10 Whole Food Supplements for Dogs Promoting Longevity

10 Whole Food Supplements for Dogs Promoting Longevity

Note: This article on whole food supplements for dogs is a guest post from friend-of-the-blog Kimberly Gauthier as Rachel continues to enjoy her well-deserved maternity leave. Kimberly runs a great canine health site with a focus on raw-feeding, and with our recent article series on life extension for dogs we knew we wanted her to chime in on the subject. If you have a dog be sure to visit her site!

In our quest to provide our dogs with the best nutrition possible, incorporating whole food supplements into their diet can be incredibly beneficial. These supplements promote longevity and support overall health and well-being in dogs (and humans!). The following ten whole food supplements will boost your dog’s immune system, support gut health, and promote overall wellness.

whole food supplements for dogs promoting longevity

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1. Broccoli sprouts

Broccoli sprouts are a powerhouse of nutrients for dogs. They are rich in sulforaphane (10-100x more than mature broccoli), a potent antioxidant that supports the immune system and helps fight inflammation and oxidative stress (and increases longevity in animal studies). Additionally, broccoli sprouts contain fiber, vitamins, and minerals that contribute to overall dog health and longevity.

Broccoli sprouts are available at local natural grocery stores or can be homegrown using seeds, water, and a glass jar. Add a pinch to your dog’s meals (and another to your morning smoothie).

2. Organic chia seeds

Chia seeds are an excellent omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and protein source. These nutrients support healthy skin and coat, boost gut health, and help maintain a healthy weight in dogs. The omega-3 fatty acids in chia seeds also have anti-inflammatory properties, benefiting canine joint health and longevity.

Organic chia seeds are available at Costco. Before adding chia seeds to your dog’s meal, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes or overnight (which is ideal).

3. Organic hemp seeds

Hemp seeds are a great source of essential fatty acids, including omega-3 and omega-6, which are crucial for maintaining a healthy immune system and reducing dog inflammation. They also provide protein, vitamins, and minerals, supporting energy levels and well-being, making them an excellent addition to a senior dog’s diet.

4. Kefir

Kefir is a probiotic-rich drink that can help promote a healthy gut microbiome in dogs. The beneficial bacteria in kefir support digestion, nutrient absorption, and immune function. A balanced gut microbiome is essential for overall health and longevity in dogs.

If your dog has allergies, try adding kefir to the diet to help build a robust immune system. You can pour the kefir over your dog’s meal or make summer frozen treats by combining kefir with antioxidant-rich berries.

5. Functional mushrooms

Functional mushrooms such as reishi, shiitake, and maitake have powerful immune-boosting properties supporting longevity in dogs. These mushrooms contain beta-glucans and other bioactive compounds that help strengthen the immune system and combat age-related issues.

Organic functional mushrooms are available in the produce section of a natural grocery store. The optimal benefits are obtained by chopping the mushrooms into small pieces and roasting them in the oven for 18-20 minutes.

6. Bone broth

Bone broth is a nutrient-dense food that provides essential minerals, amino acids, and collagen to support joint health and gut function in dogs. The gelatin in bone broth promotes healthy digestion and may help reduce inflammation.

Bone broth is easy and affordable to make, and a lovely meal topper no matter your dog’s diet. Fill a slow or pressure cooker with your favorite bones (e.g., chicken feet, ribs, beef neck bones), leaving room at the top. Add enough water to cover the bones and 1/4 cup of organic apple cider vinegar (to bring out the minerals). Cook in a slow cooker for 20-24 hours; cook in a pressure cooker for 4 to 6 hours. Allow to cool. Transfer to freeze-safe glass jars, discarding any fat that solidifies at the top.

7. Golden paste

Golden paste, made from turmeric, black pepper, and organic coconut oil, is known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Curcumin, the active compound in turmeric, can help alleviate joint pain, support brain health, and boost immunity in dogs, promoting longevity and quality of life (in humans too!).

Many independent pet stores carry golden paste, or dog owners can follow a recipe. When adding it to a dog’s diet, start small and slowly build to avoid digestive upset and allow your dog to adapt to the taste.

8. Organic blueberries

Blueberries are a natural source of antioxidants, vitamins, and fiber that benefit dogs’ overall health and longevity. These tasty fruits can help protect cells from damage, support cognitive function, and aid in maintaining a healthy weight in dogs.

A little goes a long way with blueberries; add a few to the bowl each day or include them in a homemade frozen treat with raw goat’s milk or kefir.

9. Pasture-raised chicken eggs

Pasture-raised chicken eggs are a nutrient-dense food rich in high-quality protein, vitamins, and minerals essential for dogs’ health and longevity. Eggs provide amino acids, fatty acids, and nutrients like choline that support muscle development, brain function, and overall well-being in dogs.

Poached eggs are the healthiest option for dogs. They don’t require the additional fat of butter or oil, and the biotin-blocking component of the whites is deactivated. You can find pasture-raised eggs in your community by looking for local homesteaders online.

10. Canned sardines

Canned sardines are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and minerals like calcium and phosphorus, which promote heart health, joint function, and overall longevity in dogs. The omega-3 fatty acids in sardines also support brain health, reduce inflammation, and contribute to healthy skin and coat.

Canned sardines in water with no salt added are an excellent option for dogs, no matter their diet. Small dogs can enjoy one or two sardines in their meal, while large dogs can have the entire container.

Do you have any favorite whole food supplements for dogs?

Incorporating whole food supplements, like the ten mentioned in this article, into your dog’s diet can provide various health benefits that support a dog’s overall well-being. Continue to educate yourself about dog-safe foods you can add to the bowl because this is not comprehensive. Share any concerns with your veterinarian to learn if a specific food is right for your dog.

Guest Author: Kimberly Gauthier
Kimberly Gauthier dog longevityKimberly Gauthier, CPCN, has more than 10 years of experience in raw feeding and formulating homemade dog diets, with a certificate in canine nutrition. Kimberly is the founder of Keep the Tail Wagging, LLC, a blog about raw feeding and raising dogs naturally, where she shares tips on improving a dog’s diet and health. And she’s the author of Raw Feeding from A to Z, which is available on Amazon.
You can find Kimberly on Facebook and Instagram.

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