Just like humans, the key to a happy and healthy dog is through their stomach!
The digestive system of a dog serves many essential functions from absorbing useful nutrients to maintaining their fluid balance. But most importantly, a healthy digestive system helps your pup produce energy! The more energy they have, the more they can play and the better they can sleep.
Dog vs. Human Digestion
However, dogs have very different digestive systems from their human counterparts.
For instance, dogs have sharper teeth to tear through their meat-heavy diet. Their saliva also lacks the same digestive enzymes as human saliva. In return, our pups’ stomachs can produce up to 100 times more acid than human stomachs!
With these differences in mind, it’s clear that there is a need to create special diets just for our favourite furry friends. In particular, good quality dog digestive food made with added nutrition and fibre can do wonders for your dog’s digestion!
How to Improve your Dog’s Digestive Health
Let’s take a look at some ways you can help your dog achieve a healthy digestive system!
1. Pick the Right Diet
Of course, the first thing to tackle is your pup’s diet! After all, what they eat has a large impact on how their body functions over time.
Although dogs are omnivorous by nature, they require high protein, low fat diets that provide your pup with the nutrients they need. This is especially important for puppies as they need plenty of energy as they grow up. Protein also helps support your pup’s muscles, skin, hair and immune system!
Specially formulated diets like Wellness Core’s Digestive Health Diet can provide just the right type of highly digestible diet your dog needs. It’s also infused with probiotics, omega-3 fatty acids and other super digestive foods like pumpkin and papaya for added effect!
Some veterinarians also recommend raw diets. These biologically appropriate diets contain natural enzymes that can help improve your dog’s digestion.
2. Supplement Their Diet
Outside of their general diet, it’s a good idea to further boost their digestive health with useful supplements. Many of these supplements like Furment Complete Postbiotics Supplement is high in probiotics and prebiotics, helping to add to the flora in your dog’s digestive tract. This helps your dog’s digestive system fight off infections, and other diseases!
Some fermented foods like mugwort or turmeric also have positive impacts on the digestive system of a dog. They’re anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antioxidant.
However, be very careful when feeding your dog human food - especially food like chocolates, grapes or almonds. Some studies have even shown that feeding your dog human food can actually have a negative impact on the digestive system of a dog!
Make sure to do plenty of research on supplements as they can be extremely beneficial depending on what your pup needs. For instance, Labivet’s Skin and Gut Probiotics Supplement can be very helpful for pups experiencing these issues!
3. Keep a Lookout for Digestive Issues
Upset stomachs in dogs are unfortunately a part of canine life. As with all illnesses, identifying them early is key to nipping them in the bud and helping your pup recover more quickly.
Make sure to keep an eye on your dog’s wellbeing everyday. In particular, look out for the following symptoms:
- Excessive drooling
- Loss of Appetite
- Abdominal pain and bloating
- Straining to defecate
If your dog exhibits any of the above symptoms, especially over a few days, make sure to consult a veterinarian right away. These signs point to possible abdominal issues that can worsen if left untreated.
4. Study Your Pup’s Stool
As unpleasant as this might seem, understanding doggy excrement can help you understand your dog’s health and wellbeing. Even if your dog doesn’t display any of the symptoms above, it’s possible that they are still having digestive issues.
In these cases, it’s a good idea to read up on the differences between different types of doggy stool. Here are some common types of dog stool that you should be aware of:
Watery or Soft Stool - Common during dog diarrhoea, watery stool can be caused by many things. Your dog might still be getting used to changes in their diet or may have consumed something that their stomach dislikes. For older pups, you should wait 1-3 days before bringing them to a vet. However, puppy diarrhoea can be more serious, so it might be a good idea to bring your puppy to a vet right away if they’re experiencing diarrhoea!
Hard, Pebble Like Stool - Hard stool is often a sign of constipation, which is common in dogs that have a predominantly dry kibble diet. It typically indicates that your dog’s diet is lacking in moisture or that your pup is dehydrated. Encourage your pup to hydrate more!
Blood in Stool - If your dog’s stool has blood in it, keep calm! It could be caused by extra hard stool causing abrasions during excretion. However, if it persists for 2-3 bowel movements, take your dog to a vet as bloody stool can also be caused by parasites or worms in their body.
If your dog is experiencing any of the above symptoms, it might be a good idea to give them NaturVet Anti-Diarrhea Plus Kaolin Liquid Aid to help relieve stool and tummy issues. However, if their symptoms persist for more than 3 days, bring them to a vet right away.
Of course, if your pup makes a mess, clean it up easily with Simple Solution’s Hard Floor Pet Stain and Odor Remover!
A happy stomach makes for a happy dog!
Helping your pup maintain a healthy diet and routine doesn’t take much time - yet it can help them live a long and fulfilling life. It’s also important to consult a veterinarian regarding your dog’s diet as different dogs require different types of food depending on their breed, health condition and age!
Tammi is an avid writer, but especially loves learning and writing about animals! She spends her free time visiting cat cafes, playing video games and having plenty of cuddle time with her pup.