Staying healthy is on everyone’s minds these days, and when you welcome a dog into your family as a member, you want to keep him free from illness and disease as well. One key component to sustaining health and keeping your dog free from disease is by promoting a healthy dog immune system.   

  
The immune system is the bodies first defense against disease; it helps to identify potentially harmful substances that enter the dog’s body, such as bacteria and viruses, and if the immune system is healthy, it will attack these microbes, therefore preventing disease.  The immune system is the army of your dog's body, fighting off harmful invaders.


Water
The first step to sustaining healthy immune function is by making sure  your dog always has a fresh and clean supply of drinking water available.  The more hydrated a dog is, the less likely he is to get sick.  Drinking water can also provide a number of other benefits to canine health as it helps to flush out unwanted toxins from their bodies.


Exercise

Exercise is also an important factor to any immune system.  Exercise contributes to immune function by reducing the heart rate, helping the body to use calories most effectively and reducing body fat. During exercise immune cells circulate through the body more quickly and are able to better kill bacteria and viruses.


Healthy Diet
A healthy diet is key to a strong dog immune system.  Canine health can be improved through feeding them raw foods instead of commercially processed dog foods that are popular today.  Wild dogs are able to live off of raw foods and are generally healthier than domestic pets because of this, so why not consider the switch to raw food?  It may take a while for your dog to get used to, but it will show benefit in the long run.  Raw food instead of processed food could help to improve the digestive system, heart health and ultimately, the immune system.


Supplements
There are several supplements that can be administered to promote your dog’s immune system.  One very important supplement is called a probiotic. When the beneficial bacteria in the digestive system is compromised in any way, the good bacteria that fights disease is diminished. Probiotics add back into the digestive tract the beneficial bacteria needed for optimal health. You can give something like Canine Fortiflora a try. It can be purchased from your vet or a variety of pet health stores. Certain breeds are more susceptible to immune system problems but they can be prevented if the right actions are taken so speak to your vet about how to best keep your dog’s immune system functioning.


Environment
Last but not least, it is essential to make sure the environment your dog is living in is healthy; this includes your house.  Be sure he or she is not exposed to pesticides or any other harmful substances that may damage its immune system.  Making sure there are not any toxins around will also help to keep you healthy!  Also, don’t keep your dog cooped up inside all day – all dogs need their fresh air no matter what. 


The dog immune system is the first defense against illness, so working to improve its function will help to keep your dog healthy, happy and a member of your family for a long time.

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