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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I took 12.5 year old Barkley to his acupuncture appointment today. We were discussing that the energy fields she tested showed he was low on Vitamin A. I told her I had stopped giving Barkley a Pet Tab due to the lead contamination problem. She suggested I go to a compounding pharmacy that is near my house and get an appointment with the nutritionist for a consultation on both Barkley and Toby and have the pharmacy compound a custom made multi-vitamin and supplement for each of them based on their individual needs. The supplement would not have the preservative issues that plague so many of the pet products out there today.

I'm very intrigued by this suggestion and wanted to ask if anyone else on the GRF has done this for their dogs? If so, did you notice an improvement in your dog's overall health and well-being?

Our Barkley is arthritic and suffers from spondylosis and hip dysplasia. He is also hypothyroid, though I understand from the acupuncture vet the best cure for that is the standard prescription medication. In addition he suffers from environmental allergies. We are beginning to suspect our 6 year old Toby may have some digestive issues. Other than that and his hypothyroidism he is strong, athletic and healthy. It would be nice to custom cater vitamins and supplements to their individual needs. I may even ask the pharmacy to concoct a herbal calming medication (without chamomille which Barkley is allergic to) to help him through his thunderstorm anxiety.
 

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I haven't had the need to try customized supplements or vitamins although I am open to non-traditional medical options for both humans and dogs.

A couple of thoughts come to mind. I would want to thoroughly check out the compounding pharmacy recommended to you. A custom designed vitamin or supplement wouldn't be regulated or tested. The nutritionist would need to know exactly what levels of vitamins and mineral your dogs are getting in their daily food in order to make any recommendations for daily supplementing - although a calming herbal medication that you mention should be fairly straightforward. Is the nutritionist someone with special course work in canine nutrition or is this a nutritionist working with people's meds?

Also, I'm not aware that a dog's vitamin A level can be accurately determined by an energy field test. It's not something you can afford to be wrong about, because there are side effects from too high of levels of vitamin A.

Have you explored working with a canine nutritionist (in coordination with your vet) to develop a home-cooked diet to address some of your dog's medical issues?

In other words, I think there are a number of unanswered questions to explore - which I guess you're beginning to do by starting this thread.
Yes, that is the purpose of this thread. I appreciate your input on this as you bring up some valid questions and points.

FYI, I'm not a believer of the energy field testing- I go by the end result- a happy and healthy dog. In the 2 years we've given Barkley acupuncture he has shown marked improvement in his muscle mass, energy and outlook in life (people who knew Barkley when we first adopted him are commenting on his energy and appearance!).

I just made some al dente baby carrots (organic) and am supplementing Barkley with them as a treat. That should take care of his Vitamin A needs naturally. He came to us on a raw food diet and he was not doing well on it. We took him off and saw improvements.

I totally agree about checking the pharmacy out first. This pharmacy is one of 2 highly recommended compoun ding pharmacies in Dallas, both by doctors and veterinarians, including our regular and acupuncture veterinarians. I've used them once before myself. I just checked our BBB and will check with our State Pharmacy Board before I make an appointment. do you have any other suggestions for checking them out?

They have a nutritionist on staff that offers consultations. I will specifically ask about if the nutritionist has training in canine nutrition, though I assume so if veterinarians recommend it to their clients.

In reading their website I learned more about what to expect as far as what they can do or not do. I had already begun to list everything we use to supplement Barkley and I plan on bringing the actual bottles with me. It's easier that way in case there are questions. I prefer to dose my dogs myself with their glucosamin/chondroiton and omega 3 supplementation. There is only one herbal medication for allergies and orthopedic issues prescribed by the acupuncture vet that Barkley will not take on his own so I will just have that one put into a chewable form (if possible--it smells like stale tobacco:yuck:). All i really want the compounding pharmacy to do is put together a good senior mulit-vitamin formulation for him.

Thanks again for your input and suggestions.
 
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