Your Chihuahua needs specific vitamins to maintain healthy bones, vision and metabolism. Although vitamins are necessary for your Chihuahua’s health, some supplements and excess vitamins may harm him. Learn to recognize vitamin deficiencies in your Chihuahua and work with your veterinarian to correct them, in order to keep your Chihuahua healthy and active. Although commercial dog foods claim to provide full nutrition, they often do not supply all the necessary vitamins for Chihuahuas.
As dogs age, they often lose the ability to absorb all the nutrients available in their food. Many companies offer supplements for senior dogs and your veterinarian may recommend starting these at about age 7. The right combination can increase your Chihuahua’s energy.
Find vitamin A in leafy green vegetables, fish oils, carrots and dairy products. This vitamin for your Chihuahua promotes healthy skin and hair. A deficiency can cause vision problems or slow growth. Too much may produce bone deformities and bleeding disorders. Overdose may also cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and hair loss. According to Vetinfo.com, vitamin A is fat-soluble and should only be given if your Chihuahua develops symptoms of deficiency. Your veterinarian should make that decision.
Vitamin B Complex
Provide your Chihuahua B vitamins from whole grain cereals, liver and Brewer’s Yeast. Deficiency causes fatigue, lethargy, skin problems, hair loss and nervousness. Although severe overdose can cause nerve damage, usually excess vitamin B is excreted in the urine.
Vitamin C may improve your Chihuahua’s immune system and energy levels. Found in fruits, broccoli, cabbage and leafy green vegetables, a deficiency may trigger swollen joints, poor teeth or slow healing. Too much vitamin C sometimes causes diarrhea, although the dog usually expels excess in the urine. According to the University of Florida, Dogs produce vitamin C in their bodies. However, they may need more when under stress.
Vitamin D promotes strong teeth and bones. Found in dairy products and fish liver oil, a deficiency causes poorly developed bones and vision problems. Vitamin D is also fat-soluble and excess is dangerous. Too much may produce nausea, vomiting and calcification of muscles including the heart.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant. It helps your Chihuahua age well, boosts his immune system and makes his coat shiny. Found in vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, green vegetables and meats, a deficiency causes bleeding disorders and reproductive failure. Too much vitamin E usually does no harm. According to Vetinfo.com, vitamin E may slow down aging and prevent cataracts.
Vitamin K prevents blood clotting. Found in fish liver oil, yogurt and egg yolk, a deficiency causes bleeding disorders and miscarriages. Usually too much does no harm.
Duncan Smith/Photodisc/Getty Images