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Fifi, medium poodle (FCI)
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since my dog definitely no longer wants to even come near any fish, her vitamin D intake has been pretty much zero for some time now (she is on a homecooked diet). So I guess I have no other choice but to give her a supplement. She has around 800 kcal/day and according to the NRC guidelines the maximum vitamin D amount per day for that amount of calories is 16 mcg (640 IU). Vitamin D supplements for dogs are not available in Serbia. There are only multi-vitamin or calcium/vit D formulations. However I am taking a supplement (actully it is a regulated drug and can be presribed by a doctor) called Vigantol drops. One drop equals 500 IU. Ingredients are: Cholecalciferol (vit D3), medium chain triglycerides. I was thinking of giving her one drop/day. Is that fine? Or perhaps one drop every other day?
 

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I would talk to your vet about it, especially since the compound you want to use is a regulated drug. You don't want legal awkwardness. I wonder if there might be a way to boost vitamin D intake through alternative animal sources. I can't imagine all dogs depended on fatty fish for their entire vitamin D intake prior to the advent of commercial dog foods. Were they getting vitamin D by scavenging eggs and the scraps of fat & organ meat discarded during animal slaughter?
 

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A starting point for more research for you...

Vitamin D in Home-Prepared Diets

While home-prepared diets may show the greatest variation in canine vitamin D levels, Dr. Howell notes that not every home-prepared diet has to be supplemented with vitamin D. “I’ll refer you back to the Tufts study,” she says. “Animals on balanced home-prepared diets may have sufficient D levels. It’s a matter of feeding foods that contain vitamin D, fostering healthy digestion, and possibly supplementing Vitamin D in a whole-food form or in a synthetic form if necessary. I worry that people may over-supplement unknowingly and cause a toxicity in their pet.”

For this reason, she recommends that owners ask their veterinarians for help with homemade diets or turn to Balance IT, a pet diet-planning website developed by a veterinary nutritionist at the University of California, Davis. Dogaware.com is another source of diet-planning information.

“I’m a big believer in animals getting their nutrients from real food,” Dr. Howell says. “Instead of supplementing with a synthetic form of vitamin D3, I think it’s worth getting some fresh foods into the diet that are good sources of D, such as salmon, liver, and eggs. It’s less likely that you will over-supplement if you give a food source of vitamin D rather than cholecalciferol, which is a high-dose synthetic form of vitamin D.

“If an animal with insufficient D levels doesn’t have adequate levels after trying food sources of D, I think it’s worth looking at digestion and then at a synthetic D supplement,” she says. “A conservative amount of synthetic D can bring an animal into the sufficient range. Some popular synthetic vitamin D supplements are from Rx Vitamins and Thorne Research. These products are liquid and easy to dose and administer to your pet. Both are available by prescription and should be monitored by your veterinarian in conjunction with the diet in order to avoid over-supplementation.”

 

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Fifi, medium poodle (FCI)
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for the posts! I didn't talk to my vet cause the only advice he could give me the last time we spoke was to feed kibble. Vets around here aren't really interested in nutrition and all they say is feed kibble, but for some reason many owners feed homecooked diets (I guess it's because of tradition). As I said there are no vitamin D supplements for dogs available in Serbia. And when I mentioned that my supplement is a regulated drug I thought that as a postive thing because with drugs the content is much more regulated, no chances of contamination and no variation in ingredients. With Vigantol I know that one drop will always have 500 IU D3 and nothing else. I guess I'll have to find another vet and ask him the same question. Thank you all!!
 

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Thank you for the posts! I didn't talk to my vet cause the only advice he could give me the last time we spoke was to feed kibble. Vets around here aren't really interested in nutrition and all they say is feed kibble, but for some reason many owners feed homecooked diets (I guess it's because of tradition). As I said there are no vitamin D supplements for dogs available in Serbia. And when I mentioned that my supplement is a regulated drug I thought that as a postive thing because with drugs the content is much more regulated, no chances of contamination and no variation in ingredients. With Vigantol I know that one drop will always have 500 IU D3 and nothing else. I guess I'll have to find another vet and ask him the same question. Thank you all!!
Ah, ok. I guess I should have been more careful about my phrasing, especially since I don't know how the medical system works in Serbia. Yes, using a regulated supplement sounds good, because you know what's in it. Using a prescription supplement is dodgy unless it was prescribed for the dog.
 

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Amazon has several multivitamins for sale, you can buy some and toss em' into your dogs food.
 
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