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Does your dog have the guts?

Does your dog have the guts?

Dec 29th 2021

If your dog has been vomiting, having diarrhea or loss of appetite, those are pretty clear signs that’s something is up. But sometimes the signs can be much harder to detect.

Leaky gut syndrome (gut trauma), for example, can be more difficult to spot. It can be caused by food allergies to digestive problems, ear infections, and, really, any common health condition that stems from an inflammatory disorder.

Leaky gut is when the junctions in the lining of the mucous membrane become larger than they should, allowing undigested food and other particles (disease-causing pathogens, chemicals, allergens, and other toxins) to “leak” through the intestinal wall and enter into the blood stream, leading to disease.

There are many things that damage the gut’s environment, causing the decline of friendly, beneficial gut bacteria and creating much of the chronic disease we see in our dogs today. Some things that are known to cause these issues are antibiotics, anti-inflammatory, steroids, feeding processed food, over-vaccinating, stress and yeast.

How to Improve Gut Health

1. Probiotics

Probiotics encourage those helpful communities to flourish in the gut, working to crowd out the harmful bacteria and keep the system in homeostasis.

2. Prebiotics

Without prebiotics, those vital probiotics would just starve and die. Prebiotics feed the beneficial bacteria colonies in your animal’s gut.

3. Digestive Enzymes

Digestive enzymes are paramount in digestion, helping to break down food into absorbable nutrients and supporting the synergistic process of the digestive tract.

Especially good additions for gut health are:

Kefir Or Raw Live Yogurt - Look for products from Jersey cows, goats or use coconut kefir. Give 2 Tbsp daily for an average (30 to 50 pound) size dog.

Fermented Vegetables - Grow your own or buy for dogs (cabbage, carrots, beets, other root vegetables; no salt, spice or onions). Work up slowly to 1 to 3 tsp a day for every 20 pounds of body weight.

Bone broth - 1 ounce per 20 pounds of body weight.

Pumpkin (make sure you’re buying pure pumpkin NOT pumpkin pie filling!) - 1 tsp per 10 pounds of body weight.

You can add any of these to food a few times a week. Rotation here is key.

4. Species-appropriate diet

Highly processed foods are particularly hard to digest, and those with a high starch content can be an even bigger problem.