Probiotics for dogs

 The good diet is the base of overall good health for human or for animals.

 When you watch health related TV shows, or read health related articles, now and then, you would come across the article or TV segment regarding friendly bacteria in the gut and benefit of getting probiotics and the yogurt (Plain one, not the sugary flavored yogurt or yogurt with fruits on the bottom) is often recommended for people to have them for the healthy diet.

 When you start learning more about healthy diet for dogs, you would also hear the benefit of giving gut friendly bacteria through supplement “probiotics”.

 For dogs, especially those who had digestive upset issues, supplement “probiotics” is recommended to give them rather than store bought yogurt. It is because the number of gut friendly bacteria,namely, acidophilus present more in the dietary supplement than store bought yogurt.

 Now, what is “probiotics” anyway?

Acidophilus plus..

 The probiotics are the live gut friendly bacterias to help support the balance of the bacterias in the gut when dogs got digestive upset and offset the balance of “good” and “bad” bacterias via diet,stress (moving,new environment,diet change),  or via antibiotic treatment, which kills gut friendly bacteria and need to restore the balance of the “good” and “bad” bacteria in the gut during and after the antibiotic treatment.

 If your dogs were put on antibiotic treatment and your dog has experienced digestive upset, it is because antibiotic kills the good bacteria to heal the infection.

 That is when you need to give good probiotics to your dogs during and after the antibiotic treatment to help balance the good” and “bad bacteria in the gut.

 The most well know strain of bacteria as “gut friendly bacteria” is called acidphilus and,you can also find the same bacteria in the store bought yogurt although live culture number is much smaller in the yogurt.

 If you do feed raw diet to your dogs, Green tripe also contains acidophilus as well,although number of good bacterias might be less than dietary supplement “probiotics” can offer.

 Because of how acidophilus works when certain situations occur, it is helpful to give probiotics to your dog when they happened to be under the situation that might trigger the digestive upset before they experience miserable digestive upset experience.

 If your dogs were gassy, sometimes, it is the sign of indigestion and giving probiotics to them also could help them to digest the food in the question better.

 I remember Palette was quite gassy when she was on kibble as a puppy.

 Every time she stretched out her boddy by running up the stairs, standing on her hind legs,putting her paws on the table, we heard her cute “toot”.

 Sometimes, when she was gassy,it accompanied with vomit on the floor as well.

 Some people give probiotics daily,but personally I give/gave probiotic to Palette when I was trying to switch her from kibble diet to fresh food diet,a.k.a. raw diet until she could handle the raw diet menu on her own,plus when she was on antibiotic treatment,and whenever she had digestive upset.

 When she was on antibiotic treatment, our lady vet told us to keep her on probiotics for 3-4 days after the treatment as well but it was not enough for her to fully digest food on her own without digestive upset. For her, she needed during and 30 more days after the treatment was over.

 If your dogs were put on antibiotic treatment make sure to keep them on probiotics as well until they can fully digest the food served to them on their own.

 What are the benefit of giving probiotics to your dogs?

 For starter, giving probiotics is to keep their “good” and “bad bacteria” balance in check and to restore the balance of the “good” bacteria and “bad” bacteria in the gut.

 Besides that, what probiotics can do?

 These beneficial bacteria like acidophilus can out compete the bacteria like e-coli,salmonella etc, and prevent them from colonizing in the gut.

 Also, these friendly bacteria produce Lactic acid,which increase the acidity level in the large intestine,which is not a good environment for pathogenic bacteria but good environment for good enzyme activity.

 Elizabeth and Laura suggests that for probiotics to be able to survive and reach to the intestine to do their jobs, best way to provide probiotics to your dog is to give probiltic in high concentration; larger number of bacterias such as billions,millions of bacterias.

 This is the reason why food source like  yogurt might not be as effective as you may think.

 How probiotics is measured?

 According to the article written by Elizabeth Pask and Laura Scott for the modern dog magazine, the probiotics is measured by number of Colont-Forming-Unit (CFU) per gram of probiotics.

 Therefore, their suggestion for purchasing the good probiotics is to look for the one with billions,millions of CFU per gram.

 To read the full article by Elizabeth Pask,and Laura Scott for The Modern Dog Magazine, please click here.

 What types of probiotics you should get for your dogs?

 When you start looking around what form of probiotics are available, you would notice there are liquid type, powder form, and gel type of probiotic.

 Some probiotics,most often liquid type of probiotic require refrigeration once it has been opened.

 As Elizabeth and Laura wrote in their article,I would look for the one with large number of probiotic.

 Besides that rule, personally,I prefer to have product that got simple ingredient list rather than length ingredients in the list.Because each was described as good amount of bacteria in the products, I tried once even if it had longer ingredients list but now I think for Palette, herself, does much better with least number of ingredients in the list.

 What I give to Palette for long time as staple now is “Acidophilus plus” from pet authority,and it has only 5 ingredients as shown below.

 Since Palette does great on it and I liked it very much and using it long enough, I started carrying it at Yassy’s Gourmet Dog Kitchen as well. You can find the product here.

 People tend to think “more” is better but I rather think that simple is better with good concentrated number of good bacteria in the ingredients list without fillers.

 Personally, I have tried all 3 forms.

 As a puppy, I got Palette powder formed probiotics.Its advantage is to be able to keep them at room temperature and looked lasts longer. Plus it was described as it got 100 millions of bacteria in CFU.

 However, when I gave it to her, the digestive upset did not improve but rather, worsen and I stopped giving it to her. Maybe she did not do good with whatever was in the ingredients list.

 That particular one had ingredients as shown below:

Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation
Product, Dried
Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried bacillus subtilis
Fermentation Product, Dried Yeast(Saccharomyces Cerevisiae), Dried
Whey

  Another
one I have tried was gel type probiotic which you are supposed to give
certain amount of probiotics through the pen style syringe.

 Here is the list of ingredients:

Sunflower Oil,
Silicon Dioxide, Sucrose, Fructooligosaccharide, Dried Lactobacillus
casei fermentation product, Dried Lactobacillus fermentum fermentation
product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophils fermentation product, Dried
Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, Dried Enterococcus faecium
fermentation product, Dried Bifidobacterium bifidum fermentation
product, Dried Pediococcus acidilactici fermentation product.

 I tried this gel one just because it said to have 20 billions of bacteria in CFU,and it did healed Palette’s digestive upset quite fast. However, when I gave it to her, she was very farty. 

 At
this moment, I am settled with Acidophilus plus because short
ingredient list,works well with Palette and does not make her farty.

 The Acidoplhilus plus ingredients list as shown below;

Triple Filtered spring water,Lactobacillus acidophilus cultures,Yucca,Papaya puree,Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid)

 Acidophilus plus needs to be refrigerated once bottle is opened. This is dairy free products.It does not say specific number but, it states it has lactobacillus acidophilus cultures and it got billions of friendly active micro organism.

 Some
companies offer zillions of strains of bacterias in the supplements and
say that they are for good but sometimes, more is not necessary be
better. Personally, I prefer to have something that are short simple
list for the ingredients and has good number of acidophilus in it. In addition to that,I prefer the one our dog does good on.

  When it comes to digestive upset for dogs, people often talk about giving pumpkin for the quick fix. However, is it the good move?

 When you think about it, when digestive upset occur, it happens due to imbalance of “good” and “bad” bacteria and, giving fiber like “pumpkin” can fix visually but how about internally?

 This is only my personal opinion but, when dogs are experiencing digestive upset, giving good bacteria back into their gut seems more reasonable to me.

 Also, when your dog experiencing digestive upset, be sure to find why he/she is experiencing the digestive upset.

 Otherwise, as long as whatever cause does exists, the digestive upset can happen over and over again until you will fix the cause of the problems.

 Quick fix like giving pumpkin looks fine visually but, it is just that “quick visual fix” and as long as problem is there, digestive upset continues and nothing improves overall.

 Do you give probiotics to your dogs?

 If so,what forms of probiotics;liquid,powder,gel, do you give and why?

Feb 05, 2014 | 0 | Dog Diet

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