs also recommends using a variety of protein sources rather than just one type. A dog consistently fed chicken, for instance, may not get enough nutrients necessary to maintain a healthy coat and skin.
Avoid Low-Fat Diets
Web MD describes a low-fat diet for dogs as "risky" in terms of maintaining the proper amount of essential fatty acids in your canine friend's diet. Puppies consistently fed a diet low in fat quickly develop coarse and dry hair as well as skin lesions prone to infections. This puts them at a disadvantage entering their adult years. Fish such as salmon are excellent sources of omega-6 fatty acids that provide significant support for shine and luster, according to Vet Info.
Skip Raw Eggs
While raw eggs are full of protein, thus providing the temptation to crack one or two open per day over Rover's food, the American Animal Hospital suggests it isn't a good idea for dogs. Raw eggs can contain salmonella. The egg white itself contains a protein called avidin that acts to bind the biotin in vitamin B, thus restricting its ability to aid in maintaining a dog's coat.
Yes, it is true that your pup isn't going to chow down on de-worming medication every day, but adhering to a veterinary-recommended de-worming schedule goes a long way toward helping your dog sustain a lustrous and shiny coat. Worms can sap essential nutrients from your dog, warns Pet Place. A dog with intestinal worms is sharing too much of his nutritional energy with the worms rather than dedicating it to the maintenance of his coat.
Amy M. Armstrong is a former community news journalist with more than 15 years of experience writing features and covering school districts. She has received more than 40 awards for excellence in journalism and photography. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Washington State University. Armstrong grew up on a dairy farm in western Washington and wrote agricultural news while in college.