‘Nutrition is key to a pet’s recovery’ : Dr Wim Van Kerkhoven

If there is anything worse than the pain of watching a sick pet suffer, it is watching them refuse to eat during recovery. It is common for them to lose their appetite, and lack of nutrition makes them weaker, and their recovery much tougher. Viyo International, a Belgian company, recently launched a nutraceutical in India called Viyo Recuperation, which combines all the required nutrients along with essential vitamins and fatty acids, helping our four-legged friends get back on their feet. Dr Wim Van Kerkhoven, DVM and managing partner at Viyo International, speaks to Newsonpets, about pet parent problems and pet nutrition.


Humanizing the pet is something most vets, at least in India constantly remind us to stay away from. Well, you have different theory here and especially in the process of treatment and recuperation.

Pets became part of the family, more than ever. What people do in terms of their own nutrition and health, they like to support their pet in the same way. This is where the word ´humanizing´ is mainly used, for health and nutrition. If something goes wrong with their health, their baby needs to be treated in the best and most complete way available. Now, we have a new way to ´recuperate´ the animal faster and better after illness and surgery, mainly driven by the knowledge from human medicine. This is great news as we don’t like to see our pets suffering. We like to see them eating and drinking as fast as possible, so they can recuperate better.

Nutrition, according to you, is the key to a quick recuperation of a sick pet?

In the past, we thought that the most important thing to recuperate after illness or surgery was providing energy (kCal) to our pets. Recuperation means restoring the animal back to normal health status. By definition, calories are provided by diet. Now, we know it has nothing to do with energy, but providing the pet four recuperation nutrients: glutamine, arginine, taurine and omega-3 fatty acids. Nutrients are important! The animal needs to eat, as 70% of their immune function is located in the intestinal tract. How can we recuperate if the immune system is not functioning? Getting those recuperation nutrients as fast as possible into the gut, must be the first concern of vets and pet owners.


What are the most commonly found deficiencies or quick fixes required for healing and revival post a surgery?

After an illness or a surgery, we know that every animal goes into what we call a catabolic state. They refuse to eat, and start using their own body reserves. The main nutrients lacking in an animal after illness or surgery are: glutamine, arginine, taurine and omega-3 fatty acids.

Do tell us more about VIYO Recuperation, which is recently launched in India.

Viyo Recuperation is a liquid, highly palatable drink that is used after illness or surgery. It contains four key nutrients necessary for recuperation. It is not a diet, as it is not high in calories. So Viyo Recuperation is used at least for the first 24-48 hours when the animal comes out of surgery or illness. This period can be covered with one bottle.

After three days, we should shift to normal diet to provide energy. It is safe to combine Viyo Recuperation with every type of diet not later than three days, in therapeutic diets, especially formulated for renal, heart, liver, skin or any other health problems. The total duration to recuperate is around 14 days.

Viyo Recuperation is proven to work, as in  lot of official published studies and articles. Beside the four recuperation nutrients, it contains pre-biotic fibers (inuline and fructooligsaccharide) to support the immune system and to make the intestinal tract healthy. Finally, we can call Viyo Recuperation the most complete nutraceutical in the market as it contains all essential vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and amino acids for dogs and cats.

There is no other supplement on the market with all in one single product. The best efficacy of a supplementation of nutrients will be seen through a liquid formulation as the nutrients end up faster in the intestinal tract and will be absorbed and used much faster and better. We always say, if you supplement nutrients, use a liquid formulation for better and faster efficacy. Viyo Recuperation is best kept in the fridge once the bottle is opened.

Can this product be purchased off-the-shelf?

Viyo Recuperation is exclusively sold in veterinary clinics.

Palatability is usually a huge problem especially when dealing with pets just coming out of an ailment. How can your producto address this issue?

The key driver for a product used in sick animals or animals coming out of surgery is ´palatability´. We know that those animals eat less (hyporexia) or even refuse to eat (anorexia). Do you know that 40% of hospitalized animals in veterinary clinics refuse to eat? Making a 100% natural product without adding any artificial flavour, colourant or preservative was our big challenge. After nine years, we managed to make one! The company Viyo International is a worldwide leader in making highly palatable, liquid products in an 100% natural way. That is their knowledge and secret!

What are your plans for India, going ahead?

For the moment, Viyo Recuperation will be launched for dogs and cats. Other products will arrive soon on the Indian market for vets and pet owners. This information will be shared with all vets and pet owners once the products become available.

India is a developing market when it comes to pet nutraceuticals as well as pet products, in general. What is the need of the hour?

The need of the Indian market is receiving new knowledge about nutrition in sick and healthy animals in general, and adapt it. If we talk of health issues, we know we can help better with nutrition when faced with diarrhea, chronic kidney disease, urinary stones, liver problems, cancer, pancreatitis or for post-surgical recovery. Geriatric dogs, cats, pups and kittens can also benefit from a nutraceutical like Viyo Recuperation. It is a brand-new concept and product. Nothing like Viyo Recuperation was and is available in the Indian market.

Recommended For You

About the Author: Team NewsOnPets

We are a bunch of hardcore news junkies who also happen to be pet parents. Our world revolves around our kids and that's how we know!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *