One of the signs of a good dog owner is that he gives his dog probiotics. This is not a chemical from the drugstore that weakens the animal’s immune system and kills not only the enemies of the organism but also the useful bacteria that habituate in its digestive system. These are natural pills that help to support the digestive system of a dog and fill the microflora with necessary bacteria.
So, adding probiotics to the dog’s diet would not be a mistake. This article will help you to find out what the modern market for best dog probiotics offers and how to make the right choice.
Purina Pro Plan FortiFlora Probiotics for Dogs
What is the point of using probiotics that are intended to be useful when in reality they would only cause the damage? Purina Fortiflora is a reliable source of protein, fat, fiber and, of course, live microorganisms that will enhance your furry friend’s digestive system. It can also be prescribed by the vet as a remedy from diarrhea. It is not the cheapest option, however, using one sachet a day will inevitably bring about positive changes in your dog’s overall health. Numerous comments prove its quality and health benefits. What is more, the powder format does not bring any suspicions to the dog.
Whole Life Pet Living Treats
Whole Life Pet Living Treats are cheaper because they consist of only three ingredients, which are 100% natural:
- pumpkin puree,
- ground flaxseed
- plain greek yogurt.
Nothing else! Even humans can eat these. Now, obviously, these treats are not predicted to solve serious problems, though they are a perfect fit for doggies with a sensitive stomach. It is minimally processed and gluten-free. Pumpkin and flaxseed heal stomach issues while greek yogurt provides live active bacterias. Their format is extremely comfortable to use while training your dog.
The powder is such a thing that can be easily faked. The producer can include chemicals with unpronounceable names, which you may take as minerals or vitamins. However, the three next products you may choose from are completely safe.
PerHonesty Nutri Dog Probiotic
PerHonesty Nutri dog probiotic has pumpkin, organic mushroom blend, colostrum, digestive enzymes, green tea extract, selenium yeast, taurine, and Tasco kelp. It is proven to prevent runny stools, allergies, and breakouts. Remember that your dog’s health is priceless. As far as they can not choose, it is your duty to give them the best you possibly can.
Power Flora by NutraFitz
This is another great choice. The main advantage of powder probiotics is their format.
High-quality probiotics have no taste or odor, so you can forget about forcing pills into your pet’s mouth. This probiotic requires refrigerating, thus it means that it has no artificial preservatives that keep it fresh. These would be especially helpful after prolonged antibiotics treatment that causes serious damage to the immunity and make an animal vulnerable to outer dangers.
The journey of health begins from the inside – but not from healing the outside symptoms. If your dog struggles with unhealthy stomach and intestinal microflora, or has any other digestive troubles, reviewing its nutrition is the first step to take and adding probiotics is the best choice.
Pet Honesty Chews
The next probiotic is once again by Pet Honesty, but now they come in a form of chews. These have 6 billion CFUs per serving, which is enough to enrich the dog’s organism for the day. The bigger the dog, the more vitamins and minerals it needs. Hence the portion can vary from one to three pieces per day.
These come out a bit cheaper due to the usage of natural ingredients, those are carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, duck meet, and flaxseed. Better digestion means better mood, strong bones, and joints, fluffy fur and skin, as well as happy eyes so pay attention to this offer as well.
The flavor and taste are of major importance for chews. PetHonesty we have already talked about takes care of these factors, as they know that forcing a pet to each a pill is inappropriate.
Another variant of chews is NexPaw probiotics. The form of delicious chews is exactly what a dog might need to keep its gut fully functional. They provide all the necessary components and are not expensive so you can definitely choose them for usage in the long run and it will help you stay out of the Vet’s office. The flavor and scent are dogs’ favorite features of these treats so be sure that your friend will find them quite enjoyable.
Adult dogs are not the only ones to have digestive issues. Probiotics for puppies and older dogs are must-have as well. Senior dogs would be especially in need of them.
- Firstly, they are soft thus easy to cope with for an older dog.
- Secondly, they nourish their bones, joints, skin and fur coat, support proper liver and heart function.
Any kind of medicine, even if it is not antibiotics, weakens the microflora and immune system. Grain-free chewable multivitamin chews for seniors by Strawfield Pets are one of the best options. In addition, they come in different flavors, for instance, bacon, chicken, salmon, beef vegetable.
Ready Pet Go
Another classic probiotic option is Tummy Treats by Ready Pet Go! These have a cheese flavor, which makes the canine look forward to a treat every single day. These contain 500 million CFU Bacillus Coagulans as well as pumpkin seeds. If you wish the same health for your pets as for the rest of your family then this is the best bet.
By the way, some dogs are grass and table food eaters. So a small addition to their ratio will fix probable stomach issues that can occur. Cheese tummy treats fit dogs of all breeds and ages, this is the ultimate product with no side effects detected.
Chews and powder is not the limit, humanity now has invented other forms of probiotics.
Seems like gel is supposed to be rubbed into the skin, but it is actually made to be put in feed or directly into the mouth. It can be tricky, however, do not force it down your pet’s throat. Some customers with picky eaters put a glob on the canine paw and let them lick it. One gram of Bene-Bac Plus pet gel has 20 million of natural microorganisms. It is a perfect match for all domestic home mammals out there.
This list includes but is not limited to newborn puppies, senior canines, raccoons, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits. The tube package makes it comfortable to use while traveling.
Pills are another variant. This format of probiotics seems suspicious, as we often associate pills with antibiotics which seriously weaken immunity and digestion. However, this is an exception. If the format of pills frightens you, then feel free to sprinkle the powder from the pill on pet’s food. Another advantage is that Proviable-DC by Nutramax does not only have 7 strains of bacteria but also prebiotics, which are complex carbohydrates that serve as food for bacteria. This is a huge benefit as it means that bacteria will grow faster within the walls of the gut, thus it will bring positive changes faster.
A Short But Yet Useful Guide to Probiotics
So, you already know a lot about the goods you may choose for your pet, however, there are still some issues you should discover to make the right choice.
Who Should Buy Dog Probiotics?
Judging from this article you might feel like there are no disadvantages of giving your animal probiotics. It is imperative to consult the vet to find out if probiotics are effective for your four-pawed friend.
What is more, you should know the difference between probiotics and prebiotic supplements. Probiotics are created to help the gut bacteria to digest food, while prebiotics is basically food for those bacterias. If you feed your pet with pet foods, like dry or wet treats, then the animal might need additional help. However, if you feed it with homemade freshly cooked meals, then maybe your dog does not simply need them.
There is such a thing as SIBO which is an excess amount of bacteria. Its appearance can have a few reasons: high-carbohydrate and high-sugar diet, or it can be the result of the intake of the drugs.
How do you know that the dog has it?
The main symptoms are diarrhea, rapid weight loss, meteorism, food intolerance, problematic skin, leaky gut. If a bunch of these symptoms is vibrantly pronounced at your dog, it is high time to meet the veterinarian. Using probiotics while having SIBO will definitely not bring any benefit.
The most common scenario when you would buy canine probiotics is after a prolonged period of taking antibiotics or any other type of medicine. The gut is where health starts. To make your doggy up and going again you need to activate the useful bacteria again to let the gut and intestine function flawlessly work.
Senior and little puppies can also be potential consumers of probiotic probiotic supplements. Old pups need help to improve the existing system, while young puppies need some help in its forming. Some scientists argue that giving probiotics in such an early age can bring about early interference into the immune and digestive system which has not even formed yet.
No worries here, you can always choose harmless fully natural probiotic treats, which can only consist of Greek yogurt, pumpkin, and flaxseed, which would perform their function in the young organism just as great.
Features to Consider
First and foremost, there are some differences in the type of probiotics available.
- Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium come from dairy products and play the main role in dairy-based probiotics. It is common knowledge that dairy is not the dog’s product. Lactobacilli are a common reason for allergies, as far as they are made of fermented milk. That is why they require refrigeration. They are pretty fragile and it has been proved by science that they do not survive in the dog’s stomach for long periods. However, the lack of these bacterias can bring about anxiety and diarrhea.
- Saccharomyces boulardii are what antibiotics cannot kill which makes them efficient in protecting the gut. If your canine has chronic inflammation, yeast-based probiotic supplements would most probably help.
- Soil-based. Soil sounds weird if talking about dog food, but it is as it is. These often have organic plant probiotic ingredients like dandelion and burdock root.
Another important feature to consider is its form. This article proved that probiotics come in many many different forms.
- Powders are convenient to mix with dog food. However, there is a higher risk that the producer has put some foreign components, which is definitely not supposed to b present in the dog’s probiotics. Those ingredients are grains, potato or corn starch, vegetable oil, artificial preservatives, food colorings or taste enhancers.
- Chewy treats would be a better option if your furry friend is not a picky eater. Chews are usually made appealing to dogs by adding artificial taste and smell enhancers. Of course, the scent of bacon, salmon or chicken is more attractive for dogs. Beware of such flavors, as cheese, sour cream and greenery, shrimp and other suspicious flavors, as they are most probably enriched with chemicals.
- The gel can be better for senior canines as it does not require any chewing. This is the best form for dogs who are already tired of taking medicines in the form of a pill or powder since gell doesn’t provoke negative associations.
- Pills are quite effective too. They usually come in a digestive protective coating so no stomach acid is a threat to them and they act in the intestine itself. Do not force the dog to swallow the pill or gel if it does not want to. Sacrifice some beneficial features of these formats but do not cause any stress to the animal. Find sideways, like sprinkling the powder from the pill on the food or putting gel onto the paw to let the dog lick it.
FAQs & Answers To Burning Questions About Probiotics
In case you still have some questions, we are answering the most common ones.
Can Dogs Eat Human Probiotics?
Yes, they can, but should they? Bacteria in the human gut is not the same as in dog. There has not been proper research made to prove that human probiotics are no threat to dogs. You can think of it as a commercial step to launch probiotic for dogs and humans supplements separately. But a lot of veterinarians tend to think that people and dogs should have their own probiotics. Human probiotics are usually made of fermented milk. Although there is a type of dairy-based probiotics which have their own benefits, milk is not as easily digestible in dogs as it is in humans.
Do Probiotics Really Work For Dogs?
They do, but they are not a probiotic miracle pill. Obviously, you can not fix all of the pup’s health problems with probiotics. But it is a scientifically-backed fact that they strengthen the immunity and gut function. The common signs indicating that your four-legged friend is in need of probiotic supplements are constant whining, diarrhea, bad breath, constant scratching, anxiety, lethargic behavior, sniffing, pacing, infection in the ears or eyes, unhealthy-looking or itchy skin. Probiotics are only advantageous if made of organic products and used wisely. 20 million bacterias per serving are the minimum amount of microorganisms that an efficient probiotic must contain. The optimal number of strains is ten. Also, make sure that they meet all manufacturing requirements.
Can Dogs Overdose On Probiotics?
Pet parents are supplementing their dogs and cats with probiotics with a belief that they are extremely beneficial and can not harm even after an overdose. Mostly right. But it is possible that the dog will find the pills and eat all of them at once. Of course, it can be a shock to the organism. But if your canine does not have any digestive issues, the only side effect would be diarrhea. To ensure that no unexpected mishap would happen, supplement your pet with only 100% natural probiotics for dogs.