liver supplements and meds  

What SAMe Is And How It Relates To The Liver

The liver, a life-essential organ, performs many important functions in the animal body, including detoxification (removal of harmful waste products), and, production of essential hormones, enzymes, proteins and other substances vital to overall health. The nutritional liver supplements Denosyl SD4, Zentonil and similar non-prescription products such as S-Adenosyl contain S-AdenosylMethionine also known by the acronym SAMe, a name you may recognize from the label on human liver supplements as well. SAMe is a natural biochemical produced in the body by the amino acid Methionine. SAMe supplements can be beneficial because SAMe works as a valuable compound to enhance the production of beneficial phospholipids in the liver cell membranes which promote better bile flow through the liver cell membranes. SAMe's contribution involves biochemically donating part of its chemical structure to another cell - in the above case, to the phospholipids. This process eventually converts the SAMe to the beneficial compound glutathione, a potent antioxidant and liver detoxification tool that helps protect liver cells from deterioration. Antioxidants help protect healthy cells from harmful biochemicals and free radicals, a particularly important function in the liver because the liver itself serves as a detoxification organ in a pet's body, and, is therefore at a greater risk of accumulating harmful biochemicals.
SAMe pet meds supplements can often help provide liver support for dogs and cats by helping with the production of SAMe for better liver function improving their quality of life and making them feel better overall

How Denosyl, Zentonil And Other SAMe Meds Provide Support

As much as 45% of liver disorders in dogs and cats today are represented by low levels of glutathione. liver support supplements and pet meds such as Denosyl SD4, Zentonil and Denestra are designed to improve hepatic glutathione levels in dogs and cats in order to help support better liver function. In addition, SAMe products such as Denosyl and Zentonil, are often prescribed by veterinarians to help counterbalance the negative side effects of steroids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and anticonvulsant pet medications. On occasion, the biochemical SAMe may be converted to methylthioadenosine, a compound with anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects that is also suspected to help support cartilage matrix production in the joints as well. Consequently, SAMe supplements are sometimes prescribed to treat joint and arthritis symptoms in pets. In people, SAMe supplements are believed to raise dopamine levels, a mood regulator, and it is sometimes prescribed to treat depression in humans. In pets, including some of our own, observed results from high quality SAMe supplements given to dogs and cats have included improved liver function, as well as, an improvement in the appetite, activity, and attitude of the animal or pet.

Important Information About Giving SAMe Liver Supplements

Side effects are few to none with high quality SAMe supplements, however, vomiting can occur in rare instances. Just the same too much SAMe medication can be harmful, always consult your veterinarian about all meds, food and supplements your pet takes, follow their advice and contact them immediately should an accidental over dose occur.
In addition, there are some important things to note about the administration of SAMe supplements. SAMe pet meds work best when given on an empty stomach, at least one hour before mealtime. Otherwise, the presence of food in the stomach will decrease the absorption of the SAMe and the effectiveness of the medications in general. They can also be given three hours after your pet has eaten, however, it is believed that a fasting period of 8-12 hours before giving this product is optimal. To make things simple we give our dog one in the morning right after we get up and then feed her one hour later. In the evening, when we get home, ten hours after the morning dose, we give her one again, wait an hour, and then feed her an evening dinner. In addition, most high quality SAMe products are enteric coated to prevent premature destruction from stomach acids before it can be adequately absorbed. Consequently, broken tablets will have problems with proper absorption and utilization, and products such as Denosyl, Zentonil and S-Adenosyl should always be given whole, not broken in half. The good news is that SAMe medications can be wrapped in a small bite of moist food such as a pill pocket for easier pilling. Before and after water intake is not a problem either, your pet can drink water without affecting the effectiveness of SAMe supplements. As a matter of fact, in some instances, especially for cats, a drink of water afterwards is recommended in order to keep the pill from sticking in or irritating the throat. SAMe pet meds are sensitive to air and moisture and broken tablets should be discarded. Consequently, many SAMe products such as Denosyl SD4 come in a foil wrapper blister pack container.
If your veterinarian has diagnosed a liver issue in your pet they may very well prescribe a SAMe supplement as part of a liver support treatment regimen to help support your pet's essential liver functions. Selection of specific medications, food, supplements, goals and treatment regimen will vary depending upon your veterinarians opinion and your pet's specific health issues. Liver issues in dogs and cats can be complicated, hard to manage and difficult to diagnose. SAMe supplements may also take a little while to take effect, as a matter of fact, even high quality products like Denosyl, Zentonil and S-Adenosyl may take as long as thirty days to show their full beneficial impact. After a trial period, a blood test can also be helpful, indicating whether or not there has been an improvement in your pet's liver enzyme values. From our own personal experience, our standard poodle showed positive signs of improvement on S-Adenosyl in as little as ten days evidenced by clearer eyes and an increase in energy level.
Human SAMe Medications Should Never Be Given To Pets: Supplements for people can vary greatly in product quality, dosage, makeup and effect on the physiology. They can vary greatly from those specifically produced for dogs and cats, consequently, human SAMe products may not actually be as safe as ones produced for animals. This is why "Human" SAMe should never be given to your pet. High quality pet medication brands like Denosyl have been tested with proven, published safety results. Denosyl's manufacturer Nutramax has also made their high quality manufacturing process public, even though not required to do so - making it a popular choice among veterinarians.
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High Quality SAMe Meds
Careful consideration should be given to which SAMe supplement you choose for your pet. Liver issues in dogs and cats can be complicated and hard to control so some drug companies have chosen to require prescriptions and others have not. It is very important to know that SAMe pet products are considered a supplement by the FDA rather than a medication, consequently, manufacturing is not as strictly monitored, controlled, structured or tested as it would be for licensed meds. This means product quality may suffer and vary greatly from manufacturer to manufacturer. For this reason, the Denosyl brand pet meds from Nutramax, a manufacturer know for it's quality control and published veterinary research studies on all their products, is a popular choice of veterinarians, pet owners and pharmacies. Proven brand name products may be a little more expensive but personally we like the peace of mind of knowing we are getting a high quality produced medication. Saving money by shopping online has always been helpful to us when it comes to making brand name meds a possible choice.
Regarding Chewables
Chewables can be an easy, low stress way to give medication to a pet. However, it is important to remember how dangerous the situation could become should your pet get a hold of a bottle leading to a potential overdose. If you choose a chewable SAMe supplement such as Denosyl or Denamarin chewables, do keep them in a safe place where pets cannot get to them. Also, avoid spilling them where too many could be quickly consumed.

Caution About Methionine Supplements

SAMe is produced by the amino acid methionine. Although SAMe supplements are believed to be beneficial, it is not recommended to give your pet methionine directly in an attempt to increase SAMe production within the body. As a matter of fact, administering high levels of methionine may actually compromise the production of the SAMe in your pet's liver, and potentially increase liver damage. When searching for a way to improve production of SAMe in the liver, it is recommended to supplement your pet's nutrition with supplements that contain already produced SAMe, rather than the amino acid methionine itself. In other words, it's better to supplement with an already completed SAMe compound, rather than the individual amino acid methionine that produces it.
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