Vitamin D for Dogs

When considering good nutrition for your dog, vitamin D is something to think about. When your dog has a good, healthy amount of the vitamin in its system, it can be very beneficial. 

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a vitamin that is kept in the fatty tissues of the body and the liver. It helps promote bone health and muscle and nerve control. It also helps regulate calcium in the kidneys and to keep the calcium level throughout your dog's entire body at a good level. 

How to Obtain Vitamin D

There are several different ways to administer this vitamin to your dog. There are dairy products, fish liver oil and even sunlight (for the upper skin layers). Another way is by choosing a good, balanced kind of dog food. Many dry dog foods come with a good amount of vitamins. Check the labels when you go to buy some and see if your brand has what your dog needs.

Of course, you can always purchase vitamin D supplements to give to your dog if he or she is not obtaining enough of it through other means. 

It is suggested that your dog receive 227 IU per pound of dry dog food that it consumes on a daily basis. 

Avoid Toxic Amounts of Vitamin D

Yes. A toxic dose of this vitamin is considered to be 2272 IU per pound of dry dog food. It is very important that you make certain that your dog does not get too much Vitamin D, since this upsets the balance of your dog's health and can make it very sick with lasting consequences. 

Symptoms of Vitamin D Overdose

There are a multitude of symptoms for this. They include: 

  • Diarrhea
  • Anorexia
  • Depression
  • Vomiting
  • Abnormal amounts of urinating and drinking
  • Bleeding
  • Bone pain
  • Limping
  • Abnormal heart rhythms

Vitamin D Toxicity Treatment

If a toxic-level dose of the vitamin is caught immediately, vomiting can be used to cleanse the system or activated charcoal can be administered to help get it out. 

In other cases, intravenous fluids will be administered, along with electrolyte therapy. If your dog has developed serious problems as a result of the toxicity—such as kidney failure—then more advanced, complicated treatment may be required. 

In either case, until your dog is back at a normal, healthy level for the vitamin, you will need to discontinue whatever means you have been using to give your dog its amount of vitamin. 

This is also possible, though this is not as likely as having too much. If your dog has a deficiency, this will materialize itself in the form of bad tooth formation and weak bones. The treatment for this, of course, is to start giving your dog the vitamins that he needs to be as healthy as possible.