The idea behind Hike Again Remedies was born while walking with Blaze – our always up-for-a-hike dog – on one of the many beautiful forest trails on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia.
WHY DOES A DOG NEED SUPPLEMENTS?
One morning in the fall of 2020, I went to my local pet store. While there, I noticed a display of veterinary supplements, which caught my attention. Even though I'm very passionate about the research, formulation, and manufacturing of nutraceuticals for humans, I'd never considered one for dogs!
I left the store without buying anything and quickly forgot all about it.
A few days later, Blaze and I were walking in Soames Hill Park when I remembered about the supplements in the store.
What exactly was in them? Why would a dog need a supplement? Clearly humans use and benefit from supplements. But dogs? Do they need supplements too?
I started researching about the role of veterinary supplements and discovered that, when properly formulated, they could support the normal health and function of several structures and systems like joints, the gastrointestinal track and even their brain and immune system. Like humans, a dog's diet doesn't always contain all the necessary fatty acids, antioxidants, amino acids and probiotics needed to maintain the normal and healthy functioning of these structures and systems.
But what really caught my attention was to discover that mature and senior dogs (i.e., 7 years and older, just like Blaze) can greatly benefit from veterinary supplements. The reason behind this is that, as they age, mature dogs could start to develop:
▸ Mobility problems and stiffer joints
▸ Digestive problems resulting in poor nutrient absorption
▸ A less responsive immune system
▸ Irregular sleep patterns
▸ A lower tolerance to unexpected noises, people, or other dogs
▸ Changes to their brain's health and functioning.
EXPLORING MY OPTIONS
My curiosity took me back to the store, where I had bought two different bags of supplements. I read the list of ingredients and was not pleasantly surprised by what I found.
Both products contained added fillers, gums, colours and artificial preservatives. The labels on the bags had unsubstantiated health claims, and lacked the Veterinary Health Product official designation from Health Canada. While looking for other alternatives online, I noticed what appears to be plain thoughtlessness in many products advertised for mature and senior dogs. Why are these products made in kibble format if some older dogs have sensitive gums and teeth? Why are so many fillers, gums and sugars added to something that is supposed to be a health supplement?
I was also surprised to notice that many premium products (i.e., the ones made with better ingredients and no preservatives) are not made in Canada. This implies an enormous carbon footprint to bring and distribute them here and a lack of support for Canadian manufacturers (which are perfectly able to formulate and manufacture premium products following the highest standards of quality and safety). To make things even worsts, almost all these products are packaged in multi-laminated plastic bags that can't be easily recycled.
I was frankly frustrated and disappointed.
MAKING A BETTER SUPPLEMENT FOR MATURE AND SENIOR DOGS
There's a real need for adequately researched, formulated, and manufactured veterinary supplements focused on supporting ageing dogs. I knew it was up to me to create a line of products that can help senior dogs and their humans to continue sharing time outdoors, just like Blaze and I love to do. With this in mind, I immediately began creating a list of everything I would love to see in my own line of products:
▸ A formulation containing only 100% active ingredients with no added fillers, gums, sugars, colours, flavours or artificial preservatives.
▸ Manufactured in full compliance with Health Canada regulations and the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).
▸ Well-researched ingredients recognized by veterinary professionals to support the health and specific needs of mature and senior dogs.
▸ A product in powder form that allows mature and senior dogs with reduced appetite or dental and gum problems to ingest them easily, without changing their current food.
▸ Made in Canada by one of the many Canadian-owned and operated companies following the highest manufacturing standard (called cGMP).
▸ Being the first brand of veterinary supplements to use third-party certified compostable pouches. The type of bag you can put in your green waste bin or backyard composter instead of the landfill.
▸ An independently verified program that allows me to offset the carbon emissions from every shipment of my products.
... and the list just kept growing.
INTRODUCING HIKE AGAIN REMEDIES
After more than a year working with veterinary and regulatory experts, compliant manufacturers and responsible marketers, I am thrilled to announce I can now offer to you and your aging canines the Hike Again Remedies line of premium veterinary health products!
Hike Again Remedies is the only line of Canadian Veterinary Health Products (VHP) exclusively devoted to caring for mature and senior dogs.
My mission with Hike Again Remedies is a promise to help you and your ageing dog to keep enjoying together an active and healthy lifestyle.
David and Blaze
OUR DOG SUPPLEMENTS
Our Veterinary Health Products are designed to support mobility, immunity, and cognitive health in mature and senior dogs.
If your dog struggles to walk, get up after lying down or has stopped loving hikes, try our HIKE AGAIN formula. This product is created to support healthy joints, mobility, and cartilage tissue to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle in mature and senior dogs.
As your dog ages, it may have digestive issues and difficulty absorbing nutrients, leading to a weakening immune system. SHIELD AGAIN is formulated to support your dog’s immunity and digestive systems, adding health and vitality back to its life.
Many dogs experience behavioural changes as they grow older. If your dog is sleeping poorly or hasn’t been his usual self, SHARP AGAIN can help. This product is formulated to support normal brain function, cognitive health, and healthy sleep patterns.