Anyone who owns a dog can attest to how much they’re committed to keeping their pooch happy and healthy. Regular walks, plenty of water, and the occasional trip to the veterinarian are all a part of keeping dogs healthy. But for some dogs, that may not be enough. Not all dogs get the nutrition that they need through their everyday dog food. One item in particular that may be missing is iodine. Pets need iodine in their diet to stay healthy.
Dogs are like humans when it comes to iodine
Many dogs don’t receive enough necessary nutrients in their diet, just like people often lack iodine. Iodine is essential for thyroid health in both humans and pets. As a matter of fact, iodine deficiency is most common in medium- to large-sized dogs between 4 and 10 years old. Some breeds are more susceptible to iodine deficiencies, including Doberman Pinschers, Irish Setters, Golden Retrievers, Great Danes, Old English Sheepdogs, Dachshunds, Miniature Schnauzers, Boxers, Poodles, and Cocker Spaniels.
How can you tell if a dog is iodine deficient?
Symptoms of deficiency in dogs associated with low iodine levels include:
- Poor growth
- Hair loss
- Chronic skin disorders
- Weight gain in older animals
- Behavioral changes such as irritability
- Lethargy, lack of interest in play, increased amounts of sleeping
- Weight gain and obesity
- Cold intolerance
- Slow heart rate
How to get more iodine in your pet’s diet
Iodine is found in fish and iodized salt. Commercial pet foods supplement iodine by adding potassium iodide, potassium iodate, sodium iodide, or calcium iodate. Dogs should receive 0.7 mg of iodine daily for every pound of dry dog food they eat. You may want to look for a pet food that contains fish; ideally listed as the first ingredient. If you want vegan options for your pet, then seaweed may be a better choice. Seaweed has an abundance of naturally occurring iodine and is a great way to supplement your dog’s nutritional needs. You can also find a high-quality pet supplement that contains seaweed. Ideally an organic seaweed supplement made with whole foods.
If you suspect that your pet may be iodine deficient, a good first step is to contact your vet for a full examination. They may recommend a change of diet, so ask them about a seaweed pet supplement to help your pet get the iodine they need. Pets need iodine in their diet to stay healthy, so make sure they’re getting what they need to live a long, happy and healthy life!