Do Our Dogs Need Supplements?

As a pet parent, you’ll already know that a quick Google search or browse on social media will bring up countless opinions on all things dog. You’ll have likely stumbled across many of these blogs and articles yourself whenever you’ve been concerned about your dog’s health. We’ve all been there!

More recently dog supplements have become increasingly popular in the pet care community, for many different reasons. But whilst you’re doing your research, you might stumble across other information. Such as rabbit ears for natural deworming, pumpkin seeds for parasite control, products for anxiety and calming, food with certain special ingredients. The list is endless.

So, what are you meant to believe and how do you even know if what you’re reading and seeing is true? Who are the people advocating these “health” benefits and how do you know which ones are credible and factually correct?

It can be confusing and frustrating spending hours scrolling through pages of pet advice not knowing what’s right and more importantly, safe. Well, that’s where Buddycare comes in. Our qualified and registered vet nurses have been caring for dogs in vet practices, laboratories and at home for over 20 years.

We want to help keep pets healthy and happy so pet parents everywhere can enjoy more good times with their buddies. That’s why we are here to answer all your health questions and give advice based on science and first-hand experience. And we do it all for free, simply because we have a soft spot for all things fluffy. A really big one. Our mission is to improve pet wellbeing and prevent certain health issues before they become an expensive and scary problem.

Good nutrition

In theory for most dogs, if they are receiving a great quality complete diet with all the correct nutrients they need, it is a great start! It’s the same as with humans.

If you feed a child junk food and tons of sugary treats, it can affect them health wise and behaviour wise. A healthy balanced diet with a few treats here and there is the same for our dogs as it is for us and our families.  

There are so many different ways of feeding a great quality diet. Dry food, wet food, cold compressed food, raw feeding, frozen freshly prepared foods. Lots of options.  

We are not here to tell you what you should and shouldn’t feed. We want to make sure that your dog is getting the best they can get nutritionally and we will give advice on how to do this with your choice of food.   In various stages of our dogs lives they may benefit from a little extra in the form of supplements. These can be for so many different reasons.


I’m a great advocate of the magic of these. I have used them so many times with my own dogs and see the benefits. I even use them myself if I need to!

For any dog with digestive issues, whether they pick up and eat things they shouldn’t out on walks, you have a puppy with sensitive stomachs and Mr Whippy poos, pro and pre biotics can work wonders. They add some great gut bacteria into the intestines and can improve the quality of poo and make your pup feel so much better as a result. At the first sign of any squidgy poos for my dogs they will get probiotic! I always recommend the dog households I speak with to keep it in their pet cupboard because it’s so useful.

Joint supplements

There are so many of these out there on the market. How do we know which to use?

Glucosamine and chondroitin are mostly recommended for older dogs with any stiffness and mobility issues to “lubricate” the joints. However, there is so much scientific research looking at various green lipped mussel uses with Omega 3 and 6 helping to reduce inflammation and really help keep our older pups moving and happy.

Depending on your dog’s breed and size it would generally be recommended to look at joint supplements from around 8 years onwards, however for certain breeds it may be advisable to include these earlier. Always check with a veterinary professional with regards to using them if you think your dog is in pain or slowing down.

The nurses at Buddy can be a great first point of call to what discuss options and intervention may be necessary.


Stinky dog, Itchy dog, Chewing and licking feet, licking the groin area. All these can be signs of a skin issue brewing. The beauty is there are so many great products on the market for specific issues that can help your dog.  

Shampoos for bathing, mousses if bathing is a disaster waiting to happen, along with oral supplements that can really help to keep your dog’s skin in tip top condition.

Chatting with a vet nurse like myself means we can help you decide which is best suited to your dog. And of course, for you!

Behaviour and anxiety

The world can be a very stressful place for our pups at certain times of the year, or if there are any changes in the home or family. Fireworks, loud noises, new family members, moving home and trips to the vet are prime examples.

Dogs can even read facial expressions and pick up on our stress too! 

Thankfully there are so many things we can do to help them if they are showing any signs of anxiety.

Along with oral supplements to help chill out your pup, there are various different sprays, wipes, collars or diffusers that can help. It depends on the situation and what is causing the stress as to what products to use. Some have valerian compounds to help calm and others have natural pheromones. If in doubt just ask a veterinary professional for their advice.

These are the main supplements that you will see for your pets in veterinary clinics, online or in pet shops.  

It’s always a good idea to consult with a veterinary professional to help you decide which supplements are suitable for your dog. Buddycare have free online vet nurse consultations and live chat to support your pet parenting journey and answer any questions.

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