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Even with safe, commonly used supplements like omega-3s and glucosamine, it's best to get your vet's consent, says Sherry Sanderson, DVM, PhD, an associate professor at the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine. Your pet's doc can also help you steer clear of unapproved boosters. "Supplementing with calcium and vitamin D may increase the risk of developing orthopedic diseases," Sanderson says. Vitamin C is another potentially harmful supplement—high doses can contribute to the formation of painful bladder stones in certain dog breeds and in cats. And as convenient as it would be to administer vitamins to your pets as often as you pop one yourself, their smaller bodies and varied, commercially produced diets make determining the right amount of each ingredient tricky, says Cailin Heinze, an assistant professor at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Your best route? A vet who can suggest supplements based on your pet's specific needs.
This article was originally published by our partners at Prevention.