Can I Give My Dog Calcium Supplements?

Can I Give My Dog Calcium Supplements?Giving your pet dog calcium supplements may or may not a good idea depending on the situation. This type of help is normally unnecessary, and a healthy bone structure is usually ensured, when quality canine chow is provided.

On the other hand, some dogs do require special attention in the form of calcium. Vets, in certain cases, will recommend such supplementation and often for large breeds in particular.

So, adding calcium in addition to your dog’s regular food isn’t the norm. It’s best not to complicate things since this essential dietary mineral is received when Fido is eating. Too much calcium could actually harm your pet.

Can I Give My Dog Extra Calcium? Answer: Yes, but not usually necessary

Such supplementation is easily obtained in good dog food. Special cases are another story.

It’s also true for dogs that calcium is the best defense against debilitating bone diseases. It also helps maintain strong teeth. But being deficient is almost always the result of an imbalanced canine diet. Ensure that your dog is getting nutrients and minerals from a high quality dog food if you suspect a calcium deficiency.

Calcium in Chow for Canines

So yes, you do need to see to it that your dog gets what they require including enough calcium. Never buy a low-grade or cheap chow or rely on the family’s table scraps. Instead, get the good stuff and supplement your dog’s calcium levels in that way. It’s a much more sensible option and one that your dog will appreciate over the long term.

Reasons for More Calcium

Some owners do successfully use calcium supplementation for larger-sized dogs but it remains controversial. If you wish to do that then we recommend this one. More widely agreed is that some female dogs, during pregnancy, may require additional calcium. This could be especially true if they are carrying a large litter.

Such a deficiency could show itself in a variety of ways. Common calcium deficiency symptoms include tremors, weakness and more seriously seizures. But the only other known reason for a dog needing extra calcium is if they are routinely fed an imbalanced home-made diet or low quality kibble.

Some Supplementation Dangers

Never take it upon yourself to introduce a calcium supplement into your dog’s diet. There are several serious problems that you could be exposing your dog to as a result of excess supplementation. Such health issues won’t develop for weeks or many months later and by then it could be too late. Consult with a vet first, really!

Specifically, a urinary tract infection could result because extra calcium can cause crystallization of the urine. There’s also the potential for kidney stones to form. Ironically, if you provide too much calcium, for too long, it could actually end up causing bones problems later in life such as hip dysplasia.

Evaluate Your Dog’s Diet

It’s easy! Make sure they are getting what they truly need. That, first and foremost, includes a good brand of dog food. This formulated food should have as it’s first ingredient a meat-based item. A combination of vegetables and other vitamins and minerals should be next on the label. That basically take cares of all the calcium supplements they’ll need.

This strategy will also give you peace of mind that your dog is receiving the correct calcium levels. Combine this with daily physical activity and a lot of love. Get those three things right and you won’t have to worry about supplementing their diet.

Conclusion on Calcium

The vast majority of dogs do not require added calcium because their food is formulated with a sufficient amount. Normally you shouldn’t put your dog on a calcium supplement unless there’s a confirmed and valid reason to do so. You can harm a pet by giving them too much of a good thing, like with calcium. In any case, if you believe that your dog should have it, or extra iron or any other vitamin, run it past your vet beforehand.

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Beverly March, 2016

My large German Shepard mix had a broken leg. Has a pin in it. Today we discovered a small fracture in it. Does he need extra calcium?

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Sandra May, 2015

I have a 13 year old Shih Tzu. She has a problem with her skin, her liver levels rise and has a form of crystallization in her urine. The vet has put her on a special diet of kangaroo meat, pumpkin and sweet potato. She’s been on this diet for the last 6 months and has done well. But my main concern is that she isn’t getting much calcium and we cannot change this diet. Do I need to supplement some calcium or a multivitamin to add extra vitamins to her body?

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A Different (Sandra) May, 2015

Raw chicken bones are a great natural source of calcium. Maybe you could add some chicken necks to her diet?

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Nacole December, 2014

My dog, an 8 year old long hair Chihuahua, has heart problems and has lost his appetite. I’ve tried everything including homemade food that’s grain-free and still his appetite is down. What can I give him to get the minerals he needs?

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Lynnette January, 2015

Hi Nacole. I also have a Chihuahua. You can put Pedialyte into his water or totally substitute it for his water into order to get minerals into him. My dog actually loves it. Be sure to get the clear Pedialyte, not the flavored kind. It will also keep him from getting dehydrated. To improve his appetite, you could use a liquid vitamin called Ultimate Health For Dogs. I do so by just putting a little on his food and he gobbles it up, whereas he used to be so fussy about his food. The way you do it, right from the beginning, is to not to make a big deal out of giving it to him. Just put some on his food and let it soak in. It works especially great with broiled chicken. Chihuahuas usually will eat chicken when they don’t want to eat anything else.

If you are giving him a commercial food, that’s probably what is wrong. You could try making chicken at home for him yourself and see if he will start eating it. I sometimes buy a broiled chicken and he loves it. Remove most of the skin first though.

Ultimate Health For Dogs – Liquid Dog Vitamins Formula can be found on Amazon which is where I bought it. It’s a large bottle and lasts a long time for small dogs like ours.

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Mike November, 2014

Given that even the best quality commercial dog foods contain overly high levels of carbohydrates, as cheap filler, including grains that might disagree with some dogs, a more baseline question than the calcium one is – how healthy, really, is my commercial dog food? It requires some very good and thorough research but consider homemade dog diets, with supplements, including calcium.

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Bruce October, 2014

What is a good calcium pill for dogs? I was told nearly 20 years ago when my wife and I started raising Rat Terriers that Pet-Tabs Calcium tablets were the best. So for almost 20 years, we have given all our dogs the tabs. Tonight, we just lost our 2nd female in 18 years from a seizure. We were told by 2 different vets that it was due to a lack of calcium in their bodies. We are heart broken over this, because the female we lost tonight has got a litter of 5 puppies right now that are 4 weeks old today. Someone, please help us!

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Nicole July, 2015

If you are mainly looking for calcium, grind up some eggshells and add to their food. Bake them in the oven until they’re easily crunched up. You could also use bone meal or feed them raw chicken bones. I am so sorry for the loss of your beloved pet and due to no fault of your own!

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Gina October, 2014

I want to give raw knuckle bones to my two dogs, but I’ve seen their feces turn white, i.e., too much calcium being excreted. The bones are given to keep their teeth clean and it’s fun for them too. Perhaps I should limit bone chewing to twice a week? But will this be enough?

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Winona October, 2014

The white color of their feces is calcium and small particles of bone from the bones that they are eating – not calcium from their own bodies. Let them enjoy their bones!

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Rachel October, 2014

It is, but you should be careful! I gave my 6 month old puppy a rawhide bone and he just swallowed the small end of the bone! My vet said that it is okay, but the best thing to give dogs are chew toys.

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Pena September, 2014

Do you know any vitamin or food supplement to prevent or stop cataracts in dogs?

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Tanya October, 2014

There isn’t any magic pill or vitamin that will slow the process of cataracts that I am aware of. My Siberian Husky is diabetic and his cataracts have sustained their growth. Insulin is the only medication that I know of that assists with the growth of cataracts but that’s only if the cataracts are caused by diabetes.

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Jorge July, 2013

Couple weeks ago my 5 year old dog had back pain. Somehow he got injured I believe because he is 5 pounds overweight and he jumped too high. The vet just gave him pain pills and the first thought that came to my mind is he needs calcium, even though his food is good (I think) California Natural.

I was ready to buy but I’m glad somehow I came to this page. Now I realize that is not easy just to give dogs what we think is good for us. Yes, they are correct, “owning a pet is not easy”. Thanks to the person(s) who wrote this article.

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James July, 2013

Hi Jorge. Calcium combined with quality food and daily exercise should improve your dog’s condition over time. Yes, owning a dog is definitely not easy but it’s very rewarding. Please keep us updated on your dog!

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