Vitamin E for dogs: pros and cons of Vitamin E for dogs

Vitamin E for dogs
Vitamin E is very important for the health of your dog. Vitamin E supports the immune system of your German Shepherd and prevents your dog from common health problems due to deficiencies. Is Vitamin E for dogs good to give as an extra supplement? And how much vitamin E for dogs is appropriate in order to prevent deficiencies? Can dogs take Vitamin E for humans? What are the health benefits for using Vitamin E for dogs? And what is the best vitamin e for dogs dosage? Please read on to find the answers to these questions.



Vitamin E for dogs


Vitamin E and dogs; is Vitamin E good for dogs?

Is Vitamin E good for dogs? Short answer: absolutely! In fact, it is actually a necessary supplement.
Vitamin E is a group of compounds that include tocopherols and tocotrienols. It naturally occurs in eight chemical forms; (alpha, beta, gamma and delta toocpherol) and (alpha, beta, gamma and delta tocotrienol).
Vitamine E will boost the immune system of your dog. Actually the same as it boosts the immune system of humans! It also boosts a healthy dog skin and coat for your German Shepherd! That’s all because Vitamin E is a fat soluble antioxidant.
Please note that too much Vitamin E can do your dog harm.

Typically there are two types of vitamins:

  • water soluble vitamins, like vitamin B and C are eliminated via urination. Therefore there are no overdosage risks, since they are easily washed out
  • fat soluble vitamins, like vitamin E, are stored in the body of your dog (liver and fatty tissue). Too much of these vitamins stored in here can cause a number of health problems. So watch out!

Most dogs get their daily vitamins via their food. That’s why good quality dog food is so important[link naar Orijen dog food reviews]. So if you consider giving vitamin E to your dog, first consult your vet.

Vitamin E for dogs can be used both internally (soft gel capsules given in oral form) and externally (Vitamin E oil).

Can dogs take vitamin E for humans?

Yes it’s possible, however, it is advised to give your dog supplements and vitamins that are formulated for dogs. Just to make sure that your dog gets the right vitamins and dosage. So unless you have run out of stock and want to give your dog vitamin e for humans, it is better to give your dog vitamin e for dogs.

How to give vitamin E for dogs

While Vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin, it should be given with a fatty meal to enhance absorption in the bloodstream.


Benefits of Vitamin E for dogs


Vitamin E boosts your dog’s immunity

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant: it is fighting and reducing the number of free radicals in your dog’s body. This means that it supports and improves your dog’s immune system. Free radicals are unstable but damaged molecules that attack healthy cells. This increases the risk of various disorders. Especially during winter months where the skin of your dog tends to be dry and itchy, it is important boost the immune system of your dog by ensuring he gets enough vitamin E.


Vitamin E for dogs and cancer

While Vitamin E fights and reduces free radicals in the body of your dog, this also reduces the risk of your dog getting cancer. Vitamin E induces antioxidants which protect cells against change and damage leading to cancer.


Vitamin E for dogs skin, joints and muscles

Connective tissues makes up a big part of the body of your dog. It also plays a vital role in the health of your dog. Vitamin E supports this connective tissues by maintaining the elasticity of skin and muscles. This also minimizes the loss of mobility in joints.
If you want to have your dog to have a healthy and shiny coat, you have to make sure your dog gets enough dosage of vitamin E. A dry itchy skin and hotspots of dandruff may indicate canine dermatitis which may be caused by Vitamin E deficiencies.


Dog arthritis and Vitamin E

Vitamin E also possesses anti-inflammatory properties that may help deal with pain and swelling in dogs with arthritis. Elderly dogs with painful and stiff joints may benefit from vitamin E supplements to improve mobility.


Vitamin E for Dogs healthy heart

Vitamin E strengthens the cardiovascular system and reduces cholesterol levels. Experts therefore believe that Vitamin E promotes a healthy functioning of the heart of your dog.
When your dog develops heart problems, like tachycardia, your vet may prescribe Vitamine E supplements.


Vitamin E oil to treat dog calluses and warts

Dogs can get calluses or pressure sores on their elbows, hips and paws when they sleep on hard surfaces or rest on a bony area. Dog calluses can be treated with Vitamin E oil. This will help to soften and heal the skin. Put enough Vitamin E oil on the affected area. Rub it gently in until it is fully absorbed. Caution: make sure your dog will not lick this area!
In order to treat warts: puncture a vitamin E capsule with sterilized needle. Apply with clean fingers the contents of the capsules directly to the warts. Repeat 3 to 4 times a day.


Vitamin E oil help with dog ear infection

Vitamin E oil can be used as a home remedy to help relieve pain caused by middle and inner ear infection:

  • break a vitamin E capsule
  • drop the oil in the affected ear


Vitamin E oil for dogs for dogs itchy skiin

If your dog has a dry skin, this often can be itchy which is annoying for your dog. In this case your dog will benefit from you rubbing Vitamin E oil on his skin. Another treatment would be to give your dog a bath with Vitamin E oil in the water. This will increase the condition of the skin and will protect your dog from a dry skin. Especially for long coated dogs giving a Vitamin E oil bath is easier than to rub it on the skin of your dog.


Vitamin E for dogs dosage

How much vitamin E for dogs is required? This depends on the age, size and health of your dog. For large dogs, like German Shepherds, the recommended daily dose is 800IU. High activity, working dogs and breeding dogs may require a higher dosage of vitamin E. Consult a vet for proper dosage.



Importance of Vitamin E for dogs


Vitamin E deficiency in dogs

After reading all this, it should be no surprise to you, that vitamin E is essential to dogs. Vitamine E deficiency in dogs can cause can cause several health problems often cause by too much free radicals in the body of your dog:

  • Eye problems; retinopathy, cataracts and corneal ulcers
  • Impaired immune system
  • Muscle wasting, weakness and paralysis
  • Itchy skin, dandruff, dull and thin coat
  • Weight loss
  • Development of sores on the body


A study published on the Canadian Journal of Comparative Medicine and Veterinary Science, gives a case of vitamin E deficiency in puppies that were fed and maintained on a diet of commercially evaporated milk. These pups presented with progressive muscle weakness in the fore and hind legs by about the twentieth day after birth. They also exhibited lack of muscle tone and hypersensitivity to pain.

Feeding these puppies with synthetic alpha tocopherol alleviated symptoms of vitamin E deficiency.

Better safe than sorry, so begin treatment before symptoms become too advanced.


Is Vitamin E for Dogs safe?

Yes vitamin E is safe for dogs and in principle there are no known toxicities. Even at high doses. It may happen that your dog shows signs of lethargy when you start giving him vitamin E, but that will be temporarily. When given orally, large doses of vitamin E may result in vomiting.
There might be a side effect of giving vitamin E though. Vitamin E increases the ability of the body to absorb other fat soluble vitamins like vitamin A. And vitamin A is potentially toxic at high doses. So watch out for the combination of vitamin E and A. Sometimes a high dosage of vitamin E may increase the risk of bleeding disorders.

Do not give vitamin E to your dog if there are any known allergies to it.



So Vitamin E for dogs has lots of benefits for the health of your dog, so you better watch the signals of vitamin E deficiency in dogs as described.  I hope you find this useful and if you have any questions, please ask them below. And remember to consult your vet if you want to be sure to give your dog the right dosage of vitamin E.