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Do Dog and Cats Need Calcium?

What happens if your pet is calcium deficient?

While many are aware of calcium deficiency in people leading to osteoporosis The same calcium deficiency concern can also affect our pet’s well-being. Calcium, as well as phosphorus, magnesium and other trace minerals are all involved with healthy skeletal, joint and oral health

Even mild deficiencies over time can contribute to chronic degenerative disorders involving not only the structural components of our body, but major organ systems such as the heart, urinary tract, as well as enzyme reactions throughout the body.

Change your pet's diet to provide more calcium

There is even some evidence in the human literature claiming calcium deficiencies help lead to the development of kidney stones, rather than calcium excess. And while most processed commercial pet foods claim to have adequate amounts of both calcium and other minerals, I often find these minerals are usually not in an easily digestible form for pets, or in the case of some minerals, the minerals are destroyed in the processing of bagging or canning the pet food.  That’s why it’s essential to feed a fresh and minimally processed diet

Ideally this type of diet would consist of balanced homemade recipes such as those found in Donald Strombeck's book as well as Richard Pitcairn's book on natural health for dogs and cats The next best choice would be a natural and minimally processed commercial diet. However, even in balanced recipes found in the above books, it?s often common to supplement with additional calcium to insure adequate dietary needs. This becomes even more critical in pregnant or lactating animals which can rapidly become calcium deficient when fed strictly grocery or pet store quality commercial pet foods.

Recommended limited ingredient pet foods
Add supplements to provide more calcium

There are many excellent options for adding supplemental calcium to a pet's diet, including Osteoform Calcium Phosphorus for Dogs, which is wonderful for pregnant and lactating animals, along with an excellent multivitamin such as >Vitachews.  I will often use both of these supplements along with essential fatty acids such as Super Pure Omega 3 Soft Chews and Nordic Naturals Pet Cod Liver Oil for both pregnant and lactating animals.

Recommended pet products for added calcium
Pharmacy Tip

Before supplementing with calcium, speak with your veterinarian as an excess amount of calcium can be harmful to your dog or cat.