How Do I Boost My Dog’s Immune System?

October 20, 2022 / Dog Health / By: iPupster

A small dog with a poor immune system

As an avid dog lover, you want your pet to maintain optimum health and always feel their best.

When it comes to the immune system, what goes for the person goes for the pup!

There is nothing worse than seeing your furry friend in a lethargic and pallid state due to a weakened immune system. Your local vet is at your disposal, and you need to constantly look for ways to reinforce your dog’s immune system.

Part of boosting your pet’s immunity revolves around stopping infections before they occur

As a pet owner we ought to know the health challenges and threats that can compromise a pet’s immune system.

There are several causes of a weakened immune system in dogs. Some of these triggers can range from chronic stress, trauma, separation stress, auto immune conditions and a poor diet.

Also, a dog that doesn’t get enough exercise is prone to gaining weight and this could mark the beginning of its health woes. Notably, exercise stimulates a dog’s lymphatic system that plays a major role in reinforcing immunity.

If you want your dog to enjoy solid immunity look at incorporating the right mix of food, exercise and supplements. This is the only way to truly boost your dog's immune system.

Feeding a dog basic and nutrition-less foods isn’t enough. You need to do more than just the usual ration.

Your vet will tell you that it’s manageable as long as you keep looking for ways to boost your pet’s immune system. 

Here are 9 tips every pet owner should follow that will ensure your dog enjoys top level immunity.

1. Feed Your Dog Quality Food and Reduce Treats

Feed Your Dog Quality Food and Reduce Treats
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” ~ Hippocrates

There is an incredible amount of junk commercial dog food marketed as quality dog food. The same way junk food affects human beings it can impact on the well-being of your friendly canine too. The lack of appropriate nutrients will affect dogs to the extent where they become prone to disease and infections.

Making a dietary change may be enough to prevent or treat many infections.

Before you buy your dog food, make a point of assessing their ingredients regardless of whether you’re a pup parent novice or a seasoned dog owner.

There is so much hype surrounding dog food, and you need to spend money on reputable brands. Make sure the food is palatable and that it contains no artificial fillers or preservatives. The food should provide adequate nutrients not just processed sugars or simple carbs.

Also ensure you personalize your dog’s food based on their breed size, age, activity level, weight and other dietary needs like coat health and food intolerance.

When feeding your dog treats, keep them at a minimum and to maintain a healthy weight, choose low-calorie dog treats.

2. Keep Your Dog Well Hydrated

Keep Your Dog Well Hydrated

Your body and that of your furry friend is made up of liquids and so it’s wise to keep your dog hydrated.

Drinking water is good for their immune system since water helps carry oxygen around the body resulting in properly functioning systems and helps flush out any unwelcome toxins through urination.

Contaminated water sources are harmful for the dog, the same way they are for us humans.

You need to make sure that his/her water bowl is regularly cleaned and always full of fresh water to avoid getting sick. I am sure you will see a noticeable difference in your pet’s overall general health by simply ensuring they’re drinking enough fluids.

If your dog doesn't want to drink water here's how to trick your dog into drinking water.

3. Exercise Your Dog

Keeping your dog exercised is a must! Aside from prospering from physical and mental health benefits it can help with mood, lack of appetite, behavioral issues, socialization and longevity.

Your dog is likely to get stressed if he/she is always confined in a limited space. It takes regular walks outside their usual environment to purge all the stress.

Chronic stress can lead to an array of behavioral issues in your dog as well as a weakened immune system. If you got your pup from a dog shelter, make sure you immerse him/her in various outdoor activities to help bring back their spark and jolly self. 

4. Consider Supplementing Your Dog's Diet

Dogs that eat low-quality commercial dog foods may not be getting all the minerals and supplements they need. If your pet is a high-drive energy dog, you’ll need to ensure their diet has the optimum levels of proper nutrients and vitamins.

Even homemade diets that aren’t properly balanced can lack sufficient nutrients which may lead to reduced immunity in dogs.

In addition, the condition of your pet’s coat and skin depends on getting sufficient vitamins and minerals from their diet. For example, low-fat diets may cause an omega-6 deficit that in turn results in coarser and drier hair.

There are natural supplements you can give your dog that will replenish the lack of nutrient deficits and ultimately strengthen your buddy’s immune system like Omega 3-fatty acids which includes Flaxseed oil and fish oil supplements.

Coconut oil can help in aiding digestive health and preventing infections, whilst probiotics ensure healthy levels of digestive microorganisms in the gut.

5. Stay on Top Of Wellness Checks

You probably observe a routine where you visit your doctor for random checks. In an effort to boost your pet’ immunity, consider regular health checks too. Don’t wait for your furry friend to show signs of ill-health for you to rush to the vet.

The random visits are recommended since the vet will check and tell you whether there are impending health threats. 

Prevention is better than the cure!

6. Keep Canine Vaccinations Up-to-date

Stay on Top Of Wellness Checks

Photo by U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Clayton Lenhardt/Released

After health checks, the other factor that will keep your dog’s immunity in top form is a vaccination routine. Vaccines provide an addition buffer to the dog’s immunity.  

With canine vaccinations, you can stop pesky infections from affecting your pup’s health.

If they are not vaccinated, they can turn into worrisome health threats.

You only need to ensure that your dog is vaccinated in due time and that there is a certificate to show they’re up to date!

7. Groom Your Dog

Human beings will keep off a horde of infections causing germs, if they observe proper hygiene. The same rules apply to your beloved pet. After an adventure trip in the great outdoors, you need to groom your dog. This can range from a full body wash, hair trimming and dusting for vermin.

Your dog can pick up germs that could lead to infections.

By washing your dog with shampoo or a tick repellent formulae, you will boost its health in more ways than one.

Oh, and if you’re looking for some grooming tips, check out How do I Groom My Dog At Home

8. Make Diet Changes to Boost Immunity

Your dog’s immunity will stay on track if you are feeding it with the right foods.

Don’t stick to one type of diet. It could mean chronic nutrient deficiency or your dog can develop food intolerances.

Balance your dog meals and switch regularly and include probiotics in the mix.

Probiotics helps to combat digestive system conditions and they are a good remedy for some auto immune diseases. 

Don’t overfeed your dog with processed sugar foods.

Choose dog foods that are infused with Vitamins A and E, both known to promote immunity. Vitamin A has also been linked to improving eye and vision health. 

9. Educate Yourself

Unfortunately our dogs can’t tell us when they’re feeling under the weather. It’s up to us as pet owners to pick up on the subtle signs of illness before it becomes too serious.

With adequate knowledge about dog food nutrition and vigorous exercise it shouldn’t be a difficult task raising and nurturing a dog and beefing up their immune system. 

Empower yourself with knowledge regarding canine health to offer your pet the best overall health and have more healthy years with your best friend.

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