Probiotics, as we know, are friendly bacteria living in the digestive tract. They can be of huge benefit for your dog’s digestive health. Some of them reside in the small intestine while some bacteria reside in the large intestine. Probiotics are basically good bacteria whose balance is important for your dog’s health.
What Probiotics Do for Dogs
- Probiotics have numerous benefits like fighting off pathogens, making nutrients and vitamins and strengthen the immune system. If your dog falls ill often, then probiotics might be the right choice for your dog. Probiotics are believed to help treat or prevent illnesses which are related to the gastrointestinal tract or the gut.
- Probiotics relieve constipation and irritable bowel syndrome. They minimize allergy symptoms as they strengthen the immune system. Probiotics also prevent upper respiratory infections in dogs. They also help dogs to achieve a healthy bone density by improving mineral metabolism.
- The dog’s coat and skin health are also improved by taking probiotics. Yeast infections are also cured leading to healthier skin. They also help in the removal of toxins from the body. Probiotics also provide necessary chemicals which are required for manufacturing biotin, folic acid, and group B vitamins.
- Probiotics also stimulate immunity on a cellular and humoral level, which would help dogs to protect themselves against any infections.
- The risk of heart diseases is also minimized as probiotics lower the cholesterol.
- Probiotics also keep hormone levels balanced and reduce the risk of urinary tract infections in female dogs. They also help reduce various food intolerances.
When Should a Dog Be Given a Probiotic?
Probiotics can be taken in several forms such as Yogurt, powders, capsules, chews and various dog foods.
Some people believe that probiotics should be given to dogs when they’re sick or have an upset stomach. They can also be given at times when your dog is under stress or on antibiotics.
However, it is believed that probiotics should be an essential part of your dog’s diet. Probiotic foods can do the needful here.
Probiotics are also recommended as an alternative once in a while if your dog is taking antibiotics. They limit the damage done by antibiotics. Giving probiotics to your dog two hours after each antibiotic dose is a good idea to reverse the damage done by these doses.
Multivitamins for Dogs
Today more and more dog owners are increasingly giving multivitamins to their dogs as well. However, it is important to understand if your dog really needs a supplement.
Most of the commercially produced dog foods contain all the necessary vitamins and minerals. So, the dog does receive a balanced diet.
Does Your Dog Really Need These Multivitamins?
If your dog already gets a balanced diet, then the excess vitamins and minerals could be harmful to him.
Too much of these can cause various different problems in dogs. Too much calcium causes skeletal problems whereas too much Vitamin A can cause joint pains and dehydration. Excess of Vitamin D can harm a dog’s bones.
If your dog gets a proper diet and is healthy then he might not need any supplements.
Multivitamins Can Be Necessary If
However, there might be a need for supplements if you notice symptoms of poor health conditions in your dog. If your dog is diagnosed with a deficiency then the dog should be getting a specific vitamin.
Also, in cases where dogs eat home-prepared foods, adding a vitamin may seem necessary. However, consult a veterinary nutritionist before doing so.
If your dog does not eat well, then adding a multivitamin could be a good option to help ward off any deficiencies in your pooch.
Before giving your dog these, the owners should have proper information on the probiotic. There are certainly a lot of benefits when it comes to probiotics. It would improve your dog’s overall health and immunity! So, if you feel the need, go consult your vet and get your dog some probiotics.