Supplementing the Working Dog
Canine supplements to keep your sporting dog at the top of his game
When invited to speak with Nick Adair of the Gun Dog It Yourself Podcast to discuss the importance of proper nutrition and supplementing the hunting dog, it was a natural fit. Annamaet’s president, Rob Downey, has a long and successful career in sled dogs, specifically sprint mushing. Unknown to some, these sled dogs are fairly similar to bird dogs in that they average over 20 mph and can go up to 30 miles in one day or heat of a race.
The question that many ask is, are supplements really necessary for dogs? There are many factors to consider when deciding upon supplements including what else you are feeding, what the dog is doing on a daily basis, and arguably
most important, the quality of the supplement and its ingredients. As company owner, companion animal nutritionist, and accomplished sled dog racer himself, Rob takes great pride in Annamaet’s certification from the National Animal Supplement Council. It is the gold standard for animal supplements and all 4 of Annamaet’s supplements carry the prestigious NASC seal.
A crucial supplement to consider whether in or off season, is a joint supplement. Studies have shown that a good joint supplement can lengthen a canine athlete’s career as well as lessen injuries during the season when compared to those dogs who do not take proper supplements. Current research also shows that a quality joint supplement should be given earlier in life rather than waiting until your dog is older and showing visual signs of needing one, and starting to experience joint issues. In addition to glucosamine, chondroitin, and green lipped mussel, Annamaet adds Vitamin C to its Endure supplement, known as the anti-stress vitamin. We also add psyllium; a soluble fiber that helps to strengthen the gut villi, ideally making for less digestive issues.
During hunting season dogs are typically burning more fat as they use it to help fuel their bodies during heavy work. In addition to increased fat, dogs also need more protein to help maintain muscle mass. More protein in the form of red blood cells is also needed to carry oxygen to the tissues to burn fat, the primary fuel source in this oxidative process.
Many dogs benefit from a nutrient dense supplement that is high in protein and high in fat during this time. Annamaet Impact is known to be very palatable, formulated with high quality protein sources and optimum levels of vitamins and minerals. It is commonly offered as a baited water or broth prior to periods of work, allowing increased caloric density without adding additional dry matter by increasing the food intake.
Most tested and proven in both the lab and field is Annamaet’s Glycocharge supplement. Known as the gold standard in glycogen replenishment, it is the ideal post exercise canine supplement. During periods of intense work or exercise the body depletes muscle glycogen. Mother nature will replenish this over time, however, the issue arises when dogs are competing in back to back events. This is when we often see muscle glycogen depletion and dogs are just worn out. In a study done on exercising dogs, those that were supplemented with Annamaet Glycocharge reached 50% of their pre-exercise glycogen levels within 4 hours after consumption, and 85% of their pre-exercise levels after 24 hours. In the study, dogs given water without Glycocharge supplementation never exceeded 40% of their pre-exercise glycogen levels in 24 hours.
It is no secret that Rob is passionate about providing proper nutrition to our pets, but especially the working dog. This is truly one of the many reasons Annamaet is set apart from so many other companies – Rob has first-hand tested these supplements and formulas first-hand on his own teams and dogs over the years, and can clearly speak to their success.