You might think of your dog’s digestive system as only relating to their food and bowel movements. But a healthy gut is essential to their overall wellbeing. Digestive issues can lead to diseases, exacerbated allergies, and dry irritated skin. Which is why you should pay as much attention to your dog’s digestion as you do to their dinner.
How Do Dogs’ Digestive Systems Work?
As your dog chews and swallows their food, their digestive system prepares itself for the protein, carbohydrates, and fat that it’s about to break down. To do this, it releases digestive enzymes in the mouth, stomach, and intestines.
Once they’re weaned and eating a solid diet, dogs don’t make enough digestive enzymes on their own to break down food. However, a healthy diet helps them to get the additional enzymes they need – especially from fruits and vegetables.
If you think your dog’s struggling to digest food or suffering with other gut issues, additional supplements might help.
How To Treat Digestive Issues In Dogs
If you suspect your dog suffers with digestive upset or other gut health issues, consult a vet before making any changes to their diet or medications. A professional will be able to advise on the source of the issue, and the best course of treatment for their specific problem.
Some symptoms of digestive upset in dogs include:
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Lack of appetite
- Blood or mucus in stools or vomit
- Itching and irritated skin
If your dog occasionally suffers with loose stools or itching, the chances are they have an intolerance or a bacterial imbalance in their gut. These problems can be treated with medication, but unlike more serious gut diseases, they’re also mild enough to treat – or complement traditional prescribed medicine – with natural remedies and supplements.
An essential part of any dog’s diet, dietary fiber can be found in most natural and healthy dog foods. Fiber promotes healthy gut bacteria which aids in the digestion of food, keeping bowel movements regular and the right consistency. So if you’ve noticed your dog is struggling to go to the toilet, or they’re suffering with diarrhea, a fiber supplement or more foods that are high in fiber – like pumpkin, sweet potato, or green leafy vegetables – could help.
Vitamin B12 is directly linked to gut health, so if your dog is deficient in this then you might notice them suffering from digestive issues. B12 can be administered as an injection by your vet, or can be fed orally in the form of a dog supplement.
Dogs require a well-rounded and balanced diet that is rich in all vitamins – not just B12. Without all the essential vitamins, it’s likely you will notice a decline in your pet’s overall health, not just their gut health.
Try to include dog-safe fruit and veg in their diet to increase fiber and vitamin intake, and avoid overly processed kibbles. Front of the Pack’s air-dried food is designed specifically to meet all your dog’s daily needs in terms of vitamin, mineral, and nutrient intake.
Like fiber, probiotics create healthy bacteria in the gut. This helps the digestive system to break down food, eliminate bad bacterias, and strengthens the gut lining for more robust digestion. A healthy gut microbiome is essential for your dog’s overall health. Poor digestive health can lead to skin irritation and can exacerbate allergies that stem from different foods and other bacterial irritants.
Just be sure to buy vet-approved probiotics made especially for dogs. Human probiotics can cause further upset to doggy stomachs.
If your vet diagnoses your dog with a condition that makes them unable to make their own digestive enzymes and break down their own food, you might need to put them on enzyme supplements.
Symptoms of this kind of disease include weight loss, increased appetite, and loose stools or diarrhea. However, giving your dog enzyme supplements if they don’t need it can upset their digestive system unnecessarily. So be sure to get confirmation from your vet before adding this to your dog’s diet.
Front of the Pack’s Soothe supplement is made with all these ingredients and more – designed to target gut issues at the source. It’s enriched with Omega-3 fish oil, postbiotics, and protein-rich egg membrane all work to nourish the skin, reduce inflammation and support a healthy gut and immune response. All from just one scoop a day!