Did you know that a study published in the Journal of Animal Science found that dogs that have been given probiotics had lower levels of harmful bacteria in their intestines and showed improved digestive function?
A healthy gut usually means a healthy pup, so it is widely known that probiotics are among the most important compounds that promote health and longevity in dogs.
Let’s find out some of the main reasons why your dog needs probiotics!
11 Reasons Why Your Dog Needs Probiotics
Dog probiotics are friendly bacteria that keep their gut healthy. But not only that, probiotics can help to support the immune system function of our lovely canine companions. This means that they can also help to reduce inflammation and promote overall health.
There are so many benefits to why your dog needs probiotics, so let’s mention the most important ones!
1. Ease Tummy Troubles
As we have already mentioned, probiotics are healthy gut bacteria that help promote better digestion. If you notice your dog is acting weird or having loose, watery stools, then he may suffer from tummy troubles.
Probiotics come to the rescue to restore and maintain the healthy balance of microorganisms in the dog’s stomach.
2. Happy Belly, Happy Pup – Gut Health Affects Behavior
Probiotics promote a balanced gut microbiome which significantly improves a dog’s mood and reduces stress, leading to happier and more relaxed vibes.
Dogs with healthy stomachs will have normal poop color and consistency, and won’t suffer from belly aches and other GI troubles.
3. Prevent Bacterial Imbalances And Gut Issues
Every dog has good and bad bacteria inside their gut. There are times when harmful bacteria outweigh the natural, good ones.
This happens when certain gastrointestinal issues appear, such as excessive flatulence, dietary intolerance, food allergies, and chronic diseases.
Administering probiotics helps the dog’s stomach restore its natural microbiome which helps treat and prevent gut issues.
4. Relieve Stress And Sickness
If you see your dog panting in the car and acting like he’s about to throw up, then giving him some probiotics prior to your next trip may be a good idea.
Probiotics help with sickness because they reduce inflammation in the gut, which helps to alleviate symptoms of diarrhea and vomiting.
5. Relieve Symptoms Of Chronic Gastrointestinal Disorders
Probiotics help relieve your pup of chronic gastrointestinal problems because they reduce inflammation and help deal with diarrhea and tummy aches.
The fact that they help the dog’s gut to digest food more effectively, makes it easier for the good stuff to be absorbed and makes the symptoms of chronic GI distress easier.
Read Next: How Long Can A Dog Go Without Pooping? Reasons & Remedies
6. Prevent Antibiotics Side Effects
When dogs are put on antibiotic therapy, they can experience side effects such as diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. This happens because antibiotics not only target and kill bad bacteria but also kill beneficial bacteria in the pup’s gut.
This is when probiotics step in, offering live beneficial bacterial cultures that help restore the good bacteria in the gut that have been previously killed by antibiotics.
So, diarrhea and vomiting miraculously disappear and your dog starts feeling better in no time!
7. Probiotics Aid Ear Infections
Believe it or not, dog probiotics are not only beneficial for the dog’s stomach. Besides restoring healthy bacteria within the gut, probiotics help fight off dog ear infections by boosting the dog’s immune system.
A healthy immune system helps them fight off infections and illnesses more effectively which is essential for fighting off ear infections.
If the ear infection is mild, administering probiotics can reduce the need for antibiotics in the future and further reduce the likelihood of antibiotic side effects.
8. Good For Senior Pup’s Health
As our beloved furry friends age, their digestive system becomes less efficient, and they may be more susceptible to infections and illnesses.
Moreover, senior pups may suffer from chronic age-related illnesses and they are more likely to have a weakened immune system. You know what this calls for? Probiotic super heroes!
Probiotics help kick chronic conditions such as arthritis to the curb and they help manage these conditions by reducing inflammation and promoting overall health.
9. Probiotics May Reduce Skin Allergies
Less scratching, more petting, what dog wouldn’t want that?
When your dog suffers from a skin allergy, he frequently scratches himself and his skin often develops scabs, crusts, and small wounds.
These magical compounds reduce the number of bad bacteria and promote the number of good bacteria which prevents secondary bacterial infections that can be a result of infected lesions.
This reduces skin inflammation, scratching, and other skin allergy symptoms. A good idea would be to take your dog to the vet for allergy testing before giving him antibiotics.
10. Promote Healthier Teeth
Your dog’s mouth is the first part of his gastrointestinal tract.
Probiotics can help balance the number of good and bad bacteria in your dog’s mouth, reducing the likelihood of bad breath.
Due to the fact that these magical compounds help boost their immune system, dogs with probiotics successfully fight off infections and illnesses that can lead to dental problems.
11. Promote Healthier Coat And Skin
Due to the fact that probiotics help strengthen the dog’s immune system, they help promote healthy and shiny skin.
Because probiotics help your dog’s intestines to absorb the essential nutrients they need from their food, they are more likely to have a shiny and healthy coat.
In addition to administering probiotics, it is also important to maintain good grooming habits, such as regular brushing and bathing.
How Do You Know If Your Dog Needs Probiotics?
Your dog needs probiotics if he is experiencing frequent digestive problems like:
- Excessive flatulence
These are the most common signs that indicate there’s something wrong with your dog’s gut. Probiotics step in to restore and improve the function of their digestive tract.
When it comes to their coat and skin, your dog will benefit from probiotics if he has:
- Scabs (around the mouth, on his back or abdomen)
- Wounds and lesions
- Dull coat
- Hair loss (around the eyes, across the neck, on the abdomen)
You should give your dog probiotics if he is currently, or has been recently on antibiotics to help his stomach restore the good gut bacteria and prevent him from having diarrhea.
Along with essential macronutrients and vitamins, probiotics help a dog’s weakened immune system by giving it a boost. It serves as a great supplement in fighting off diseases, infections, stress, chronic, and acute conditions.
If you notice any of these signs in your dog, you should consult your veterinarian about using probiotics. A licensed DVM will help you determine the best course of action for your dog’s needs.
Should You Give Your Dog A Probiotic Daily?
You can give your dog a fair share of probiotics on a daily basis. However, you have to keep in mind that giving a huge amount of probiotics can be bad for your dog.
Also, different dog breeds need different amounts of these supplements, so it is important to consider your dog’s size and needs.
Small Dogs 1 teaspoon/day
Medium Dogs 2 teaspoons/day
Large Dogs 3 teaspoons/day
Note that probiotics do not necessarily have to be in the form of store-bought pills or powder.
You can give your dog some yogurt as a natural alternative because it is full of good bacterial cultures.
But, keep in mind that many dairy products such as blue cheese or milk are not good for dogs and should be avoided.
There are plenty of reasons why your dog needs probiotics – they are like little superheroes for your dog’s gut!
Probiotics help to boost the good bacteria in the gut and keep the bad guys in check. This helps your pooch fight off various infections and illnesses, which also helps extend his lifespan!
However, it is important to note that while probiotics can be very beneficial for many dogs, they are not a replacement for veterinary care.
If you notice your beloved furry friend is experiencing digestive or other health issues, it is very important to consult with a veterinarian to figure out what the underlying cause may be and help develop an appropriate treatment plan.