Can I Preserve My Dogโ€™s Immunity without Vaccinations?

BY | July 11 | COMMENTS PUBLISHED BY

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Yes! In fact, you can preserve and enhance your canineโ€™s immunity without vaccinations. This alternative immunity booster is called immunonutrition. Immunonutrition refers to trace elements, minerals, vitamins, and macronutrients that influence antibody production, resistance to diseases, white blood cells, and inflammatory processes. Due to its positive effects in these areas, immunonutrition preserves and enhances the immune system of your canine.Immunonutrition started off with the study of malnutritionโ€™s effects on the insufficiency of the immune system. Due to significant advancements in healthcare for pets, malnutrition is no longer the primary reason for the decrease in immunity. Around 70% of your canineโ€™s immunity system comes from its gut. Because of this, the immune cell receptors found in the GI tract is the best platform for preserving and enhancing the immune system of your canine through diet.

Nutrients to boost and preserve immunity

By providing these basic and essential nutrients, you will be able to boost and preserve your canineโ€™s immunity system:

Amino acids and proteins

When you add Arginine, an amino acid, to your canineโ€™s food, it increases the immune function of the T-cell. T-cell is extremely important to your canineโ€™s immune system as it helps in effectively responding against cancerous cells and pathogens. It isnโ€™t clear how much Arginine is present in commercial and processed dog food. However, chicken, eggs, and salmon are great sources for Arginine.

Essential fatty acids

Arachadonic acid (AA) is one nutrient commonly found in the majority of the cheap commercial pet foods. Low inflammation is a primary and common finding in most chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and arthritis, which affects dogs. Rather than feeding cheap commercial foods, you should feed your dog high-quality pet food. You can improve and boost your canineโ€™s immunity by adding omega-3 fatty acid in its diet. Omega-3 fatty acid reduces prostaglandins production, which reduces inflammation throughout your canineโ€™s body.

Minerals and vitamins

Most canine owners would have heard of free radicals, the damage they cause to the canineโ€™s cells and how it increases the occurrence of diseases. When your canine is under stress or sick, the production of free radicals will increase significantly. Antioxidants such as zinc, selenium, vitamins E, C, and A protect your canineโ€™s body from free radicals. You can feed your canine fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, and raw nuts as they are rich in antioxidants.Besides feeding your canine a diet with nutrients to improve and preserve its immunity, you also need to maintain your canineโ€™s physical condition and weight. Excess fat will make the immune system weak, which makes it all the more important to burn excess fat. If you have any queries regarding this topic, feel free to leave a comment below. 

Hover over to next section to know more about the ways to tackle the after effects of such situations.

Help For Dogs Fighting IMT (Immune Mediated Thrombocytopenia)

Our dogs are very precious to us. They are probably the most loyal being you can find. Thatโ€™s why when something as frightful and frustrating as the IMT affects one of our own, we tend to break down. To understand how to better help our dogs who are dealing with this disease, we first need to understand what it is.

What Is IMT Or Immune Mediated Thrombocytopenia?

Immune Mediated Thrombocytopenia is a dire illness where the body targets the dogโ€™s own platelets and can be extremely serious. The surface of the platelets will have antibodies bound to them, which, in turn, causes them to destruct prematurely.Platelets are important for blood clotting. When the platelet count is low, it can lead to serious conditions like bruising, anemia, bleeding, and others.

There Are Certain Breeds That Are Predisposed To This Condition. These Breeds Are:

  • The American Cocker Spaniel
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Standard Poodle
  • Toy Poodle
  • German Shephard
  • Old English Sheepdog
  • Labrador Retriever

Other dogs that are prone to this IMT are middle aged dogs and dogs who are out of their prime years.

Symptoms Of IMT In Dogs:

IMT is pretty hard to diagnose so if you see any of these symptoms, donโ€™t hesitate to make an appointment at your veterinarian.

  • Weakness
  • Bruising
  • Lethargy
  • Rapid breathing
  • Bleeding from the nose
  • Bleeding from the gums
  • Tarry stools
  • Difficulty breathing
  •  Pale gums
  • Lack of appetite or anorexia
  • Sudden Death

What Happens After Your Dog Has Been Diagnosed With IMT?

Remember that you have to stay strong for your pet because this is a very confusing time for him. You and your vet will first have a detailed discussion about treatment plan. Your vet will then prepare a customized individual treatment plan just for your dog. Because of the aggressive nature of the treatment plan, your dog will likely require round the clock care and will need to be hospitalized throughout his treatment period.Immunosuppressive drugs like cyclosporine, azathioprine, and steroids have been known to be effective in the treatment of dogs with IMT. These drugs will help to control the response of your dogโ€™s immune system to the depleting blood platelets.Supportive care such as IV fluids and oxygen support may be necessary depending on how sick your dog has become. In some cases, especially if your dog has become anemic, blood transfusions will be required.

What To Do Once Your Dog Has Recovered From IMT:

The administration of immuno-suppressive drugs may need to continue for several months. Your dog can be slowly weaned off of the medication after the completion of the treatment plan. Your dog may need drug therapy for the rest of his life to make sure that his platelets are not dropping. In the case of most dogs, they live pretty normal lives after the treatment has been completed.

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