The Top Causes of Your Dog’s Digestive Problems

Every dog owner knows how sensitive a dog’s stomach can be, and it’s never fun dealing with a dog suffering from digestive problems. From acute discomfort caused by your dog’s predilection for table scraps to virus-related digestive disorders, here’s what you need to know about your dog’s digestion and how to improve it with dog digestive problem remedies.

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Causes

There are many factors that could affect your pup’s digestive system, but here are some of the top causes of discomfort:

  • Eating All The Things – Dogs don’t usually discriminate when it comes to eating things that seem delicious to them. Whether it’s garbage, another animal’s droppings or a plastic food container that smells like chicken, this reckless consumption is the most common cause of digestive upset. Vomiting, constipation, incessant gas and diarrhea can all be the result of your dog’s indiscriminate binges.
  • Viruses, Parasites or Bacteria – More concerning is when your dog hasn’t been nosing through the garbage before the digestive problems occur. Occasionally these symptoms are caused by viruses like parvovirus or coronavirus and parasites or worms which are all contracted by eating an infected dog’s feces. These conditions can be scary, but they are treatable, so if you suspect your dog has been exposed to them, be sure to bring him to the vet right away. Another less common cause of digestive disorder is bacteria from food poisoning, such as salmonella, E. coli, campylobacter and clostridia. These conditions can lead to extreme dehydration and even be passed on to humans, so again, consult your vet immediately if you suspect food poisoning.
  • Pancreatitis – This condition occurs when your dog’s pancreas is unable to function properly from medications, an inflamed digestive gland or high-fat foods. The inflammation disrupts the flow of enzymes to the digestive tract and can be very damaging if left untreated long-term. It can, however, be treated without any side effects.

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Symptoms

Your dog may have acute or severe digestive disorder if any of the following symptoms occur:

  • Vomiting, gas and diarrhea – These are the most common signs of digestive upset, and there’s no need to panic right away if you see these symptoms. If these symptoms continue for longer than 24 hours or are accompanied by any of the other symptoms, monitor closely and consult your vet.
  • Loss or change of appetite – If your dog is uninterested in food or water, it could implicate digestive problems. It’s possible that food is making him feel nauseous, but if your pup refuses to drink water, watch very carefully as dehydration can be extremely dangerous for dogs. You can try to entice your dog into drinking or eating by adding K9 Power’s Go Dog supplement to his water or K9 Power’s Digest Forte supplement to his food. The smell and taste will motivate him to try to eat/drink.
  • Bloated belly – A bloated abdominal area is a sign that your dog’s digestive system is not functioning properly, so be sure to pay attention to your dog’s belly. If you notice him arching his back or an usually hard abdomen, call your vet immediately.
  • Colitis – Colitis, or irritation of the colon, is a pretty common side effect of digestive disruption. Be sure to monitor your pup when he goes out and note if he is rubbing his bum on the floor.
  • Constipation – If your dog is straining but is unable to defecate, it is likely a sign that he has eaten something that is difficult to digest. This is not necessarily a product of a gastrointestinal condition, however, if your dog seems to be constipated for a couple days, consult your vet for advice.

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Treatments

There’s really not much you can do about diarrhea besides let it run its course and cross your fingers for no accidents along the way, but here are some things you should keep in mind when your dog’s digestive system is acting up.

  • Provide Water – As mentioned earlier, dehydration can be incredibly dangerous to dogs, so be sure to provide plenty of water for your dog at all times. If you notice that the water level doesn’t seem to be going down throughout the day, add K9 Power’s Go Dog water-soluble hydration supplement to his water. The smell and taste will entice him to drink and the hydrating formula will help replace nutrients he’s been missing out on.
  • Digest Forte – To improve your dog’s digestive system and reduce the amount of gas he emits on a regular basis, add K9POWER’s Digest Forte supplement to his food once a day. The formula provides the necessary enzymes and nutrients for healthy digestion while normalizing your dog’s stool. Plus, it’s made with real chicken, so he will love the taste.
  • Therapeutic food – If the diarrhea continues, consult your vet and try feeding him a therapeutic dog food made for this purpose. These types of foods are sold at vet offices, and after a couple days try slowly reintroducing your dog’s normal food. Avoid feeding your pup any human food at this time.
  • Vet-prescribed medications – For chronic or more serious digestive disorders, your vet may prescribe oral steroids or other medications to treat the symptoms. Always consult your veterinarian before giving your dog any type of medication.

This is Why Your Dog is So Gassy

Every dog parent knows that sometimes pups just plain stink. Whether they decided to roll around in a dead fish, eat the trash or just plain can’t stop emitting noxious fumes from their behinds, dog parenting definitely does not always smell like roses. While we can’t give you much advice on reversing your pup’s instinct to disguise their smell by rolling around in mud, we can help with the whole “Who cut the cheese?” ordeal. Here’s what your dog’s gas is saying about them and some info on what to give your dog for gas.

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Breed

First of all, just know that certain breeds are gassier than others, so smelling lots of gas from your dog might just be a normal everyday occurrence depending on your pup’s heritage. Many of these types of dogs have sensitive stomachs or eat too fast (and swallow too much air as a result), resulting in some reek after-dinner effects. If you can’t stand a little foul odor every now and again, you might want to reconsider adopting the following breeds:

  • Bulldogs
  • German Shepherds
  • Mastiffs
  • Boxers
  • Labrador Retrievers

shutterstock_254080660Digestion

The most common cause of chronic flatulence is a diet that is difficult for your dog to digest. When the ingredients in many low-quality dog food brands are not fully digested, they are left to ferment in the colon, creating lots of smelly gas, which is unpleasant for us and uncomfortable for them. Please note, however, that often when switching your dog from one type of food to another it creates some initial digestive discomfort that levels off. Do not be alarmed if your dog becomes gassy after the first couple feedings of a new-to-him brand of food. Some of the hard-to-digest ingredients to avoid are:

  • Soy products
  • Dairy products
  • High-fat foods
  • Spicy foods
  • Beans
  • Peas
  • Artificial flavoring
  • Preservatives

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Prevention

The best gassy dog remedy and way to prevent flatulence in your pup is to feed them a high quality dog food that doesn’t contain any of the triggering ingredients listed above. It’s also important to resist feeding your pooch table scraps or letting them get into other dogs’ foods. Additionally, adding K9POWER Digest Forte supplement can not only help avoid gas and provide some dog gas relief, but with consistent use could even improve the smell of your dog’s feces (seriously). Our natural formula is a multi-digestive nutritional supplement that contains enzymes and direct-fed microbials (probiotics), working as gas medicine for dogs, to support stomach and intestinal tract health while normalizing stool even when switching diets. With proper digestion, your dog not only smells better, but they are better equipped to absorb essential nutrients. The pest part? Your dog will love eating his food when you add Digest Forte to it since it’s packed full of real meat flavors like chicken and beef.

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Symptom

If your dog’s flatulence becomes much more persistent out of nowhere without any known changes to diet or it continues long after you first switch foods, it could indicate that your dog has an allergy or condition that should be checked out. If it does not improve after trying K9POWER Digest Forte for several weeks, consult your veterinarian to make sure it’s nothing more serious than a little gas.

15 Surprising Foods to Never Feed Your Dog

Many dog owners are incredibly cautious about what they feed their fur-children, but unless you grew up with dogs or do your research, there are bound to be some surprising foods not to feed dogs along the way. It’s hard to resist the big puppy dog eyes that beg for a taste of whatever you’re eating at any given time, but when it comes to the following 15 foods you should never give your dog, you must learn to say no for your dog’s own benefit. Be sure to explain this to guests at dinner parties as well so they don’t end up sneaking grilled onions or macadamia nuts to your dogs under the table.

shutterstock_496308388Xylitol

The artificial sweetener found in sugar-free sodas, gum and candy can make your pup’s blood sugar drop drastically leading to liver failure. Your dog probably loves the taste and smell of sweet things, even the artificially sweet kind, so be sure to keep the diet sweets far out of Fido’s reach.

shutterstock_400051756Avocado

Avocados, while super healthy for humans, may contain a toxin called persin that can be harmful to dogs. Not all species contain the toxin, but persin is present in the skin, core and meat of certain types of avocado, so be extra careful if you grow avocados in the backyard. Don’t panic if your dog gets a hold of a little piece that jumps off your cutting board though!

shutterstock_254066752Alcohol

It should be a no-brainer that alcohol shouldn’t be fed to dogs, but since pups love the taste of wine and beer, it’s worth mentioning that it can be highly toxic. Alcohol affects the liver and brain of dogs just like it does humans, but it takes a lot less to affect them. Avoid feeding your dog dishes that were cooked with alcohol as well.

shutterstock_401767609Onions

Onions contain a toxin called thiosulphate that can damage your dog’s red blood cells leading to hemolytic anemia. Make sure any leftovers you feed your pup is completely free of onions.

shutterstock_530521633Caffeine

Dogs are far more sensitive to the effects of caffeine than humans are, so it’s important to keep them out of your coffee grounds, used tea bags and more. If your dog drinks a little bit out of your coffee cup, it won’t be enough to hurt him, but if he gets a hold of a few caffeine pills the result could be fatal.

shutterstock_36556129Grapes and Raisins

There is still some mystery as to what exactly it is in grapes that is so toxic to dogs, but even ingesting a small amount can lead to sudden kidney failure, characterized by anuria or the inability to urinate as well as many other awful side effects. Never feed grapes or raisins to your dogs!

shutterstock_232234891Macadamia Nuts

Again, it is unknown why but only in dogs macadamia nuts can lead to weakness, difficulty walking especially in the hind legs, hyperthermia, depression and more.

shutterstock_441995200Cooked Bones

It seems counterintuitive to keep a bone away from your dog, but cooked bones can splinter in your dog’s throat which can be highly damaging to your pup and even become a choking hazard.

shutterstock_457244119Fat Trimmings

High fat foods like bacon, the fat trimmings from your steak or baked chicken skin can cause pancreatitis in dogs leading to severe digestive problems.

shutterstock_251490646Yeast Dough

If you do a lot of baking and give in to your dog’s begging eyes, stay away from unbaked dough that contains yeast. The yeast rises in your dog’s stomach and ferments which can lead to alcohol poisoning.

shutterstock_405193552Nutmeg, Baking Powder & Soda

On the subject of baking, do not feed your dogs any baked goods that contain a lot of nutmeg, baking powder or baking soda. These can all be toxic to dogs.

shutterstock_296920706Chocolate

While most people already know that chocolate is poisonous to dogs, they may not realize why. The theobromine found in chocolate can lead to seizures, muscle tremors and irregular heartbeat when eaten in large amounts.

shutterstock_296250110Dairy Products

Many dogs, like some humans, are lactose intolerant meaning they don’t have the enzymes to break down the sugars found in cow’s milk. This means feeding your dog cheese or other dairy products could lead to bloating, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal discomfort.

shutterstock_262227140Apple Core

Traces of cyanide are found in apple seeds, which are toxic to humans too, but since dogs are smaller and more likely to be indiscriminate about eating the sides/cores of things, they are more dangerous to our K9 friends.

shutterstock_456183400Peaches and Plums

Pits are a choking hazard to dogs and they contain the same toxin that apple seeds have. If you chop up the peach or plum and discard the pits, however, your dog will love the sweet treat.

Interview with Dr. Sharon Lynch

At K9POWER, we like to stay active on social media and meet people who use and love our products in the real world. We came across Dr. Sharon Lynch when she used our hashtag #K9SUPERPOWER on Instagram, and we quickly fell in love with her beautiful and extremely talented dog Maise. Dr. Lynch is a veterinarian located in MA, and Maise is a  labrador who wins dock diving and agility competitions on the regular. Dr. Lynch agreed to do an interview with us to help us learn more about how Maise uses K9POWER products to win blue ribbons (plus, we wanted to share some adorable photos of her dressed up). Read on for the full interview.

1. Tell me a little bit about yourself and your history with dogs! Where are you from? How did you become a dog lover? 

I am originally from Connecticut and currently living in Washington MA where I own a vet clinic.  Growing up in CT, we always had a dog and I was a huge animal lover – I can’t count the number of cats that “followed me home” when I was doing my paper route, or just out with my friends.  I knew I wanted to be a vet from a young age.  I went to vet school in Dublin Ireland, and was amazed at how dogs in Ireland were treated  – there were amazing working dogs and then much-loved pets.  Nutrition was always something I was really interested in, especially watching the working dogs.  I got my first dog, Phoebe, a black Labrador, my final year in vet school and she went everywhere with me, even lectures!   She was a world traveler – having been born and raised in Ireland, she moved back to the US with me a few years after vet school.  After working at two of the biggest emergency clinics in New England, I decided that I wanted to buy my own practice, and purchased Hilltowns Vet Clinic, in Washington, MA. We are located in the Berkshires of Western MA, and in my off time, I am generally hiking in the beautiful surrounding area with the dogs.
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2. Can you give me some background on your dog Maise? What is her breed, how long have you had her, how did you come up with her name, etc.?

Maise is my third Labrador – she arrived as a puppy on a snowy day in January 2012.  When Phoebe was about 7, one of my clients brought in a litter of Labrador puppies for their first vaccinations, and I fell in love with Emma, and somehow convinced her breeder to let my husband and I have her  – she was promised to another family.  She and my husband Fred soon started competing with agility.  Her breeder also competed in agility and took Fred under his wing and loved watching Emma at trials.  It was a given that we would get our next puppy from them. We began thinking about a puppy in 2011, as Phoebe turned 14 and Emma was 6.  Our breeder was having another litter in November 2011, which would be his last as he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer a year or so prior to this.  I first met Maise when she was 2 weeks old, and the rest is history.  Her full name is Case Pond’s Maise Madra Bui which loosely translates from Irish to beautiful yellow dog.  I did not take into consideration that Maise rhymes with crazy, and hence she became Maise the Leaping Lunatic!

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3. Which events does Maise compete in?

Maise competes in DockDogs, Dueling Dogs and does a little bit of disc competition as well.  We also just began doing some training for Trick Dog titles with AKC as well, and she has done some agility as well.  One of her littermates went to a family that was already competing in DockDogs and lives nearby, so we would get together at their lake house and let the two puppies play – Maise quickly learned from Trey that launching at speed into the water and swimming was the best thing in the world to do! We started competing with DockDogs when she was about a year and a half old – she refused to jump at her first competition, but since then she has never looked back!  She competes in all three disciplines in DockDogs – Big Air, Speed Retrieve, and Extreme Vertical, thus making her an IronDog.  Speed Retrieve is her absolute favorite and she loves it! She has been to World Championships the last three years in a row – 2014 for IronDog and Speed Retrieve, 2015 for IronDog and Speed Retrieve, and 2016 for Big Air, Speed Retrieve and Dueling Dogs.  She finished 6th in Class 1 finals in Dueling Dogs in November, competing against the best of the best! Dueling Dogs is the newest sport in dock diving for dogs, where two dogs go head to head and race for the bumper. Maise has truly found her love with this – she is amazing and loves the competition. We have already scheduled a few events with Dueling Dogs this summer! I started playing disc with Maise as a way to help keep her conditioned in the off season and she really seems to love it!  She had one competition last year and we are hoping to do a few this summer as well!

4. When and how did you realize she had this talent?

I started to realize how fast she was and how much she loved to swim as a puppy, and started to look for an outlet for her energy. It wasn’t until she was about 2 and started competing for her second season of DockDogs that I realized that she was a big jumper and a fast swimmer. I love to joke that she can keep up with the big boys in the water as she is a little Labrador – only about 53 lbs! She amazes me every day with her accomplishments – she gives me her heart and soul in anything we do!
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5. Which K9POWER products does Maise use?

Maise currently gets Show Stopper and Super Fuel every day and Go Dog after a workout and at events (so almost every day except in the winter!)

6. How does she like the products she has tried? 

She loves her food with Show Stopper and Super FuelGo Dog is expected/ demanded  when she comes in from a workout or off the treadmill – she actually runs to the counter where it is kept until we make her “Juice” – I mix Go Dog with water and a handful of kibble for her.
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7. Have you seen differences in her performance, mood, coat, etc. in times when she has and hasn’t been using these products? Which ones?

We started using Go Dog at events in the summer as she seemed to be getting tired after a couple of jumps in the heat.  She seems to have much more energy during competition and it takes her less time to recover after a weekend on the dock – she used to be tired for a couple of days after an event.  She is no longer tired after events and is ready for more play the next day.  As I was pleased with how she was doing with the Go Dog, I started looking at Super Fuel – she has improved dramatically since I started giving it to her – her average jump went from 18 feet to almost 22! Her Speed Retrieve times dropped by 0.5 seconds as well. She has developed muscles that are comparable to a well trained intact male dog! The Show Stopper seems to help with her coat and I have always committed to giving the Omega 3 and 6’s to my dogs for healthy immune systems and recovery from exercise.

8. How did you hear about K9POWER nutritional supplements? 

I started researching electrolyte supplements after trying a sample of a different company’s product.  Go Dog seemed to be the best out there and Maise loves the taste. Seeing the results of this with her, it seemed like a natural progression to look at the other supplements made by K9POWER!
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9. What’s a funny Maise story? 

Maise is a really silly dog, so finding one story is hard.  We did pick her as a baby as she was the fattest, laziest puppy in the litter! The litter was purposely bred to be agility dogs, so we knew they were going to be fun active dogs, just had no idea how much of a lunatic she was going to be!  Her littermates are all just as active, but I think she takes the cake in terms of drive and desire to work.  All of the puppies in her litter compete in numerous sports!  Another funny story occurred at an event a couple of years ago – I was packing up the car and had the trunk open along with the door.  I asked her to get in the car – she hopped into the trunk and sat there almost laughing! She loves to go visit our chickens and kisses them all on the head – needless to say, they are not that impressed!
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10. Does Maise have any brothers or sisters? And do they use K9POWER products too?

We have two other dogs Emma and Scout.  Emma is almost 13 and  a black Labrador.  She currently gets Show Stopper and loves it.  She has a fantastic coat and looks great.  She also tends to have some seasonal allergies and her itching has drastically improved in the summer since being on it.  She also jumps a bit with DockDogs and will get some Go Dog in the summer at events if it is really hot!  At her age, she is in great health and still loves jumping and competing in agility and although not a huge jumper, she is a crowd pleaser as she has so much fun playing on the dock.   Scout is a 2 year old Belgian Malinois that we rescued last summer – we became foster failures with him.  He came to us with some major health problems and we agreed to foster him in the clinic for treatment, then fell in love with the crazy boy! He had both heart-worm disease and a horrendous injury to one of his back legs, where he was missing a huge amount of skin.  I started him on Show Stopper right away and swear it has helped with the healing of his leg – he now has a scar, but his coat looks amazing and the scar is really only a fraction of what it should be given his injury!  He is going to start training for DockDogs and Disc – fingers crossed he will be a big jumper like his sister!  Once we start training with him this spring, he will be on the same regimen as Maise, getting Super Fuel and Go Dog regularly.  He is currently in obedience classes and loving Rally.  He also had some major fear issues with people, so he is a work in progress and really a great fit in our house!

11. What does Maise love to do when she’s not winning blue ribbons? 

Maise’s favorite thing to do when not competing is to retrieve – anything, anywhere, anytime – be it a bumper, a ball, a Frisbee – if there is water involved, that is even better! She really loves to play baseball – she drops the ball at your feet, turns around and waits for the home run which she then retrieves at full speed!  I keep trying to get the Red Sox to watch some footage…  She also loves working out on Fit Paws equipment and learning new tricks!

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12. We know Maise loves to dress up! What would you say is her best costume she’s worn so far?

Maise will pretty much wear anything I ask her too – I love her Red Sox jersey, she was a turtle for Halloween this year.  She has an ER Vet costume, a princess costume, a pirate costume!  She jumps in a supergirl suit and cape at Dockdogs, along with a couple other suits – her first one has a pancreatic cancer ribbon in honor of her breeder.  I have to say that my favorite was probably Halloween in 2015 where she went Trick or Treating with my nephew, who was 11 months old – she was a raptor and he was a triceratops!  We somehow didn’t get pictures of them together!
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13. Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Maise is just the best little yellow dog!  I can’t say enough good about her and what a great dog she is!  She is a great ambassador for dogs and dog sports and loves to be out and about. She has been amazing with teaching Scout how to behave in public and boosting his confidence.  She makes me smile every day and my life is better because of her!
Thank you so much for sharing with us, Dr. Lynch. Maise is such an amazing pup, and we are so proud to provide products that help her perform her best!
If you’d like to see more of Maise’s leaping adventures on social media, follow along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Plus, if you’re interested in sharing your K9POWER experiences with us, be sure to leave your email address in the comments!

A Guide to Your Dog’s Joint Problems

Keep your dog healthy and active–recognize the symptoms of joint pain and inflammation so you can treat it right away!

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There are few things scarier than realizing your dog is in pain and not knowing where it’s coming from or how to help. Even if it’s just a thorn in his paw, a limp can send a wave of panic through any dog parent in a matter of seconds. Most of the time a little limp is nothing to worry about, but sometimes it’s an indication of joint inflammation. Unfortunately joint problems in dogs are super common, especially in larger breeds, and without treatment, they can become incredibly debilitating. Here are the facts you need to know about joint health for dogs: the risks, symptoms and treatments.

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Symptoms

Joint issues don’t just pop up overnight. Since it’s a gradual process, it’s really important to pay close attention to your pup’s behavior over time so you can identify your dog’s joint pain symptoms right away. Indication of joint inflammation may start with your furry friends taking their sweet time getting out of bed in the morning — seems innocent enough, how quickly do YOU jump out of bed when your alarm goes off? Then again, you may start to notice your dog slowing down and trying to turn back quicker than usual on walks or runs, and then you might notice them struggling to jump in or out of your car for outings. Any of these indications are troubling for older dogs, but when you see your pup limping or favoring one leg, it’s definitely time to take action. If you notice any of these symptoms in a pup under 2 years old, it may be a larger problem that should be tended to immediately.

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Causes

The most common types of K9 joint pain fall into two categories: developmental and degenerative. Developmental issues that lead to joint pain include maladies like hip or elbow dysplasia, osteochondritis dissecans or Legg-Pethes disease, where the joint is unable to develop correctly. The most common degenerative problems, however, occur when the cruciate ligaments degenerate over time. This degeneration causes instability and osteoarthritis, which is very common and luckily treatable. Other causes of joint pain include dietary and hormonal diseases, metabolic disorders and joint inflammation diseases.

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Treatment

The treatment for your dog’s joint pain will vary greatly depending on the severity, cause and advice from a trusted vet. In general, treatment plans are either surgical or non-surgical. If your vet recommends the surgical route, the procedure could be anywhere from a minimally invasive arthroscopic cleaning of a joint to a total replacement of the joint. This is not ideal, of course, so it’s important to explore your non-invasive options as well. Sometimes alleviating the pressure on your dog’s joints is as simple as cleaning up his diet and improving his health for weight management. Not only will a lighter weight decrease the pressure on his joints, but ridding his body of fat will help as it’s a source of joint inflammation. Plus, improving muscle mass/function will help protect his joints from further damage. Other common non-surgical treatments include anti-inflammatory drugs, injections, massage/physical therapy and supplements. An incredibly effective way to speed along this healing process is by enhancing your dog’s food with an all-inclusive dog supplement for inflammation like K9POWER Joint Strong.

K9POWER’s Joint Strong supplement is a formula based on wild diets designed to protect and maintain cartilage and connective tissues by providing your dog with essential nutrients to fight inflammation and improve his immune system. The delicious meat-based powder has a taste dogs love and helps fight inflammation with powerful plant antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM, CMO and hyaluronic acid. The science-backed formula and perfected ratios simplify the process (no more giving your dog four different pills a day!) and improve the quality of your furry friend’s life.You’ll love watching your dog jump, run and play without pain almost as much as he’ll love chowing down on the delicious powder in his food bowl.

Here’s Why Your Dog Food Isn’t Enough

 

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Just like people have very specific dietary needs and restrictions, your dog’s nutritional needs cannot possibly be lumped into a one-size-fits-all bag of dog chow. When it comes to properly caring for your pup’s health, supplementation is crucial and, when done correctly, can save you time and money in the long run. Here are 4 problems with dog food and why its missing the mark.

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Every Dog Is Different

Imagine forcing your gluten-intolerant sister, your peanut-allergic son and your iron-deficient BFF to all eat the same food each day. It would not be a pretty sight. They would not only be unhealthy, they’d probably be pretty angry at you too. Your furry friends are the same way. Each dog has specific needs, and if you’re simply feeding your pooch generic dog food every day, they’re missing out on crucial dietary elements.

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Not All Kibble Is Created Equal

Many high-quality kibble brands and healthy dog food do contain many of the nutrients dogs need to maintain a healthy balance. However, others are created with tons of fillers and low-grade ingredients we would never find acceptable in human food. Since the pet food industry is run by the same folks who run the human food and agriculture industry, plenty of corners are cut for the sake of saving money. Check the ingredients carefully, and note that the Association of American Feed Control Officials require that ingredients are listed in order of weight, so the most predominant ingredients will be listed first. Be sure to check the ingredients and avoid formulas that contain high amounts of:

  • Artificial ingredients including flavors, colors and preservatives
  • Meat or bone meal of an unspecified source
  • By-product meals
  • Soy and corn fillers

The best dog food formulas will contain:

  • At least one whole meat or meat meal – chicken meal, beef meal, turkey meal, etc.
  • Whole, unprocessed grains from one or more sources

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Nutrition is Key

Improper nutrition can lead to behavioral issues in addition to discomfort for your pup (think itchy skin, allergies, dull coats, joint problems and more). Not everyone has the funds to feed their dog a raw diet or cook gourmet meals, but one way to decrease costs without compromising your dog’s health is to supplement their diet with the nutrients they’re missing out on each day. With the proper vitamins, minerals and nutritional elements, all in an easy to administer formula, you end up saving money while giving your K9 friend the chance to feel fabulous.

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Your Dog’s Needs Change

Nutritional needs vary from breed to breed as well as from stages of life. Here’s a breakdown of some of the best supplements to fit your dog’s dietary needs so they feel their best at each stage of life:

  • Puppies – K9POWER Puppy Gold – For growing dogs, proper nutrition is key to allowing them to be healthy puppies and grow into strong, happy adults. Like most mammals out in the wild, pups nurse off of their mothers for many months providing them with nature’s perfect formula for growth, but traditionally we send our domesticated puppies to their new homes at just eight weeks. Weaning them off of breast milk too early certainly isn’t a death sentence, but it’s definitely not ideal. Puppy Gold is formulated just like a dog’s breast milk with bioactive proteins, micellar casein and colostrum to help them transition smoothly to a commercial diet while also providing immune system boosters like lactotransferrin to avoid infection. You can even feed the pure white powder to your sweet puppy with or without additional food.
  • Expecting Moms – K9POWER Puppy Gold – Just like puppies benefit from the Puppy Gold formula once they’re out of the womb, pregnant dogs as well as their unborn pups will reap the benefits of the formula as well. Supplement your expecting pup’s food with Puppy Gold to produce big, healthy puppies and a strong, healthy mom by supplying essential nutrition to grow puppies and produce milk without exhausting the reserves in her muscle and bone mass. Not only will she feel better and recover quickly after giving birth, but she’ll look fabulous as her coat shines throughout pregnancy.
  • Adults – K9POWER Show Stopper – Your full grown dogs may need a little extra lovin’ when it comes to their itchy skin or dull coat. That’s where the Show Stopper supplement comes in. Show Stopper is formulated with top-of-the-line human grade ingredients like coconut oil, olive oil, egg, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins C and E to make your dog’s coat shine and skin feel great. It also contains an optimized blend of fibers, digestive enzymes, prebiotics and probiotics to aid in your pup’s digestion.
  • Adults and Seniors – K9POWER Joint Strong – If your dog is super active or getting older, hip and joint pain is likely going to creep up due to inflammation, but there’s no reason to let your pup suffer or spend hundreds of dollars on various cures. Joint Strong is a miraculous supplement that eases joint inflammation with a unique blend of plant antioxidants, omega-3s, glucosamine/chondroitin/MSM/CMO and hyaluronic acid. This combination fights off free radicals, increases joint flexibility and lubrication, and helps build cartilage to keep your dog jumping, running and playing catch without pain throughout the years.
  • Seniors – K9POWER Young At Heart – As your dog ages, many of the compounds that abound in his youth decline, decreasing joint and brain function, muscle mass and cellular activity. The Young At Heart supplement is made with different nutrients for dogs, such as amino acids, vitamins, probiotics and phytonutrients, that can help reverse the effects of aging by fighting muscle loss, increasing metabolic rate, and improving joint, mental and eye health.   

 

10 Tips For Running With Your Pup

Running with your dog is a gratifying experience for you and your pup!

Pounding the pavement with your pup by your side can be an incredibly motivating and mutually beneficial activity. Dogs are made to run, and with their boundless enthusiasm, what’s not to love about a K9 running companion? The positive effects of training with your pup on both human and beast are numerous, but there are some precautionary steps you should take to ensure your partner is feeling as pumped up on endorphins as you are by the end of the workout. Here are 10 tips for running with your dog.

shutterstock_2292056231. Start Slow, Build Gradually

Not all dogs are natural born runners, but that doesn’t mean your pooch can’t complete that 5K with you! Just like it took time for you to build up your stamina, you have to let your pup go at her own pace and improve with time. If your dog has never run with you before, you should start with a 10 to 15-minute jog and increase the time by 10 minutes each week evaluating your dog during and after the workout. Slowly building your mileage together will help prevent injury to both parties! On the other hand, some dogs are sprinters to the core and have no idea how to pace themselves or even slow down enough to stay with you. Even these high energy dogs may run out of steam after a couple miles, so again, start off with a shorter distance and slowly build up to those goal distances. This takes time and patience, but with the right training (and gear), you’ll get working out with your dog down.

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2. Get The Right Leash

Training your dog to behave well on a leash is a pretty important factor to becoming successful running buddies — if he’s great on his leash when you walk, chances are he’ll transition to running pretty easily. Even if he’s not perfectly trained to stay at your side every time he’s on a leash, there is still gear you can utilize to make running easy and painless! Try using a body harness instead of a traditional collar so if he does start to pull, it doesn’t put potentially harmful pressure on his neck (which can also create eye pressure) and it encourages him to focus and not jump or pull. Be sure to use a short leash as well; the more leeway a pup has on a run, the more likely they are to trip you or passersby.

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3.  Pick a Good Route 

Once your running buddy has built up the mileage and you’re confident she can go on a longer run with you, be sure to pick a good route that doesn’t take you super far away from shelter. Any number of factors could affect your dog’s running ability, and you certainly don’t want to be stranded three miles away from your home if your dog starts to overheat, develops a limp or otherwise can’t make it all the way back.

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4. Check The Weather

Even if you’re used to running in the middle of the day with the sun beating down, take note that your dog is covered in hair and doesn’t have the cooling mechanism (AKA sweat) that we do. Your pup’s primary way of cooling off is by panting and cooling off paws, so it’s incredibly important to not expose your dog to elements he can’t handle. Remember that his paws are touching that hot concrete over and over again while your feet are protected by layers of rubber. The same goes for extremely cool temperatures as well! There are plenty of paw protecting shoes you can put on your dogs, but be sure to test them before going on a run as many dogs find these shoes very bothersome.

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5. Bring Bags!

Running jars the bowels and gets them moving, so whatever you do, don’t forget the poop bags! Watching your dog relieve herself in the middle of the sidewalk with people everywhere and no bags in sight is one of the worst feelings. You would hate to step in a stinky pile on your way to work, so be cautious so you don’t ruin someone else’s day!

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6. Doggie Water Bottles

If you’ve ever tried to get your dog to drink out of your water bottle, you know how difficult it can be, but running with a dog bowl plus water bottle plus leash is just too much unless you have a backpack. Invest in a doggie water bottle with a fold out dog bowl to make sure your pup stays hydrated during, not just before and after, your run. You could also plan your route strategically to make sure you’re hitting a dog water bowl every couple miles whether it’s a park fountain or a doggie boutique that offers free refreshments outside the shop.

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7. Extra Hydration in Heat

For extra hydration, energy and quick recovery for your pooch, try K9POWER’s Go Dog supplement. This water soluble powder contains electrolytes for dogs (the good stuff that helps you perform when you drink sports drinks), short-burst/long-range energy fuels and buffering agents that help neutralize metabolic acid (H+) build up (the stuff that slows your pup down). Go Dog acts like a dog energy drink to help keep your dog in the performance safety zone and ensure your run doesn’t include any lies-down-and-refuses-to-move stops!

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8. Pay Close Attention

Running with headphones in can definitely make a run fly by, but it’s a good idea to skip the noise cancellers, especially on the first few runs with your dog. It’s important to pay close attention to your dog as you’re running. With clear ears you’ll be able to hear any whimpering, and of course if you notice your pup limping, lying down in shade, or slowing down significantly, don’t force anything. These are all signs to take it easy and possibly go back home to avoid possible injury.

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9. Recovery Mode 

After a run, help your dog recover by letting her rest in a cool place and adding K9POWER’s Super Fuel supplement to her food. This formula is specially designed to support muscle recovery from exercise and reduce overtraining injuries as well as soreness after vigorous activities. It also has immune system support and provides optimal nutrition for dogs who are not necessarily competing in doggie muscle man competitions.

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10. Check for Fleas/Ticks

Trail running and hikes are amazing ways to bond with your pup on your jogging adventures, especially since many trails don’t require dogs to be on leash. Be sure to check your dog thoroughly after a hike for fleas and ticks, and bathe your pup if you suspect he may have been exposed to poison oak while out in nature.