Puppy Basics: Keeping Your Puppy’s Skin and Coat Healthy
Puppy Basics: Keeping Your Puppy’s Skin and Coat Healthy

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Puppy Basics: Keeping Your Puppy’s Skin and Coat Healthy

Keeping your puppy’s skin and coat healthy is as easy as 1-2-omega-3. Feeding studies have shown that dogs thrive on high-quality animal proteins from chicken, fish, lamb and eggs.  IAMS™ ProActive Health™ Smart Puppy Original and other IAMS formulas are made with these highly digestible proteins, which promote excellent skin and coat condition and enhance your dog’s overall health and well-being. When your dog’s coat looks good, the rest of his body will likely be well nourished, too.

 

Learn more about two important nutrients that can maintain your puppy’s skin and coat health.

 

 

Fatty Acids Keep Your Puppy’s Skin and Coat Healthy

Fat plays a key role in keeping your puppy’s skin and coat in top condition. Fat not only provides energy, but it’s also a source of essential fatty acids that are necessary for the skin’s healthy structure. Fatty acids in the diet keep the skin moist and supple. They also contribute to a thick, lustrous and healthy coat. The lack of or imbalance of fatty acids can cause dry, scaly skin and brittle hair. A diet with vitamin-rich fish oils is vital to your puppy’s coat health and appearance.
 

Although there are many kinds of fatty acids, a few are important to coat health and appearance:
 

  • Linoleic acid is an essential omega-6 fatty acid for dogs and is necessary for healthy skin. It is found in beef, pork, chicken and some vegetable oils.
  • Omega-6 fatty acids, including linoleic acid, can be found in the fat or oils provided in ingredients such as chicken and corn in your dog's food.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids are found in cold-water fish oils and in flax. Although not essential to a dog's diet, they have been found to help manage skin and coat conditions and promote a shiny coat.
     

An appropriate balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids helps maintain your dog’s healthy skin and coat. An optimal range of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty-acid ratios is between 5:1 and 10:1 to enhance skin and coat quality and help nutritionally manage skin and coat conditions.

 

 

Natural DHA Supports Proper Brain Development

DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is a key nutrient found naturally in breast milk and is important for a baby’s neural development. And just like a baby, a puppy’s ability to learn depends on healthy brain development.
 

At 6 weeks, a puppy's brain mass is approximately 70% developed. At this stage and in the months ahead, feeding your puppy a diet rich in DHA can help support neural development. Premium puppy foods such as IAMS™ ProActive Health™ Smart Puppy provide DHA in their formulas.

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  • Your Senior Dog’s Health from 7 Years On
    Your Senior Dog’s Health from 7 Years On

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    Your Senior Dog’s Health from 7 Years On

    Keeping Your Senior Dog Healthy and Active

    It depends on the breed of dog, but your pet's senior years generally begin at age 7. Louise Murray, DVM, director of the ASPCA's Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York City and author of Vet Confidential (Ballantine, 2008), tells you what you need to know to keep your older dog spry and happy.

     

     

    Senior Dog Health: Preventive Health

    At this stage, Murray recommends taking your dog to the vet twice a year. "So much can happen to an elderly dog," she says. Your veterinarian can take blood annually to test liver and kidney functions. "Discovering problems early is extremely important," she says. Your vet can be on the lookout for conditions that often affect older dogs, such as anemia and arthritis.

     

     

    Senior Dog Health: Urination, Bowel Movements, and Appetite

    Pay attention to what might be subtle changes in your dog's habits: Is she drinking more water or urinating larger amounts? These behaviors might indicate a liver or kidney problem. Have your dog's bowel movements shifted? This could indicate a digestive issue. Diabetes or digestive problems might cause your dog to eat more but still lose weight. Knowing the dog's patterns can help the veterinarian determine a course of treatment.

     

     

    Senior Dog Health: Flea, Tick, and Heartworm Medicines

    Continue to use preventive medicines.

     

     

    Senior Dog Health: Dental Health

    Clean your dog's teeth daily. If she has tartar buildup, you might need to have her teeth professionally cleaned at your vet's office, which requires sedating your pet.

     

     

    Senior Dog Health: Exercise

    Your dog is probably less active, so steady, moderate exercise is best for her now. Don't turn her into a "weekend warrior" who, after lying around on weekdays, accompanies you on a 10-mile hike on Saturdays. This is especially hard on an older dog's joints.

     

     

    Senior Dog Health: Diet

    Your veterinarian might wish to put your dog on a senior diet, such as IAMS™ ProActive Health™ Senior Plus. These formulations contain nutrients specifically geared toward older-dog health.

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