Gut Flora Basics In Dogs
Gut flora is a term used to describe your pets natural microbial balance. Your pets digestive tract is an ecosystem with both good and bad bacteria living and reproducing constantly.
Healthy digestion relies on the good bacteria having a greater population than the bad.
While these healthy bacteria reproduce to continue populating your pets system, things like diet, genetics, and general health can either boost or limit their bodys ability to provide an appropriate environment for that bacteria to replenish.
Even though their bodies are designed to naturally balance their gut flora, some pets may need some extra help from their diet or supplements. Pets that arent fed the right diets, pets prone to digestive issues based on breed, or pets that have conditions, illnesses, or diseases may all require a diet meant to ease digestion.
Common gastrointestinal disorders in dogs are:
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome – Inflammation of the intestines
- Colitis – Inflammation of the colon
- Dysbiosis – Weakening of intestinal barrier that filters nutrients to the bloodstream
While not all dogs with sensitive digestion are affected by these conditions, addressing digestive problems at the first sign can be the most effective method to prevent them.
Feeding A Dog With Intestinal Diseases
We always start with the assumption that any kind of a stomach problem will eventually lead to a lack of nutrition . Various diseases can affect the digestive system of a dog for example, inflammation may cause pain to your Fido with its gastritis acids, or the pancreas may not produce its juices, or the intestine may not absorb all the necessary substances.
Whatever the case the maldigestion or the pain combined with vomiting or the expulsion of ingested materials without absorption your dog is not well-fed and doesnt absorb the nutrients therefore, they will need help to deal with the lack of them.
Depending on a problem, there are two things that can help your furry friend in this situation:
- The first option, more serious, would be to put your dogs digestive system to rest its especially recommended when theres pain bothering your dog. In this case, a dog, that cant absorb all the necessary nutrients on their own, is admitted to a veterinary clinic and fed parenterally , or with an IV.
- The second option, more common, is to give your dog only the foods that are easy to digest and to absorb, as it will provide them with a large amount of the necessary nutrients, which will make it easier for them to absorb the right portion. This is recommended in cases of diarrhea, maldigestion, or malabsorption without much pain.
Is Dog Food Formulated For Dogs With Sensitive Stomachs Healthy For My Pet
If your dog has stomach problems, moving them to a diet of food specifically formulated for sensitive stomachs can help get their tummy issues under control.
Those dogs that have demonstrated gastrointestinal signs or recurring gastrointestinal signs can benefit from dog food formulated for sensitive stomachs, says Richardson.
Just keep in mind that if your dog has more severe GI issues, they might need a vet-prescribed diet to feel their best. This is especially important if your dogs sensitive stomach issues are a result of allergies.
An important distinction exists between dogs with a sensitive stomach and those with true food allergies. Those with food allergies require a specially formulated diet that is either completely hypoallergenic or what we call a novel protein source, such as duck or rabbit, that the dogs immune system does not react to, says Richardson. Over the counter diets that claim to be hypoallergenic or novel protein do not have the same quality control as veterinary prescription diets where there is absolutely no cross-contamination during the manufacturing of the diets.
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Hill’s Science Diet Healthy Development Small Bites Puppy Food
This dry kibble from Hill’s Science is specifically formulated to meet the needs of small puppies. The kibble size is small enough for tiny mouths and developing teeth to process.
More importantly, each piece is packed with high-quality ingredients that can support their overall development. Chicken meal and pork meal are used for protein. They’re joined by a wide range of ingredients that are easy on your pup’s system.
A healthy dose of fiber will keep your dog regular while vitamins, minerals, and omega fatty acids support various bodily functions as they grow.
Wellness Core Digestive Health Ingredient Analysis
The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken contains up to 73% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.
After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.
The second ingredient is chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.
The third ingredient is rice. Is this whole grain rice, brown rice or white rice? Since the word rice doesnt tell us much, its impossible to judge the quality of this item.
The fourth ingredient is barley, a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. However, aside from its energy content, this cereal grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.
The fifth ingredient includes oats, which are rich in B-vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber.
The sixth ingredient is chicken fat. This item is obtained from rendering chicken, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.
Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesnt sound very appetizing, chicken fat is actually a quality ingredient.
However, flaxseed contains about 19% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.
With 5 notable exceptions
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Hill’s Prescription Diet Low Fat Digestive Care
- Clinically proven to calm and…
- Highly digestible, low fat…
Hill’s is often favored and trusted by veterinarians but they’re also more expensive. This formula specifically is a more affordable sensitive digestion dry dog food option.
You will find this food in at least one of those big-name pet stores and you dont have to buy it in smaller bags which can be a real pain if you have giant breed dogs!
This formula is made specifically with large dogs in mind and it supports digestive health by providing high-quality protein sources.
This is a good middle-of-the-road formula for large breed dogs with sensitive digestive systems.
Purina Pro Plan Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food
- No corn, wheat, or soy
- Natural salmon is the first ingredient
- Includes fatty acids for skin and coat
- Uses probiotics and prebiotics for better digestion
Purina may not be the first brand about which you think when considering dog foods for your dogs sensitive stomach, but the companys Pro Plan line has been a favorite choice among dog owners when dealing with their dogs eating problems. This particular blend is a great choice for those dogs who have sensitive stomachs, both because it provides a nutritious meal for those animals and because it manages to avoid some of the allergens that are often the culprit when it comes to stomach problems.
One of the best ways to make sure that your dog is able to fully digest a meal is to make sure that the meal is simple. As such, Purina has greatly simplified the number of ingredients in this food, starting off with natural salmon and removing some of the more common fillers like soy and corn. This simple move is enough to help many dogs digest their food a little more easily while still allowing pet owners to feel safe in the knowledge that their dogs are still getting a wholesome meal at the same time.
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Go Sensitivities Limited Ingredient Salmon Grain
The limited ingredient dog foods offered by Go! contain only the necessary ingredients for your dogs health. This blend contains salmon and no grain products, so if your doggo is gluten-sensitive, he can still enjoy some tasty salmon and fiber from chickpeas. It also contains prebiotic fiber and probiotics for optimal digestion. This blend is fortified with all of the vital nutrients that dogs need to thrive at your side as your best friend. This product is available from petcurean.com and Chewy.com. It qualifies for free shipping from Chewy.
Go Sensitivities Limited Ingredient Diet
Buy on Chewy.com97 Reviews
Another common allergen for dogs is grain, this is whyGO! designed a grain-free mix for sensitive tummies. Their salmon recipe is the main ingredient in a limited ingredient mix. This is to minimize the chance of allergic reactions or stomach sensitives. If your dog has starch or particular carbohydrate sensitivities then this is the recipe for them. They are not only grain-free but have no potato in this mix either. The six ingredient blend still offers a taste that your pup will love and reviews second that.
Great reviews are found throughout. Those that wish to keep their dogs lean and agile whilst still feeling comfortable after meal times recommend this blend. They are getting their full nutritional needs met with no extra weight gain or sluggishness.
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Hills Science Diet Wet Dog Food Adult 7+ For Senior Dogs
This is a wet food ideal for senior dogs created by Hill. This mix is a blend of barley and beef to offer an easily digestible mix. The single protein ensures your dogs stomach is not overwhelmed but still gets the necessary protein in their diet. Although there is a lot of sensitive dog food on the market, there are few that are specifically tailored for elderly dogs. Every individual has different needs and older dogs are the same, this mix ensures they receive the proper nutritional content while not receiving an upset tummy.
Reviews are happy with the results but especially happy that their dog loves the flavor. Many older dogs are picky and lose weight easily. So this mix is a blessing in more than one way.
Can Dog Food Help With Sensitive Stomach Issues
Truly, this is a question only your veterinarian can answer. It depends on the dog and the food. For example, your vet can do blood work to test for various allergies. If an allergy is confirmed, switching your dog to a sensitive stomach dog food may be the easiest, fastest path to digestive comfort at mealtimes.
As a later section here describes, you can also consider making your own sensitive stomach dog food at home. You can do this either from scratch or with the help of the excellent limited diet dog food premixes mentioned here. If you are pressed for time, this can be an ideal solution.
When you are able to confirm the cause of your dogs sensitivity symptoms, this will then tell you which dog food recipes will be the best fit for your dogs nutritional needs going forward.
What Is A Sensitive Stomach In Dogs
Just like in people, an episode of flatulence or diarrhoea can be triggered off in some dogs if something doesnt agree with them. We call this sensitive stomach. Here, were talking about a mild upset of the digestive system, which can range from a gurgling gut and nasty niffs from the rear end right through to sickness and diarrhoea.
Your dogs digestive system is crucial in making sure all of the nutrients from their food can be absorbed and used. With this in mind, its important to pick up on any clues that its not firing on all cylinders and to know what can be done about it, keep reading for everything you need to know.
Stella & Chewy’s Beef Heart Freeze
Raw dog treats have several benefits when compared to manufactured ones. Raw diets have no artificial colors and flavors. Similarly, raw diets are also free from any filler content. Therefore, some people consider raw dog treats the best dog treats for dogs that have sensitive stomachs.
And you know whats the best thing aboutStella & Chewys Raw Dog Treats? They are pure, raw beef heart. Thats it. There is nothing else to these raw treats. And this is exactly what makes these treats so good. Interested in checking out more freeze-dried treats? Have a look at our top picks.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Sensitive Stomach In Dogs
Sensitive stomach in dogs is more common than you think. Also, it is a condition that grows gradually over time. Every dog is different, as are their symptoms. However, there are some common signs that should alert you right away. Regardless of the cause, dogs with sensitive stomachs should be fed with care. Continuing to give them foods that disagree with them may cause uncomfortable and undesirable symptoms, which include:
Flatulence is normal to a certain extent. But if your dog is experiencing sudden or excessive gassiness, this could indicate a problem. Often, this is due to improper diet.
Vomiting is the number one sign of stomach sensitivities caused by food. As much as your dog loves to eat, not every ingredient may agree with every breed. Stomach sensitivity and intolerance can increase with repeated exposure to the ingredients causing the upset. If not changed in time, this could lead to various disorders.
Vomiting is serious. It is time to enrich your dogs nutrition with probiotic-rich ingredients and digestive enzymes. For persistent problems, you should consult your veterinarian as soon as possible.
Diarrhea is the next most common symptom of a sensitive tummy. A runny stool may not seem like a big issue if it occurs once. But if it happens regularly, it could lead to a life-threatening situation. Do not let your canine get severely dehydrated by delaying medical attention.
Lack of appetite
Nulo Freestyle Limited+ Puppy Grain
Top Ingredients: 1. Deboned Salmon, 2. Salmon Meal, 3. Chickpeas, 4. Canola Oil, 5. Dried Chicory Root
Whether youve got a puppy with a sensitive stomach or an adult with food allergies, Nulo Freestyle Limited+ dog food has all the right ingredients to fulfill their nutritional needs without placing any stress on their digestion. It has one of the highest protein contents amongst dog foods at 30% minimum, which is crucial for both puppies and adults in building muscle mass.
Any ingredient that has the slightest chance of irritating a sensitive stomach has been exempted from the recipe, including grains, potatoes, eggs, peas, soy, and artificial preservatives. Side by side, the dog food strengthens your dogs digestive system with GanedenBC30 probiotics and nourishes their coat with omega fatty acids.
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Symptoms Of Stomach Sensitivity In Dogs
As mentioned earlier, visit a vet for a proper determination of the cause of stomach sensitivity. While it is possible to figure out what to exclude from his food, a proper diagnosis from a vet clinic is still crucial. Some tests may be necessary to get the best results.
Meanwhile, there are some symptoms you can investigate. These are:
- Lack of appetite
So, the content of dog foods is a common cause of sensitivity. What are these ingredients?
How Exactly Do You Understand If Your Dog Has Sensitive Stomachs
As you have already understood what causes sensitive stomachs andthe 10 best-wet foods for the sensitive stomach. Now, let us move on to the nest section- how exactly to understand if your dog has a sensitive stomach or not.
- Anyway, if your dog does indeed have a sensitive stomach and youre wondering if a change in dog foods may help, keep an eye on the following symptoms if they keep reoccurring. So, in case, if your dog has symptoms of a sense of sensitive stomach keep in mind to avoid those symptoms by various steps.
- Lack of appetite might be one of the reasons why your dog might suffer from a sensitive stomach. Apart from lack of appetite, it could also be due to low water content. If your dog eats too much dry food, the water content of his body goes too low this may result in a sensitive stomach. You should take care of your dog and feed him with food.
- Blood in stool- If you see blood in the stool of your dog this might be a symptom of a sensitive stomach. In such a situation, it is recommended to visit the vet or an expert to get the best solutions. But in the meantime, you can feed your dog with wet food or with high water content.
- Vomiting- Apart from lack of appetite and blood in the stool, if your dog vomits, this is also a serious problem. Vomiting is another sign of a sensitive stomach. If it is not given proper care, it might become a serious problem as well.
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Limited Ingredient Dog Foods
Limited ingredient dog foods are just that. They have fewer ingredients in them to decrease the chances of your dog experiencing tummy issues. The ingredients that are used are of a higher quality to ensure that your puppy is getting all of the nutrients they need to stay healthy.
There are many different limited ingredient options out there, allowing you to find a good product for your dog no matter how unique their allergy is. Whether your dog is allergic to grains or a common protein source, limited ingredient dog foods can be the dietary solution you’re looking for.