Probiotics in dog food; is there any actual benefit, or is it all hype? The answer is a very definitive yes, but there are some dangers that you need to watch for.
However, there is also some conflicting facts with probiotics.
This involves what is referred to as prebiotics that can be extremely confusing to a dog owner in trying to fully understand exactly what the benefits are.
Both of these additives to your dog’s food are substances that help to restore the balance between the good and the bad bacteria that is found in your pet’s digestive tract.
Probiotics are referred to as good bacteria, but that is also confusing, as so are prebiotics.
However, they serve completely different functions in your dog’s body.
Probiotics is an additive that can be digested and is one of the main ingredients in yogurt that makes it so viable and healthy for humans.
On the other hand, prebiotics are non-digestible in dog food sources but they play a huge role in the stimulation of growth in the good bacteria.
Your dog does not digest prebiotics and as a result, they stay in their digestive tract where they continue to stimulate the good bacteria until they are eliminated.
Probiotics in dog food are live microorganisms, and in most cases they are bacteria.
However, they act as good or friendly bacteria.
In fact, they are very similar to the beneficial microorganisms that are found naturally in your dog’s stomach.
When they are mixed with prebiotics, they become extremely effective at stimulating the growth of helpful microorganisms in your dog’s large intestine.
Both of these are advertised as new, and they are relatively new in dog foods.
However, the have been around since ancient times.
They date back centuries and were originally found in fermented foods as well as cultured milk products.
They been producing several benefits for humans for the same time periods.
Your dog’s digestive system is extremely strong and designed specifically to maintain a delicate balance between the friendly bacteria and the bad that is trying to attack your dog’s system.
However, as strong as this system is, it can become unbalanced for many reasons.
If your dog has had a recent illness and is being treated with an antibiotic of some kind, the antibiotic may be attacking the bad bacteria, but is may also be killing the good bacteria as well.
If your dog has any type of a fugal growth after an illness, especially diarrhea, it may also throw off their system of balances.
But there are two other potential causes of this imbalance; dietary problems as well as hereditary problems at birth.
If your dog is not eating a balanced diet and getting the proper nutritional requirements that they need, their system may not be able to maintain a proper balance of the healthy bacteria.
There are also some dogs that may have a naturally low count of healthy bacteria in their system due to a hereditary factor.
Or it can be the result of a mother that had some type of an illness at birth the retarded the healthy bacteria in the litter.
The term probiotics actually means life in Greek, and it references the ability of these microorganisms to improve intestinal balance and improve life.
Probiotics in dog food has tremendous benefits but there are also some real warning signs that you need to watch for in selecting foods with these ingredients added.
There is more evidence coming every day that when these two additives are combined, they are very effective at protecting against invading bacteria, and thus help in preventing disease.
If probiotics in dog food are used correctly, it may be the best first line of defense that your dog has in fighting disease.
It will naturally increase the resistance of disease, especially in the gastrointestinal tract, as well as preventing fungal growth from over populating.
Fungal growth is one of the most dangerous forms of infection that any dog faces.
These two additives are perhaps the only form of microorganism that is effective in countering this vicious attack.
They have also shown to be extremely effective in eliminating several forms of allergic reactions.
In addition, they have proven to be the best defense for combating pathogenic bacteria that is found in several antibiotics.
It is always a very fine line that your dog’s system goes through when any type of medication is used, but these simple additives may prevent the antibiotics from killing off the good bacteria.
Probiotics in dog food has also shown to be very effective in enhancing your pets system against viral infections as it is extremely beneficial in stimulating their immune system.
But by far and away the largest benefits come in the form of optimizing the digestive process.
When this occurs, it maximizes the nutritional benefits for your dog’s food as well as improving their resistance to several different types of bowel problems.
If your dog is digesting properly, their magnificent immune system is running on all cylinders.
By adding probiotics in your dog’s food by either the manufacturer or adding it yourself, you also improve the system’s ability to maximize antioxidants in their system.
This helps to reduce the destructive effects of oxidation as well as increasing your dog’s control over their cholesterol levels.
When your dog’s digestive system is fully operational there is very little it cannot do.
However, with the myriad of benefits that probiotics in dog food offer, there are some forms of it that you should be very careful with.
Probiotics in dog food, like any form of probiotic, are lives cultures.
As a result they become very unstable if they reach temperatures that exceed 75 degrees.
You will need to make sure that any type of probiotic supplement contains stabilized forms of bacteria.
If the product you are buying requires refrigeration, it is yelling at you that it has not been stabilized.
You should not walk, but run from any of these products.
If it is not stabilized, that chances are very high that it will be dead on arrival once it hits your dog’s body and will provide absolutely no benefits at all.
Cheap dog foods that claim to have probiotics will in most all cases never mention the stabilization process.
Probiotics in dog food is still relatively new to the industry, but their benefits have been around for centuries.
If you watch carefully and select the stabilized form, this powerful good bacteria can help protect your dog against yeast infections and overgrowth.
It can also help with excessive shedding and improve the breath in your pet, which is a problem with most all dogs.
It will also help to reduce gas in your dog, and any owner can attest dogs can have some very powerful silent bullets.
It can also help you dogs overall coat health and just flat out improve the smell of your best friend.