As their crowning glory, a pet’s coat is the first and easiest sign to tell if they’re healthy. If your furbaby has a healthy coat, people tend to approach you to either compliment your pet or to curiously ask questions like “How do you get a shiny coat on your dog or cat?”, “Do you use coconut oil for your dog’s coat?”, “What cat or dog skin and coat supplements are you giving you pet?” and “Do you use shiny dog or cat coat spray?”. If this has ever happened to you, you know that ever pet parent is just dying to know the secrets to glossy and shiny furbaby hair.

What they don’t know is, you can’t just depend on pet grooming or fancy hair products for everything! Furbaby grooming is not enough to get the results every pet parent dreams of (and it gets quite expensive too!). The only secret there is to your furaby’s glossy and shiny coat is feeding your furbaby the right kinds of vitamins and minerals to nourish his coat! It’s that simple.

Get them glossy and gleaming with daily grooming, a lot of love, free flowing cuddles, and of course, good food! What goes in, shines out, and we’ve outlined for you some essential nutrients to get your furbaby looking their best! Here are tips on what to feed your furbaby for a glossy and shiny coat. 

What to Feed: 4 Nutrients for A Glossy and Shiny Coat

Essential Fatty Acids

Dull and dry coats are caused by nutritional deficiencies. Essential Fatty Acids such as Omega 3’s and 6’s are well known nutrients used to address this issue.

Some pets are lucky to be high in omega-6 to have a shiny coat and help replace the oils in skin. For pets who don’t have much omega-6, pet stores sell such supplements in forms of sunflower, safflower and vegetable oil. These oils can be mixed in the meals of your furababies, one teaspoon per meal for small dogs and one tablespoon per meal for large dogs. Using fresh oils will yield more effective results.

On the other hand, omega-3 is beneficial to pets with skin problems. These nutrients help prevent cell damage and inflammation that may manifest on your furbabies skin. Inflammation causes poorer nutrient absorption which will reflect in the luster of your pet’s coat. Pet parents can use flaxseed oil and fish oil. For cases of itching and inflamed skin, pet parents can use supplements that contain EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).

Omega 3’s and 6’s are best combined with Vitamin E and zinc for optimum absorption, and both work in conjunction for overall health, and works in protecting skin from oxidation damage. Fish and Omega 3 enriched food or supplements should do the trick to add to your pets’ shiniest coat. Before purchasing any pet food, check the label to see if it contains these essential fatty acids and in the right doses.

Zinc

Zinc is an essential mineral for dogs and cats as it improves the overall quality of skin and coat health of your furbaby. It is highly involved in hair growth and regulation, collagen synthesis, and serves as one of the most powerful antioxidants in the body.

To get zinc in your furbaby’s diet, feed him high quality meat sources such as beef, salmon, and turkey as they all contain higher levels of zinc compared to plants, which is necessary for metabolizing fat and protein, and keeping your furbabies skin hydrated. This promotes a healthy ‘landscape’ for healthy and strong fur to grow from.

The amount of zinc your pet absorbs will depend on his breed. Those pets who have lesser ability to absorb zinc may be fed a diet with higher zinc content to avoid zinc deficiency, leading to other skin related problems. Symptoms of zinc deficiency include: dry, flaky and thickened skin, retarded hair growth and hair loss.

Pet parents may add zinc into their home prepared diets in forms of zinc sulphate or zinc oxide. The ideal level of zinc in a pet’s diet is 120 ppm. If your pet is experiencing skin problems, it’s best to consult with your doctor regarding your pet’s diet before making any changes.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin essential in every pet’s diet. It can address patches of thinning and falling fur from your adorable furbaby. If you spot any bald areas or notice an increase in hair loss, your furbaby may be lacking in this vitamin, as it is necessary for growth and repair of skin. Senior furbabies tend to lose patches of fur more, so try giving them vitamin A in the form of supplements (it’s easier for them to digest), and opt for kibble recipes that contain vitamin A containing foods. Some say that dogs with shiny coats can be attributed to the eggs in their diet.

Other food sources you can depend on for vitamin A: Carrots, egg yolks, fish liver oil, leafy greens, liver, yellow fruits.

Protein

Every bowl of furbaby kibble should contain all good quality animal protein! Protein is the bread and butter of a pet diet, and regular adequate amounts of protein will keep your furbaby in tip-top shape. If you’re wondering why your pet could do with a shinier coat, even though they are at a healthy weight with good muscle tone, know that your furbabies’ muscles get dibs on the protein they eat.

Protein is firstly assimilated into muscle before going anywhere else on those furry bodies, so if you’re feeling that your pets coat is looking like he/she could use a little shine, up their protein intake! The more, the better, but don’t overdo it!

Pets with itchy, flaky skin, coarse and brittle coats are signs and symptoms that your pets are either low in protein or is consuming low quality protein. Remember not all protein is made equal. Refrain from buying grain-based products or pet food made from by-products and low-quality meat meals. Instead, choose healthy furbaby food - good quality pet food that lists all animal sources to encourage the growth of glossy and shiny furbaby hair all day, every day!

Protein sources for pets: animal sources (beef, chicken, lamb, fish) and plant sources (corn, soy).

Essential acids, zinc, and vitamin A play a vital role in making your furbaby’s skin and coat glossy and shiny, making all other pet parents envious of your furbaby. Instead of asking all those questions about furbaby grooming and furbaby pet care, you can now look for the best cat or food for a healthy coat! The secret to finding this is to make sure the label has all the ingredients listed here.

Not all pets have the same nutritional needs, so supplements should be chosen accordingly. With the help and guidance of your veterinarian or a qualified pet nutritionist, you can incorporate these vitamins and minerals to ensure your pet gets the right amount of these vitamins and minerals. And remember, this isn’t magic! It takes time to get glossy and shiny furbaby hair.

Results will take weeks or months, depending on the current situation of your furbaby. The wait will be worth it when you see your furbaby happily running around with gorgeous skin and hair!

Glossy and shiny coat tips

Source: @churroandtoffee

Reference:

peteducation.com

vetsallnatural.com.au

peteducation.com

vetstreet.com