Did you know that probiotics have the same positive effects for our dogs’ pet health as they do for us?
Veterinarians prescribe probiotics for dogs all the time—not only for sick patients suffering from an upset belly, but for overall wellness and pet health too.
To understand why probiotics for dogs are so beneficial when it comes to dog nutrition and to learn the positive effects they can have, let’s discuss how probiotics work in your pet’s body.
What Are Probiotics for Dogs?
According to Alison Birken, DVM, owner of Victoria Park Animal Hospital, your pet’s digestive system is home to billions of bacteria that actually keep the gastrointestinal tract healthy.
The term “probiotics” refers to these gastrointestinal-dwelling microbes (bacteria and yeasts) that are beneficial to pet health. These friendly microbes aid in the digestion of food, fight off potential disease, make nutrients and vitamins and bolster the immune system.
Probiotics for dogs are prescribed as supplements, in the form of a powder, capsule, chew, liquid or spray; however, dogs can get probiotics from their dog food as well.
These probiotics are living microorganisms that are very similar to the friendly bacteria that reside in your pet’s digestive tract.
How Do Probiotics for Dogs Work?
A healthy gastrointestinal tract involves a balance of “good” and “bad” bacteria. An imbalance (more “bad” than “good”) can result in illness such as diarrhea, vomiting, suppressed immunity and an upset stomach. That’s why probiotics for dogs are an important part of pet nutrition.
By supplementing your pet’s diet with probiotics, you are boosting the amount of good bacteria that competes with the harmful bacteria for nutrients and intestinal binding sites. This helps the immune system fight off disease. Once the “good” and “bad” bacteria balance has been restored, your pet’s clinical signs resolve, and she will start to feel much better.
How to Choose Dog Food With Probiotics
While daily probiotics use is highly suggested for dogs with chronic digestive issues, such as irritable bowel syndrome and neoplasia, many healthy dogs can benefit from daily supplementation as well. Sometimes this is best achieved by including probiotics into your dog's diet.
Here are some dog foods that feature high quality probiotics for dogs in the formulation:
Diamond Naturals Dog Food
Each recipe from Diamond Naturals, including their beef and rice formula, is enhanced with patented and powerful proprietary K9 Strain probiotics for digestive and immune system support. While it's true that improper manufacturing methods can lead to inactive probiotic cultures in the final product, the formulation featured in Diamond Naturals' food has guaranteed live and active cultures—about 80 million colony forming units (CFU), to be exact.
The company processes their cultures under strict quality and safety standards to ensure purity, so you can feel confident that your dog is getting high quality probiotics.
CANIDAE All Life Stages Dog Food
During manufaturing, CANIDAE applies their Healthplus Solutions formula to every kibble. This premium blend includes a premium blend of probiotics, antioxidants and omega 3- and -6 fatty acids. To ensure the integrity of the ingredients remain intact, Healthplus Solutions is added to CANIDAE dog foods once the food is already cooked.
Taste of the Wild Dog Food
Taste of the Wild features high quality probiotics for dogs processed under strict quality and safety standards. They are thoughtfully added to the end of the cooking process to ensure the viability of the probiotics. Their proprietary K9 Strain probiotics are species-specific, so they are derived from probiotic bacteria strains native to the digestive tract of a dog.
Nowadays our standards for pet care and dog nutrition are second to none. Just as we want the best nutrition, health and care for ourselves and loved ones, we want the same for our beloved fur babies.
We routinely supplement our own diets with probiotics to help boost our immune system, and to feel healthy and strong. So it’s only natural to give them to our pups as part of complete pet nutrition.
As always, your veterinarian is the best resource for the health and well-being of your pet, so be sure to contact her for any health questions or concerns.