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10 signs your dog may need canine probiotics

10 signs your dog may need canine probiotics

We all want what’s best for our pets but often overlook digestive health and don’t realise its importance for their overall wellbeing. Like humans, a balanced gut is paramount to general health, and probiotics are an excellent tool for establishing this healthy balance of bacteria.

If your dog requires probiotics, they may display symptoms such as cramping, diarrhoea, or a foul odour. Understanding these signs and symptoms is the first step to aiding your dog to their best health and wellbeing.

This article will explore the how and why of probiotics, the science behind the products, and common signs that you should incorporate canine probiotics into your dog’s diet.

Canine digestive health

The importance of the digestive system in overall health and wellbeing is often overlooked, but the gut is a critical factor in overall health. The key role of the digestive system is to break down food into nutrients. These nutrients fuel your dog in many ways. For example:

  • They give your dog energy
  • They help maintain healthy cells
  • They encourage healthy growth
  • They boost the immune system
  • They help to repair damaged cells
  • They aid in hormone and neurotransmitter production

Vets and other professionals often refer to the digestive system as the dog’s “gut microbiome,” which refers to the vast collection of microbes (bacteria, fungi, viruses, etc) within the gut. Maintaining a healthy balance of these microbes is essential for a healthy digestive system and, ultimately, a healthy canine.

For example, your dog’s gut contains trillions of microscopic bacteria, also known as gut flora, and ensuring that your canine has an adequate amount of good bacteria is essential for healthy gut flora.

The role of canine probiotics

While a balanced diet will help your dog maintain healthy gut flora, they can benefit from using probiotics to supplement good bacteria.

Probiotics are live bacteria that promote intestinal health. They do this by lowering the pH level in the gut, which helps your canine’s naturally healthy bacteria thrive. Probiotics can also support your dog’s digestive system by attaching themselves to the walls of the intestines and encouraging the growth of healthy bacteria.

Research has demonstrated that the benefits of canine probiotics are vast; supplementing them into your dog’s diet could help with any or all of the following:

  • Aid digestion and promote healthy gut flora
  • Keep the intestines healthy by fighting harmful bacteria
  • Provide relief from irritable bowels or diarrhoea
  • Reduce allergic reactions
  • Prevent urinary tract infections
  • Combat anxiety
  • Improve your dog’s coat and combat skin diseases
  • Fight against liver disease
  • Help your dog to maintain a healthy weight

While most canine probiotics are safe for dogs, they can have side effects, such as temporarily increasing symptoms such as bloating or diarrhoea. If symptoms persist, contact your veterinarian.

Additionally, you should not give probiotics to dogs with immunocompromised systems before consulting with your vet.

dog probiotics benefits

Signs your dog needs canine probiotics

1. Diarrhoea or constipation

Frequent diarrhoea or constipation often indicates an imbalance in your canine’s gut microbiome. If harmful bacteria dominate your dog’s stomach, the outcome is loose faeces, a sign that your dog requires a healthy dose of good bacteria to balance their gut health. Canine probiotics can provide the beneficial bacteria to achieve this balance.

2. Vomiting

Vomiting is another sign that your dog’s gut is imbalanced. Additionally, a vomiting dog may lose more good bacteria as they eliminate substances from their stomach. Providing them with a healthy dose of dog probiotics can help restore balance and combat nausea.

3. Flatulence and bloating

Flatulence and bloating occur when gas builds up in the intestinal tract and colon. Common causes of this are a change in diet or your dog eating something they shouldn’t have. Flatulence can also occur when your dog struggles to digest certain foods, such as beans, fatty foods, or milk products. Canine probiotics introduce healthy bacteria to aid digestion and relieve symptoms such as bloating or cramps. 

4. Bad breath

Bad breath is often caused by plaque or tartar build-ups around your dog’s teeth and gums. Restoring good bacteria in the mouth is an excellent way to combat this. Additionally, bad breath can stem from gastrointestinal upsets; using canine probiotics is a great way to address gut health.

5. Weight issues

You may notice your dog suddenly gaining or losing weight, even though their diet and exercise routine haven’t changed. This could be because they struggle with nutrient absorption, meaning their digestive system cannot extract all of the goodness from their food – leading to weight loss, lethargy, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Additionally, if your dog stops eating, it’s a good indicator that something is wrong.

6. Skin issues

Poor digestive health doesn’t just affect your dog internally; they will also display a range of external symptoms, such as dry or flaky skin. This is because an imbalance of unhealthy bacteria in your dog’s microbiome can lead to yeast build-ups, which present as red blotches on their skin. 

7. Scratching

Due to the yeast build-ups that cause dry and flaky skin, it’s common to see an increase in scratching if your dog requires probiotics. Excessive scratching can also occur if your canine has a bacterial or fungal skin infection. Dog probiotics can help reduce infection by boosting the immune system. 

8. Allergies

Scratching can also stem from food allergies; introducing healthy enzymes can strengthen the digestive system and increase your dog’s resilience to certain food allergies. 

9. Stress or anxiety

The body is one system where every individual cell and organ is linked, meaning poor digestive health can affect every other organ in your dog’s body, including the brain. Just as the brain can send signals to the stomach, the opposite is also true, which means an unbalanced microbiome can cause your dog to feel stressed or anxious.

10. Bad odour  

A foul odour emanating from your dog is a sign of a bacterial imbalance. Suppose the gut microbiome contains too many harmful bacteria. In that case, the odour they eliminate can be absorbed into the bloodstream and make its way out of your dog through stinking breath, flatulence, stools, or body odour.

What dog probiotics should I use?

With so many products on the market, figuring out the right product can be challenging. That’s why Pet Chemist provides an Australian-made health supplement for dogs of all ages. Nature’s Paw Probiotic & Prebiotic Digestive Supplement For Dogs & Cats is a high-strength, multi-strain probiotic designed to stimulate digestive health in dogs and cats.

Formulated by veterinarians and pet nutritionists, Nature’s Paw Probiotics boost healthy bacteria and modulate the immune system to benefit your dog’s digestive health and overall wellness.

Plus, they are a good source of dietary fibre and contain added vegetable powder to combat nutrition gaps within your dog’s diet.

Nature’s Paw Probiotic for dogs and cats comes with a 14 day money-back guarantee. So why not give it a try, and see the benefits?

Nature's Paw Probiotic for Dogs


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