Dogs, like all mammals, are similar to humans in many fundamental ways. While animal diets are frequently less varied than human diets, good nutrition is still important to ensure your furry friend is always in good health. That is why the role of probiotics in dogs cannot be overstated and they are as important for canines as they are for humans.
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A diet of kibble can be sufficient for most dogs, but it’s only natural to want the best possible health solutions, especially with the recent trends toward natural, organic eating. For owners who want to do what’s absolutely best for their four-legged family members, canine probiotics can support a healthy lifestyle, making it more likely that Fido will be with you for a long time to come.
Dogs Need Probiotics Too!
As in humans, probiotics refer to the living bacteria within the digestive tract. These colonies of good bacteria are an essential part of digestion, helping food break down in the stomach and stimulating absorption of vitamins and nutrients in the intestines. This bacteria is good and healthy; improper levels can lead to serious issues in extracting the necessary nutrition from consumed food and prompting food to pass normally through the body. When internal levels are unstable, most doctors and vets recommend probiotic supplements to restore normal functioning, rebuilding and restoring normal bacteria levels, especially when strong antibiotics are are necessary.
Digestive health issues can be very common in many dog breeds, and may not be instantly recognizable. These problems have many causes, including illness and a poor diet, but any symptoms should be a cause for concern. Dogs have a tendency to eat a wide variety of things not necessarily good or healthy, making the changes in the digestive process possible in every breed. Frequent symptoms, including signs like vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea, may be easily missed by owners or confused for other common conditions. Digestive problems, however, can be very serious, leading to long-term health problems if not treated. Treatment options vary, but many vets see the value in probiotics for restoring normal balance.
The Benefits of Probiotics
Probiotics offer many benefits for both humans and animals. When dogs show signs of digestive issues, many vets recommend probiotics, whether alone or in conjunction with a course of antibiotics. Available in many forms, like Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, Streptococcus, and Enterococcus, probiotics enhance the good bacteria in the stomach, colon, and intestines, lowering internal pH, removing toxins, and making it harder for bad bacteria to further cause issues in the digestive process. Probiotics can also be used to produce digestive enzymes, enhance the health of the cells in the tissue of the digestive tract, and boost the functioning of the immune system.
When Do Dogs Need Probiotics?
If your dog has a history of healthy immune and digestive functions, probiotics can be helpful but are not a necessity. Animals with illnesses or frequent symptoms related to digestive distress, however, can benefit strongly from probiotics, whether on a regular basis or for use when symptoms occur. Be sure to read all dosage information and ask your vet for recommendations; not all probiotics are made equal, and a professional can help you identify which products and areas of the digestive tract require attention. Some products require refrigeration or must be taken with food, so ensure proper preparation is in place before beginning a probiotic regiment.
Your pet is a member of your family, and his health is just as important as your own. When you’re concerned about your dog’s digestive health or simply want to take a preventative approach to disease, probiotics for dogs offer many benefits. From boosting healthy bacteria in the body to promoting a strong immune system, canine probiotics can go a long way in making sure your pup has the best life possible.
Disclaimer: the advice and information in this article is not intended to be used as a replacement for professional medical advice from a veterinarian.