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Would Your Dog Benefit from Probiotics?

Would Your Dog Benefit from Probiotics?

Probiotics have become a buzzword in the health industry, often associated with benefits for digestive health and immune function. But did you know that your retriever might also benefit from these beneficial bacteria? Yes, I’m talking about probiotics for dogs. Just like humans, retrievers have a complex community of microorganisms, or microbiota, that live in their gut. These microorganisms play a crucial role in your dog’s overall health.

We always use Pro-kolin made by Protexin whenever our pups have had poorly tummies and it really seems to speed up the recovery. It has saved us a lot of money in vet visits as we always have one in stock so can start using it as soon as a serious upset arises. This is generally what they give you at the vet anyway so we save on the cost of a vet bill. One less visit to the vet reduces stress on an already poorly dog. Of course that is not to say don’t go to the vet if you suspect something major. 

What Are Probiotics for Dogs?

Dog probiotics are specific strains of live bacteria that are beneficial for a dog’s health. They are similar to the type of probiotics that humans take, but they are specially formulated to suit a dog’s unique gut microbiota. It’s important to note that not all probiotics are created equal. The probiotics that are beneficial for humans might not have the same effect on dogs. That’s why it’s essential to choose a probiotic supplement that is specifically designed for dogs.

 

Are Probiotics Popular for Dogs?

Using some web scraping software (jungle scout) I took a look to see what people are buying on Amazon in the UK. It shows Dog owners are clearly buying in to the idea that they are good for your dog. Bellow you can see the top sellers on Amazon UK (as of July 2023)  are selling up to 10,000 times per month! Clearly this is a trend that has taken off.

Amazon Top Ten Sellers for Dog Probiotics 2023Benefits of Probiotics for Dogs

Probiotics can help restore the natural balance of your dog’s gut microbiota, which can be disrupted by factors like diet, stress, or antibiotics. This can help alleviate digestive issues like diarrhoea, bloating, and gas.

Certain strains of probiotics can help reduce the duration and severity of diarrhoea, making them a useful addition to the treatment plan for dogs with acute or chronic diarrhoea.

Probiotics can also be beneficial for dogs with allergies. By supporting a healthy gut microbiota, probiotics can help strengthen the immune system and potentially reduce allergic reactions.

If you’ve noticed certain health issues in your dog, probiotics can help. 

Unpleasant Odours 

Bad breath and a less-than-fresh smell can be signs of an imbalance in your dog’s gut bacteria. Probiotics can help restore a healthy bacterial balance, which can help freshen up your dog’s breath and body odour.

Itching That Just Won’t Stop 

If your dog can’t seem to stop scratching, it could be due to food allergies. Probiotics can help by supporting a healthy digestive system, reducing the strain on the pancreas and potentially alleviating allergy symptoms.

Shedding More Than Usual

If you’ve noticed your dog shedding more than usual, it could be a sign of stress. Probiotics can help by supporting healthy digestion, reducing stress and, in turn, excessive shedding.

Recurring Ear Infections 

If your dog suffers from recurring ear infections, it could be due to an imbalance in their gut bacteria. While a vet should treat any ear infection, probiotics can help maintain a healthy bacterial balance and potentially prevent future infections.

Flaky Skin 

Your dog’s skin is a reflection of their internal health. Dry, flaky skin can be a sign of malnutrition or an overgrowth of yeast. Probiotics can help by aiding in nutrient absorption and controlling bacterial overgrowth.

Diarrhoea 

Diarrhoea can be a sign that your dog’s gut bacteria are out of balance. Probiotics can help restore a healthy balance, which can alleviate diarrhoea symptoms.

There are many reports in forums and in reviews for probiotics reducing the symptoms of diarrhoea. It’s important to find a product that’s specifically designed for dogs and contains a high number of live organisms.

 

Types of Probiotics for Dogs

Lactobacillus: This is one of the most common types of probiotics and is found in many dog probiotic supplements. It can help improve digestion and nutrient absorption, and it can also boost the immune system.

Bifidobacterium: This type of probiotic is also common in dog supplements. It can help maintain a healthy balance of bacteria in the gut and support overall digestive health.

Enterococcus faecium: This probiotic is often used to help manage diarrhea and other digestive issues in dogs. This is the one we use as it is the main ingredient in Pro-Kolin – our go to probiotic.

Bacillus coagulans: This probiotic is known for its ability to survive in harsh conditions, making it more likely to reach your dog’s gut and provide benefits. It can help improve digestion and support a healthy immune system.

Saccharomyces boulardii: This is a type of yeast that acts as a probiotic. It can help manage digestive issues like diarrhea.

 

Best Probiotics for Dogs

When choosing a probiotic for your dog, there are several factors to consider. First, you want to look for a product that contains a high number of live organisms, often listed as CFUs (colony-forming units) on the label. Second, you want to choose a product that contains strains of bacteria that are beneficial for dogs – see above.

There are many excellent probiotics for dogs available in the UK, including products like Purina’s Fortiflora and Kiki’s Probiotics for Dogs. These products contain a blend of beneficial bacteria strains and are highly rated by dog owners.

In addition to supplements, you can also find probiotic dog food and treats. These products can be a convenient way to incorporate probiotics into your dog’s diet.

 

Natural Probiotics for Dogs

If you prefer a more natural approach, there are several foods that are rich in probiotics that you can add to your dog’s diet. This includes fermented foods like yoghurt and kefir. However, it’s important to choose products that are low in sugar and free from artificial additives.

Homemade probiotics for dogs can also be a good option. For example, you can make your own fermented vegetables at home. Just remember to introduce these foods gradually and monitor your dog for any adverse reactions.

 

Potential Side Effects of Probiotics in Dogs

While probiotics are generally safe for dogs, they can sometimes cause side effects. This can include digestive upset like gas and bloating, especially when first introducing a new probiotic supplement. If you notice any adverse reactions, it’s best to consult with your vet.

 

Recent Medical Research

There have been several recent medical studies into their effectiveness. There are several references throughout this research paper
 
The results showed that the strains had a variety of potential probiotic properties, including the ability to produce lactic acid, inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria, and boost the immune system.
 
Further research can be found in this study published in 2019 ;

Conclusion

Probiotics can be valuable to your dog’s diet. We have personally witnessed their positive impact and it certainly seems that the majority of people who try them believe them to be very effective.

Whether you choose a supplement, probiotic-rich food, or a combination of both, these beneficial bacteria can support your dog’s digestive health, boost their immune system, and potentially alleviate conditions like described above. We  highly recommend you try them out.

However, it’s always best to consult your vet before starting any new supplement regime for your dog. Why not ask your vet the next time you visit.

Probiotics for dogs are more than just a health fad. They are a scientifically-backed approach to supporting your dog’s health from the inside out. So, next time you’re shopping for your retriever, consider adding a probiotic supplement to your cart. Your dog’s gut will thank you!

If you need further convincing that these products are worth a try, then take a look at the significant number of positive reviews that products such as Yumove get on Amazon, I personally believe a lot of Amazon reviews are manipulated, but so many positive remarks are difficult to argue with! We have used this product with our Golden Retrievers when they have been poorly and have noticed a difference, especially in reducing Diarroea symptoms..

Remember, a healthy dog is a happy dog. And as a dog owner, there’s nothing more rewarding than seeing your furry friend thrive. So, why not give probiotics a try? Your dog might just reap the benefits, and you’ll get the peace of mind of knowing you’re doing everything you can to support your dog’s health.

In the world of dog health, probiotics are a promising field with much potential. As research continues, we may discover even more ways in which these beneficial bacteria can support our dogs’ health and wellbeing. But for now, we know enough to say that, yes, your dog could benefit from probiotics.

So, whether you’re dealing with a specific health issue like diarrhoea or allergies or you’re simply looking to boost your dog’s overall health, probiotics for dogs are worth considering. They’re a small addition to your dog’s diet, but they could make a big difference to their health.

Ultimately, every dog is unique, and what works for one might not work for another. But with the potential benefits of probiotics for dogs, it’s certainly worth a try. After all, our dogs give us their best every day.

So, would your dog benefit from probiotics? The answer is likely yes. But as always, it’s best to consult with your vet to make sure it’s the right choice for your furry friend.

Hopefully this article has provided a comprehensive overview of probiotics for dogs, discussing what they are, their potential benefits, how to choose the best probiotics for your dog, natural sources of probiotics, and possible side effects. We believe probiotics have the potential to significantly benefit our dogs’ health, making them a worthwhile consideration for any retriever owner.

To save you doing the research we have compiled a table listing the top 10 brands selling online including monthly sales, reviews and a link to the product.

Top 10 Dog Probiotics on Amazon UK, 2023

ASINBrand
B00BEXP5MAProtexin
B007FB3YBOProtexin
B0080PACF0Yumove
B07JZN1KGJProtexin Veterinary
B0BJ9J9YW3NutriPaw
B07K18P237Protexin
B07417V8NGFurever Friendz Pet Supplies
B09GJHL4Q5Lintbells
B00KMZVR1EYumove
B08J8988BRBuddy & Lola

Note - This post may contain affiliate links which means we may receive a commission on purchases made through them. We only recommend products we have personally used!

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