Should I give my dog calcium supplements?

Dogs

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Our question this week was:

I am getting conflicting advice about calcium supplements for my Italian Greyhound. She has three leg breaks, one 6 years ago and two within the past 6 months. Breeders say give calcium, but the Vet says it can actually be detrimental. Which is the case?

Libby Back

Answer

Hi – thanks for your email. You wrote that your Italian Greyhound has had three leg factures and you are wondering if you should supplement calcium.

Italian greyhounds seem to have more fragile limbs then many other breeds. I've seen several in my career that jump from the owners arms and break both of their front legs – right across the radius and ulna. In some ways they are hearty dogs but their limbs can be fragile.

If you are feeding a good quality premium food, they should have all the calcium that they require. More calcium won't change the bone structure unless your dog is deficient. These fractures don't occur from calcium depletion.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra



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About The Author

debra-primovic Dr. Debra Primovic

Debra A. Primovic, BSN, DVM, Editor-in-Chief, is a graduate of the Ohio State University School of Nursing and the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine. Following her veterinary medical training, Dr. Primovic practiced in general small animal practices as well as veterinary emergency practices. She was staff veterinarian at the Animal Emergency Clinic of St. Louis, Missouri, one of the busiest emergency/critical care practices in the United States as well as MedVet Columbus, winner of the AAHA Hospital of the year in 2014. She also spends time in general practice at the Granville Veterinary Clinic. Dr. Primovic divides her time among veterinary emergency and general practice, editing, writing, and updating articles for PetPlace.com, and editing and indexing for veterinary publications. She loves both dogs and cats but has had extraordinary cats in her life, all of which have died over the past couple years. Special cats in her life were Kali, Sammy, Pepper and Beanie.