The following segment aired on O2 Media’s The Balancing Act on Lifetime Television. Joining the show was veterinarian Lisa Radosta to talk about Novifit, a nutritional supplement for dogs and cats.
O2 Media: We love our pets, and as they grow older with us, just like humans, they start to exhibit signs of old age. What we don’t always realize is that the undesirable behaviors characteristic of old age in dogs and cats can now be managed and even improved, just like in humans. Here today to talk about this is Lisa Radosta, Veterinarian and Board-Certified Veterinary Behaviorist from Florida Veterinary Behavior Service.
I have a dog and a cat. My cat just turned 10 this month and I’ve read that they can start to show some signs of age, some behavioral changes around that age, so I’ve been really kind of keeping an eye on him. Is that true?
Lisa: That’s right. Around that age, 11 in cats, we’re gonna start to see signs of cognitive dysfunction, or CDS. This is a medical disorder that we see in geriatric dogs and cats that manifests itself by a decrease in cognition, memory, and learning. Now, about a quarter of the dogs age 11 are going to show at least one sign. Once they get to be 15 or 16, that number rises to 68%. In cats about age 11, we’re seeing about 35% of those cats showing signs. As they get older, it is the same thing. We’re seeing more and more signs in those older cats and dogs.
O2 Media: What kind of behavioral changes should I be looking for?
Lisa: You’re going to want to look for disorientation, changes in your cat’s interactions with you, changes in the sleep/wake cycle, lose of house-training, and changes in activity. So, for example, some of my patients will get stuck in a corner, will not be able to figure out how to get out, and so they’ll bark and cry. A lot of my patients keep their owners up. From 2:00 in the morning till 6:00 in the morning, the animal’s pacing, howling, barking. Then some lose their house-training. Animals that were perfectly well house-trained now are eliminating in the home. It’s very, very stressful for the family. I mean, look, these are our babies. I want to commit to taking care of her. But when you’re trying to manage your life, this elderly dog, you’re not sleeping at night, it’s very stressful.
O2 Media: So, if we start to notice these changes with our pets, what do we do?
Lisa: You need to go to your veterinarian because although CDS is not curable, it’s treatable and there are lots of great treatments. We can use behavior modification, environmental changes, food, medication, and we can use nutraceuticals. One of our newer nutraceuticals is called Novifit. Novifit is SAMe.
O2 Media: What is that?
Lisa: It is a substance that’s in your body and mine and our dogs and cats. It’s mainly in your brain and your liver. It’s a very powerful antioxidant and also boosts those happy neurotransmitters. Now, we have to think about this is a nutraceuticals, and not all nutraceuticals are created equal. These are supplements that are not FDA regulated. So you want to make sure when you go look at nutraceuticals, you look for quality and make sure that product has a good study behind it.
O2 Media: What have these studies shown when it comes to Novifit?
Lisa: What’s so cool about Novifit – and the reason I can get so excited about it – is because there’s an excellent, really rigorous study behind it. About 50% of the owners saw their dogs mental impairment decrease by 50%. That’s a big drop. More energetic dogs, more interactive dogs. So we’re seeing those signs disappear using this type of supplement.
O2 Media: Now, you mentioned that nutraceuticals are kind of nutritional supplements. How does Novifit work? How do you give it to your pet?
Lisa: It’s very simple. It’s just a once-a-day tablet. You just give it in a little meatball of food just like you’d give anything else. It’s very, very easy.
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