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Supplements: Eenie, Meenie, Miney, NO!

How many times have you walked into the pet store thinking, “I should really get Fido some joint/coat/breathe/immune/etc supplements.” Then you walk down the isle marked Supplements to find rows on rows of a similar product by um-teen different companies. How do you know which one is the best? Can you tell by the price? Can you tell by which has the cutest dog on the label?

Well truth be told, there are as many good products as unhelpful products.  Here are some helpful tips when choosing a supplement brand.

1. Choose a product from a company that has been in the animal health pharmaceutical business for years instead of months.  It is likely that companies with a good reputation are not going to stake their reputation on manufacturing a poor-quality product for short-term sales.

2. Look for products that are backed by clinical research published in peer-reviewed veterinary journals.  Many companies report they have clinical trials but don’t have information available.

3. Look at the label and make sure all of the ingredients in the product are listed, including active, inactive, and filler ingredients.  Manufacturers that do not list all ingredients of their products likely use fillers and may not contain the labelled ingredients.  Dosing instructions should be accurate and clear, and the amount of ingredient per dose should be printed clearly on the label.

4. Look for products with clear contact information and check to see if the company you choose has veterinarians on staff to answer your questions.

 

Remember: Not all supplements are created equal and not all ingredients used in different products are created equal. There are shocking differences between the quality and safety of ingredients. Talk to your veterinarian about what brands they recommend ensuring safe and reliable products!

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