Are Dog Vitamins Worth It?
“What vitamins does my dog need?” 🤔
“Are dog vitamins worth it?” 🧐
“Does my dog even need vitamins?” 🤯
As a pet parent, you’ve probably pondered these questions. After all, you want your four-legged friend to live a long, healthy, happy life — and you’re willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen.
And I mean whatever it takes.
So, should you give your dog vitamins? How do I know if my dog needs vitamins? The answer is… well, it’s complicated! 🙃
First and foremost: Do Vets Recommend Vitamins for Dogs? Ask them!
When it comes to giving your dog anything, whether it’s vitamins, supplements, nutraceuticals, essential oils, or magic Instagram elixirs promising to clear your dog’s allergies, calm their anxieties, or rid them of their demons, always consult your vet first.
Dogs have unique nutritional needs. Whether or not your dog will benefit from taking vitamins will depend on several factors, including what food they’re currently eating, their age, and any underlying medical issues.
It’s crucial to talk to your vet before giving your dog any supplements, because in some cases, you may risk overdosing your dog with certain vitamins. Yep, that’s a thing.
Even something as seemingly benign as vitamins, when given in excess, can have severe medical consequences. ⚠️
Depending on the specific vitamin and amount given, side effects can range from milder issues like gastrointestinal upset to more serious effects like seizures or kidney failure (which can happen from over-supplementing with vitamin D).
In other cases, your dog might have a medical condition that could be exacerbated by certain vitamins. For example, thrombocytopenia is a blood clotting disorder that can be worsened by vitamins that thin the blood, like vitamin E.
Bottom line: Before you go playing nutrition chemist with Fido’s food, have a conversation with your vet so you can ensure that what you want to give is safe, beneficial, and actually help your dog and worth your hard-earned money!
Dog Vitamins 101
Now that we’ve gotten all of the scary stuff out of the way and established how important it is to consult your vet first, let’s go over some basics of dog vitamins.
Just like humans, dogs need certain essential vitamins and minerals for optimal health and longevity. Whether they’re getting this particular nutritional support from their food or from a supplement, it’s important to make sure all of their bases are covered.
Essential vitamins for dogs and the bodily functions they support
- Vitamin A: Supports healthy skin, vision, and immune system function
- B-Complex Vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, & B12): Supports energy, metabolism, brain function, cellular health, and hormone regulation
- Vitamin D: Supports bone and muscle health
- Vitamin E: Supports healthy skin, coat, and immune system function
- Vitamin K: Supports strong bones and healthy blood coagulation
- Choline: Supports brain, liver, and nerve function
Essential minerals for dogs
- Calcium: Supports strong bones, teeth, and muscles
- Magnesium: Supports metabolism, bone health, and neuromuscular function
- Potassium, Sodium, and Chloride: Support proper electrolyte balance and nerve function
- Phosphorus: Supports bone health
- Iron and Copper: Supports healthy blood cell function and oxygenation
- Iodine and Selenium: Supports a healthy metabolism and thyroid function
- Zinc: Supports healthy skin, vision, and immune system function
To supplement, or not to supplement?
Do dogs really need vitamin supplements? Dogs who are fed a complete and balanced diet that meets AAFCO and WSAVA standards (two organizations that set nutritional standards in pet food), usually do not need to supplement.
Why? Because these foods are already formulated with the appropriate daily dosage of vitamins and minerals. The food formulation process is typically overseen by a board-certified veterinary nutritionist, and includes a ton of clinical research before the food makes it to your local pet store or Chewy cart.
With that being said, there are times when even dogs eating a complete and balanced diet may still need to supplement. Dogs with certain deficiencies or malabsorption issues, senior pups, and/or dogs taking certain medications may benefit from vitamin supplementation. So, as always — the safe bet is to ask your vet!
What about feeding fresh dog food?
Some fresh dog foods are pre-formulated with vitamins and minerals according to AAFCO and WSAVA standards, and some are not. So, it’s super-duper important to investigate those dog food nutrition labels with all the gusto of an FBI agent. 🧐
Dogs being fed alternative diets, including homemade, vegan, or raw foods, will most likely need some form of supplementation to ensure they are getting all the proper vitamins and minerals.
Since the nutritional formulations of all these diets can vary greatly, it’s really important to have a discussion with your vet to see if there are any gaps in your dog’s diet. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer here!
The dos and don’ts of dog vitamins
Just like everything else in life, there are some basic rules to follow when it comes to giving your dog any supplements. To keep your pup in tip-top shape and save yourself an expensive carpet cleaning — or worse, an expensive trip to the veterinary ER — here are the dos and don’ts of dog vitamins:
✅ Do: Talk to your vet first to ensure your dog isn’t contra-indicated for supplementation and get vet-recommended dog vitamins
❌ Don’t: Just start supplementing
✅ Do: Use species-appropriate vitamins
❌ Don’t: Give any human-formulated vitamins
✅ Do: Look for a high-quality, science-backed, veterinary-recommended vitamin product
❌ Don’t: Use multiple of the same types of supplements at once
✅ Do: Read labels and check sources carefully before beginning supplementation
❌ Don’t: Listen to Instagram influencers and TikTok “dog gurus” with no veterinary background
Choosing the right dog vitamins for dogs
Once it’s been established that your pup will benefit from taking dog vitamins, it’s time to pick a product! And oh boy — there are SO MANY dog vitamin supplements on the market. It can get a little overwhelming, so here’s how we advise choosing the right fit:
First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure you’re buying a high-quality product that is:
- Formulated specifically for dogs
- Made in the USA from all-natural ingredients
- Bottled in an FDA- and Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)-compliant facility
Doing your due diligence here matters enormously because, like the human supplement market, the animal supplement market is largely unregulated.
Some manufacturers produce vitamins with little to no scientific research or veterinary involvement, and source cheaper, lower-quality ingredients to cut corners. Ew.
☝️In the best-case scenario there, you’re giving your dog something expensive and ineffective. And in the worst-case scenario, you don’t even know what harmful ingredients you might be giving your dog!
And now for the surprise plot twist you probably saw coming:
Paramount Pet Health Liquid Vitamins For Dogs meets all the standards above, and then some.
Our science-backed, vet-recommended formula contains all the essential vitamins and minerals your dog needs, plus the added benefits of:
- Omega Fatty Acids — to support brain, eye, and heart health, plus healthy skin and a radiant coat
- Amino Acids — for protein synthesis and bone, muscle, and organ health
- Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and MSM — to support healthy joint function and help lower inflammation
- Coenzyme Q10 — for cognitive function and heart health
- Astaxanthin and Lutein — to support vision health and help prevent age-related eye disease
- Prebiotics & Probiotics — for gut health and immune system function
Here it from a satisfied "picky dog":
Paramount Pet Health Vitamins for Dogs is the only vitamin that I can get our picky dog to take...I just put a couple teaspoons in her food dish and she will lick it clean. — David M. — Verified Buyer
If you’re thinking Sure, that’s great and all, but what good are these vitamins if my dog won’t take them?
We’ve got you covered there, too.
Dogs love our bacon-flavored liquid formula. It’s made with human-grade ingredients, and even taste-tested by humans during the production process! So if you’re tempted to take a slurp and see what all the hype is about… we won’t tell if you don’t. 🤫
It’s also easy to customize the right dose for your dog’s weight. A pump or two on top of their food, and you’re done. No chasing, pleading, trying to measure messy powder, or hiding pills in peanut butter.
Our easy-to-administer liquid formula will have your pup licking the bowl clean to get every last drop of that bacon-y goodness. But be warned: there will be bacon burps later.
The final verdict: Are dog vitamins worth it?
Tl;dr: If you’re giving the right vitamins, at the right time — then absolutely yes, they’re worth it!
A good vitamin regimen (approved by your vet, of course) can help keep your dog in optimal health so they can keep doing what they love. Like playing parkour at the park, hopping up on the couch to watch Netflix with you, and making sure the Amazon driver knows his place.
Our supplements are carefully selected and produced with scientifically proven ingredients that undergo rigorous quality control testing and standards, right here in the USA.
You’ll never find any fillers or additives in our products. We’re pet people, so we only want the best for our own pets — and yours.
Don't just take our word on it! More reviews from happy pups and parents.
♥️ These vitamins are excellent! My family has 10 dogs and every single one of them eats these vitamins with their food. We put half their serving on their breakfast and the other half on their dinner on a regular basis. They definitely smell like bacon, and you can’t go wrong when our 10 out of 10 of our pups are happy!!! ♥️ — Victoria
Our doggos LOVE THIS! The flavor must be equivalent to prime rib or King Crab... 😂
But seriously, our pups can be particular about food... yet, one serving of this on the dish, and they gobble it up!
The smell is pungent, so I worried they would turn up their noses. Instead, they dug in and think it’s delicious! It’s great quality, and we will continue buying it.
* We add it to our raw / homemade dog food to ensure a healthy balance of vitamins and minerals.
It’s important to consider supplementation if you feed kibble OR if you make your own food, but not from grass-fed / organic, non-GMO, non-antibiotic-treated meat & produce.
We highly recommend this product. — AnnieWin