Rickets is a disease of the bones in puppies. It’s root cause is poor diet. Let us talk about the best food for puppy with rickets.
Rickets is a common disease that is mainly seen in puppies. It is a disease of nutritional deficiency that restricts the growth of the bones, which usually happens when you don’t feed your puppy an adequately balanced diet containing both calcium and Phosphorus.
In this article, I will discuss Rickets as a disease and the best food for puppy with Rickets, which will help prevent your pup from falling prey to this disease.
What Is Rickets?
The bones of a newly born puppy are very soft. As the puppy grows, the bones should become harder. But this does not happen when a puppy suffers from Rickets. Their bones remain soft and weak, which can easily bend and break during movement, causing pain and limping. This condition is usually caused because of the deficiency of calcium and Vitamin-D in the puppy’s diet.
Calcium, Phosphorus, and Vitamin D are as essential for a puppy as they are for human beings. You may take your puppy out for a walk in the sunlight, but your puppy cannot absorb all the vitamin D from sunlight only.
You should also give it food that is a rich source of vitamin D necessary for developing their bones. A properly balanced diet with the optimal vitamin D level is the only solution to prevent Rickets in your puppy.
What Are The Different Types Of Rickets?
Rickets is categorized into two types:
- Type 1: Vitamin D dependent rickets
- Type 2: Vitamin D resistant rickets
Most puppies suffer from Type1 Rickets disease, i.e., they have a deficiency in Vitamin D, Calcium, and Phosphorus. It can affect any species of the dog at any stage of his life. In older dogs, Rickets morphs into osteoporosis.
Type 2 or vitamin-resistant Rickets is hereditary. When a dog suffers from this disease, its body cannot absorb vitamin D. This is noticeable in young dogs and puppies.
What Causes Rickets In Puppies?
When you give only meat to your little puppy, their body doesn’t get proper nutrition. It is important to make sure that their diet contains Vitamins, especially Vitamin D. Otherwise, the pup can become affected with Rickets.
Initially, a puppy will show mild symptoms of becoming lame. After a few days, the condition becomes so severe that your puppy may not even be able to stand on its own.
So you should give food that has an adequate amount of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D to your puppy. If your puppy is suffering from Rickets, it may also get affected by other problems such as osteochondrosis and cartilaginous core. Your puppy’s growth may be permanently stunted by Rickets.
Symptoms Of Rickets
The vertebrae and the legs of puppies are typically the first and most severely to be affected by Rickets. You may notice this disease in your puppy when they are four weeks old or above. You might suddenly observe that your puppy is not able to support the entire body with its legs.
There are other symptoms, too, such as:
- Pain in your puppy’s bones
- The puppy will have difficulty in standing up
- Rubber jaw syndrome.
- Swelling in bones
- Spontaneous fracture
- The spine may curve, and the ribs become soft so that the chest flattens in human beings.
- Attack of indigestion increases as the disease progresses in your puppy
- Crooked legs
- The skin of your puppy becomes dry and scaly
- They may suffer from eczema
Which Puppies Are Prone To Rickets?
Puppies of any breed can develop Rickets. But there is a common belief in our society that canine Rickets mainly comes from puppy mills which may be partial truth because most dogs in puppy mills are fed an improper diet, resulting in Rickets.
There is another condition found in puppies called Luxated patella, whose symptoms are pretty similar to Rickets. So, don’t get confused with these two diseases in your puppy. In Luxated patella, the knees of your puppy dislocate, and the hind limbs curve inward.
Diagnosis of Rickets In A puppy
If you observe your puppy becoming lame or any other symptoms described above, consult the veterinary doctor immediately. They will do a full medical check-up of your puppy, including an X-ray of the bones.
If your puppy suffers from Rickets, his bones will appear larger, and the growth plates will be of irregular shape. The puppy’s alkaline phosphate levels will also be less than the normal value.
The doctor may do several blood tests or bone biopsies to detect Rickets in your puppy.
How To Prevent Rickets Disease?
There should be a correct balance between calcium and Phosphorus for treating rickets disease in dogs. The puppies should also take the proper amount of vitamin D as it helps absorb calcium and phosphorus in bones and blood. But what is the correct ratio of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D in a puppy’s body?
It’s a really hard nut to crack to maintain these three nutrients in the diet of your puppy. Thankfully, there are various quality puppy foods available in the market in which all three nutrients are balanced, and you can give them to your dog.
But if the brand which you are giving to your puppy is not meeting the nutritional requirements, you should ask your veterinary doctor to suggest a healthy brand.
Well, in my opinion, you should start a raw homemade diet right from the start. The raw homemade food is unprocessed and contains all the nutrient values necessary for the development of bones in puppies.
Best Food For Puppy With Rickets
Here I have listed various foods that are a rich source of vitamin D, calcium, and Phosphorus essential for the development of bones in puppies.
Diet source rich in vitamin D
- Fish liver oil
- Egg yolk
- Fatty fish like salmon, tuna
- Liver of beef, lamb, chicken, and pork
Diet source rich in calcium
- Cheese with low fat like mozzarella
- Shells of egg
- Bones of cuttlefish
- Salmon fish
- Vegetables like spinach, broccoli, sweet potato
Diet source rich in Phosphorus
- Seeds like pumpkin, sunflower
- Fish like salmon, whitefish
- The meat of pork, beef
- Organ meats like kidney, intestine, and heart
Best Supplemental Food For Rickets
If you are looking to start adding supplements to your puppy’s diet, then I suggest you give the Bully Ade Pet supplement a try. This supplement has the correct ratio of vitamin D, calcium, and Phosphorus required for the growth of a puppy.
You can give this supplement daily and the food or water to ensure his bones remain healthy. This supplement is also available in beef and chicken flavor.
The Bully Ade pet supplement is ideal for the following conditions
- Growth of new-born puppies
- The puppy who recover from illness and struggle in absorbing nutrients from food
- If your puppy is dehydrated and wants to regain the lost electrolytes.
- The puppy who is fighting parvovirus
- The puppy suffers from diarrhoea.
Frequently Asked Questions
#1. What can I give my puppy for Rickets?
Most homemade food diets don’t have the correct balance of Phosphorus, calcium, and vitamin D . Therefore, you should give your dog high-quality commercial food or the food suggested by your veterinary doctor to your puppies.
#2. Is Rickets curable in puppies?
You need first to correct the diet of your puppy to cure Rickets. You should also expose your puppy to sunlight so that the puppy’s body will get enough vitamin D required to develop bone in their body.
#3. What food has vitamin D for dogs?
The rich in vitamin D foods are liver, egg yolk, red meat, and oily fish such as salmon are good for dogs.
#4. How long does it take for a puppy to recover from Rickets?
It usually takes three months for a puppy to recover from Rickets. But within these three months, you should give an optimal ratio of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D to your puppy.
But it’s a bit difficult to treat puppies who have major bone problems.
Rickets Is Preventable; You Just Have To Focus On The Right Diet.
Rickets is a disease of the bone growth plate. The cute little puppies who don’t get enough nutrition in their diet, especially calcium and Phosphorus, end up suffering from this disease.
Vitamin D is also important to include in their diet because it helps absorb calcium and phosphorus in the body of puppies. If I talk about rescued dogs, they do not get the proper amount of food which may cause severe malnutrition or Rickets.
So try to feed your puppy with a highly nutritional diet loaded with all the vitamins and minerals essential for the development of bones.
I hope this article has helped in knowing about rickets disease and how to prevent it.
Please share your suggestions for this article. And if you currently have a pet pup who is suffering from Rickets, please do share your experiences after trying out some of the best foods for Rickets that we have listed out.