Preventive medicine is now a large area of focus for both people and our pets, with an emphasis as well on more “natural” ways of keeping healthy. From organic food to natural supplements, everyone is trying to reduce the amount of synthetic chemicals in their food.

We believe that preventive medicine is the cornerstone of a long and happy life with our pets, and we can accomplish this with the assistance of nutraceuticals. Nutraceuticals are defined as products isolated from food, that have physiological benefits or protection against chronic disease. In veterinary medicine, nutraceuticals are available for joint, gastrointestinal, skin, immune system, and behavioural health.

An example of a commonly used product is glucosamine for joint maintenance. Glucosamine is naturally found in the exoskeletons of crustaceans and arthropods, animal bones, bone marrow, and some fungi. It is the most common dietary supplement taken by people to aid in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Because a large population of our pets also suffer from arthritis, we have found a positive benefit in the prevention and treatment of those at risk or affected. The formulations designed for our pets are focused on maximum bioavailability (absorption and availability for use by the body), palatability, and efficacy.

Another excellent example of a nutraceutical is Silybin, the active ingredient found naturally in the milk thistle plant. This extract is used extensively to protect the liver from oxidative damage (e.g. from toxins, mushroom poisoning, drugs, or chemotherapy). Milk thistle therefore plays a huge role in the prevention and treatment of any liver disorders, in both human and veterinary medicine.

Many more nutraceuticals exist that assist in improving our pets’ health, ranging from products that decrease plaque on teeth to pheremones that help keep cats relaxed. Please make sure to ask us the next time you’re in if there is a more natural product that can help your pet!

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