When it's time to give a gift for dogs, whether it be for a newly adopted dog, a dog's Birthday or Gotcha Day, or gifts for the holidays, it requires some thought. The most common gifts are dog toys, treats for dogs, and adorable dog clothing or other accessories.  These happy occasions are an opportunity for dog parents to focus on making sure their dog (or other pet) stays healthy.  So help them along by giving a special dog in your life the gift of good health!

Toys, treats, and cute pet apparel are fun gifts for sure, but giving a gift that can contribute to Dog Health and longevity is extra thoughtful and special!  It's a gift to the dog parent as well, because it's something that could help extend the unconditional love and priceless moments they will share together. It can also help lower Veterinary bills - a healthy dog won't get sick as often which may result in fewer trips to the Vet!

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At Christmas, Santa loves to Give Dogs the Gift of Good Health

When I think about how to keep my own dogs healthy, I think of these pet products

5 Dog Health Products 

They may not be items you would normally think of when selecting a gift for a dog or other pet, but a gift that contributes to a dog's health is always a great choice!


When researching supplements for dogs, I noticed a common theme.  The theme I keep seeing is that a dog who is eating a healthy, well balanced diet probably doesn't need dietary vitamin supplements.  However, many Veterinarians say that supplements falling into the following 3 categories can definitely be beneficial for many dogs.  

Glucosamine and Chondroitin 

Many dogs suffer from joint pain, especially as they age. As dogs age, the natural production of glucosamine in the body slows down and can lead to joint pain.  Chondroitin is a natural substance found in cartilage.  When coupled with glucosamine, it can have a beneficial effect on your dog's joints. Less aches and pains? Yes, please!

According to VCA Hospitals (owned by Mars Petcare),  "Chondroitin sulfate is the major glycosaminoglycan found in cartilage. It promotes water retention and elasticity in the cartilage, helping to ensure adequate shock absorption and adequate nourishment of the tissues that line the joint.  Like glucosamine, with which it is often combined in supplements, chondroitin may also inhibit the production of inflammatory mediators that are destructive to the joint."

According to PETMD, in an article on Dietary Supplements For Pets, "Supplements that are formulated for joint health include the ingredients glucosamine and chondroitin, which have been found to be useful in treating arthritis in both humans and animals."

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I wouldn't want joint pain to prevent my Siberian Husky, Icy, from running around like a mad dog in the snow!

With supplements that contain glucosamine and chondroitin, "Pets with arthritis may experience significant pain reduction, allowing improved mobility in arthritic limbs.  Increased mobility leads to more ability to exercise, thereby improving strength." - VCA Hospitals.  And I would add to that; increased mobility can lead to losing excess weight, which helps ease stress on a dog's joints!  

Maximum joint protection to maintain your pet's mobility.  Cosequin DS Joint Health Supplement in tasty chewable tablets. 

Wouldn't it be great to give a gift that can help a dog you love have healthier joints and stay active?!

Omega 3 and Omega 6 Fatty Acids

Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids are essential to pet health and are an important part of a dog's diet. These essential fatty acids are found in various plant and animal sources, and are usually present in good quality pet food in varied amounts.   

Omega 6 fatty acids are required for normal reproduction, growth, immune function, and skin and coat health.   

According to PETMD, Omega 3 fatty acids may help with skin conditions, allergies, kidney function, lymphoma, heart disease, cognitive function, arthritis, and more.

As always, be sure to check with your Veterinarian before adding any supplements to your pet's diet.

I didn't realize that GNC had a line of pet supplements. We've been shopping at GNC stores for our own vitamins and supplements for decades, so I was happy to see that GNC has a supplement for dogs that contains Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.  I haven't tried GNC Omega Essentials yet, but they're definitely something I'd like to try for my dogs! 

I like that their fish oil supplements pictured below are in chewable format instead of tablet/gel capsule form.  A chew is sometimes easier to give pets, especially when they're chicken flavor like these.

GNC Naturals Omega Essentials soft chews contain 230mg of Omega3 and 6 fatty acids. Contains NO wheat, corn or soy,  artificial colors or flavors. 

I discovered Salveo Petcare's OMEGA 3 Wild Fish Oil and Wild Salmon Oil with Omega 3  I started adding these to my dogs' diets.  I love that they are human grade, free of GMO's, and have no artificial preservatives. I add these fish oil supplements directly to their food, which is so easy.  You can find their products on Amazon . (this is NOT an affiliate link)


I had never heard of giving dogs probiotics until just a few years ago.  But when Icy got sick with a really bad stomach upset the Veterinarian gave her antibiotics.  He prescribed a probiotic along with it because he said that antibiotics can upset the balance of the "good"  bacteria in the digestive tract and that a Probiotic would put back the good bacteria that could be compromised by antibiotics.  

Probiotics are living microorganisms similar to the “good” bacteria naturally found in your dog’s digestive tract.  Antibiotics and other drugs can upset the balance of “good” bacteria in your dog’s intestines.  It can also be upset by emotional or physical stress, or eating strange foods or items they're not supposed to eat.

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A Probiotic can help keep the balance of good & bad bacteria in your pet's digestive tract

The digestive tract is the largest immune organ in a dog or cat's body.  A healthy balance of good bacteria is important to help keep their immune system strong and prevent infection and diseases.

According to an article written by Dr. Marty Becker in VetStreet, the three supplements I mention above can be especially beneficial for aging dogs.   "Talk with your veterinarian about what your pet does and doesn’t need, because individual care is important. But in general, here are the three supplements I find myself recommending often to my patients."  In the article Dr. Becker proceeded to discuss the benefits of these supplements; Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) Omega-3 and Omega-6,  Glucosamine with Chondroitin Sulfate, and Probiotics.

Before giving any supplements to your dog, have a conversation with your Veterinarian to make sure s/he agrees with starting your dog on the supplement(s) you are considering.  

It goes without saying that any supplements you want to give your dog should be purchased from a reputable company.  If you're purchasing online, make sure you know something about the company and that they are reputable.  


Veterinary bills can be expensive!  Regular Vet exams can be costly, but when an unexpected injury or illness comes up it can be catastrophic.  What if your dog or cat needs expensive Veterinary care to pay for a serious injury or illness, but you can't afford to pay for it?  That's when Pet Insurance can be a lifesaver.  

Not all Pet Insurance is the same.  Some plans require you to use Veterinarians from their list of participating Vets, which may require switching to a new Veterinarian. Many pet parents don't want to do that.

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Pet Insurance can be a great gift - it's the gift of  Peace of Mind

Not all plans cover every injury and illness.  They don't all offer the same coverage either, and many don't cover pre-existing conditions.  PETMD has several informative articles on Pet Insurance.

When Icy was a puppy I won a year's worth of Pet Insurance at a fundraiser.  It wasn't the most exciting prize in the contest but it seemed very useful.  The disappointing thing was that using it would have required me to leave a Veterinarian we loved, which I wasn't willing to do.  Unfortunately, it was pretty much a waste for me because of that one requirement.

A Pet Insurance policy gives a dog owner peace of mind, knowing they could pay for expensive critical Veterinary care if needed!  Just be sure to do some research before you select the company and plan you want to give as a gift to someone.


One of the things I can't do without both at home and when traveling with our dogs is a Pet First Aid Kit.  I have given First Aid Kits as gifts to a few of my friends and it's always a big hit. It's something many pet parents don't buy for themselves until they experience a first aid emergency.  If I had a dollar for every time my dogs have gotten injured or sick and needed the first aid kit, I'd be rich!   

I always tell people about the time we were traveling through New Mexico and my dog Icy cut her paw open on broken glass on her last potty break of the day - at 11pm.  No Veterinarian's were available.  Our first aid kit was a life saver! I used the Hydrogen Peroxide to clean the wound, applied antibiotic ointment, and bandaged her paw to help slow the bleeding and keep it clean.  It was so scary, paw pads bleed a lot more than I expected!

I really like Kurgo, we have used many of their products.  I found this wonderful Pet First Aid Kit online. It has everything you need to administer first aid for your pet.  It's great to have for those just-in-case emergencies at home, or out on adventures with your pet.   Believe me, a comprehensive Pet First Aid Kit is a gift that would be much appreciated by any pet parent. 

Kurgo's stylish and functional 50 piece pet first aid kit folds up to fit into backpacks, glove compartments and more, and includes a guide with instructions on how to assist your pet with most medical emergencies. 


According to PETMD, around 80% of dogs over the age of 3 have some form of dental disease.  It's the most common health problem effecting dogs.

Pet oral health is an important part of a dog's overall health.  Dental cleanings can cost hundreds of dollars and more, depending on how many teeth may need to be extracted. The procedure also requires your pet to be put under anesthesia.

Clean dogs teeth & freshen breath with a Toothpaste and Brush Set for dogs 

There are a lot of inexpensive pet oral care products you can use at home to help keep your dog's teeth clean and healthy like pet toothbrushes and toothpaste, as well as water additives.  Note: you should never use human toothpaste on pets! 

If you find it difficult to brush your dog's teeth like I do, Oratene makes a water additive you can add to their drinking water that helps prevent plaque & tartar buildup.  They also make a Brushless toothpaste for pets!  I know, it's brilliant right?!  I use these Oratene products for my dogs regularly.

Zymox Oratene's Brushless Pet Oral Care products.

A cute gift basket or gift box with a toothpaste & brush set for dogs, or some brushless pet toothpaste, a bottle of pet Brushless Oral Care Water Additive and some dental chews would make a fun gift. As Dr. Seuss said, "Teeth Are Always In Style" !


Let's face it pet medications are expensive!  Whether it's medication for a pet's medical condition like diabetes, or preventative medications like heartworm prevention or flea & tick control, those costs add up.

A great gift for a healthy dog idea would be a gift card to an online Pet Pharmacy like 1800 Pet Meds .  It can really save a dog parent some money.  Find out which pet pharmacy they use and get them a gift certificate!  If you plan to choose an online pharmacy yourself, make sure you research and find one that is reputable! I use Pet Meds myself and have for years and I'm very happy with them.

If they don't use prescription medications for their dog, a PetSmart, Petco, Amazon Pets, or Chewy  Gift Card is always a welcome gift!  They all have a broad selection of non-prescription pharmacy items, and pretty much everything else for pets.


While you're gifting everyone else, Treat Yourself to something fun, you deserve it!  In my RedBubble Store online, you'll find clothing and other items that celebrate the UNCONDITIONAL LOVE of dogs.  This beautiful, unique design was created especially for Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them by Brooklyn artist Mendydraws

Dog lover products, Dog lover gifts, backpacks, t shirts, phone cases

Visit my RedBubble Store to find t-shirts, Hoodies, Tote Bags, Backpacks,  Phone cases and more with our unique dog designs!

Do you think you would enjoy receiving a gift of Good Health as a gift for your dog?  Which of these products do you think might be the most useful dog health gift for you?  Tell us in the comments!

DISCLAIMERI am not a Veterinarian or Vet Tech, nor do I play one online!  I only share pet health & safety information based on my own research, conversations with my dog's Veterinarian, or experience with my own dog or foster dogs.


Hailey and Zaphod and their Lady said...

Those are some great ideas.

M. K. Clinton said...

These are great tips for maintaining good health. The boys take a probiotic along with their herbal supplements. I am pretty sure that Santa is bringing them a new tube of toothpaste!

Anonymous said...

Glucosamine and Chondroitin have made a huge difference for my senior dog. Last winter we began giving it to him because he was struggling with arthritis and couldn't do stairs very well. After a few weeks, he could move much more smoothly and doing stairs like a champ.

Hindy Pearson said...

Love your gift ideas, they're wonderful. Red takes probiotics every day and they make such a big difference, she's much worse off without them. Pet insurance is another great idea...wish I had some before Jack became paralysed! I also love the gift certificate to an online pharmacy. Although the prices are significantly lower than the vet, any help with bills is a great present.

LaylasWoof said...

What clever ideas I never thought about that. Hmmm maybe you solved my problem now with Madam, thanks so much

Tenacious Little Terrier said...

Mr. N takes a probiotic and has pet insurance. I'm thinking about putting him on a joint supplement but haven't decided on which one.

Sweet Purrfections said...

Great gift ideas. Even though I've heard critics of pet insurance, I wouldn't do without my Trupanion policies. I pay a little more each month because I have no deductible and a 10% copay.

Cook with 5 Kids said...

Thank you for sharing all this information! We do not give our dog Molly any supplements at all. I am going to look into some of these for her.

debbie carter said...

I've been looking to add some supplements to my dogs' diets. Especially Boomer and Roxie, who get some muscle/joint pain or fatigue after long off-leash hikes (because they go all out!!) I will definitely be looking into some of these. Thanks for sharing this info

Beth said...

When you think about it, there is no better gift than good health. Providing dogs with the things that help keep them healthy may not be the most exciting gift, but it is definitely one of the best.

Dash Kitten Crew said...

Good health is the only essential gift!! Supplements, warm clothes and treats while not vital make life so much more fun!!

Merry Christmas ❤️

Marjorie and the Dash Kitten Crew

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I totally agree!!

DawgBlogger said...

Pet health insurance is something people usually think of only after their dog is already sick or hurt. While special savings account is a good idea, it can happen that it won't be nearly enough should something serious happen. We had a savings account. Lasted one week through one major surgery.

jank1961 said...

We do some, but not all, of these things, but they are all great ways to keep our pets healthy!
Merry Christmas to all of you from the whole crew at Wag 'n Woof Pets!

Unknown said...

Pets are part of our everyday lives and part of our families. They provide us with companionship but also with emotional support, reduce
our stress levels, sense of loneliness and help us to increase our social activities. So pets health is very much important. Pet Bounce pain relief for cats and dogs. to take care of your pet from joint pain.

Lola The Rescued Cat said...

These are good gift ideas that people don't always think of. Our mom's friend's dog has some health issues, and some of these would be great to give them. It would really help her friend financially, and help the dog feel better. Great post!

Ruby's Rescued Life said...

Good health is a gift and I love your ideas here! We don't have pet insurance because I've always assumed since we adopt older animals that we would be declined because they have all had pre-existing conditions. I should definitely investigate it.Both Rosie and Ruby had dentals this year - Rosie in October and Ruby in July and oh my gosh, was it expensive!

Tenacious Little Terrier said...

Mr. N has pet insurance already but I'm looking to replace his supplements. He was on a joint aid chew but he won't eat it anymore so I'm looking for one in powder form.

Impurrfectlife said...

I love your perspective on the gift of good health this holiday season. Great post and nice suggestions. If anyone can do one thing overall, I'd say get the insurance! Nice design for your RB shop too! Will be sharing! Happy Holidays!

LaylasWoof said...

Great reminders and I think Layla eats healthier than me LOL plus gets more supplements than I do. I personally feel that today there is so much out there for our pets to keep them healthy it is awesome and I love when bloggers share what they use as it makes me feel more comfortable looking into those products

Dash Kitten Crew said...

Have you tried Pet Mussel Cathy? It's for cats and dogs and is 100% natural NZ supplement. I hide it in Harvey's food * cough cough * because I can't hide it in a treat like I could for a dog!

I remember you reviewed Oratene and it looks excellent. I am going to ask my local pet supermarket if they stock this one. something like this might help as we have a couple of low level cat teeth issues right now.

DawgBlogger said...

Time and health are the most precious commodities.

FiveSibesMom said...

Great post, Cathy! While so many get caught up in the fun gifts, I love the idea of giving the gift of good health to our pets as holiday presents! All such great suggestions! I do give my Huskies many of the supplements you mention, and they truly make a difference. Pinning to share your great suggestions!

FiveSibesMom said...

Oh, and P.S. - I love the beautiful pic of Icy and Phoebe under the tree!

The Rufus Files said...

This is all so important to our pets’ well-being. A first aid kit is necessary and should be dusted off and checked every few months if not used.

Sweet Purrfections said...

The gift of health is so important. I do have pet insurance for the girls. I've talked to my vet about supplements and he doesn't recommend any yet. I am considering using probiotics with them.

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