Dr. Andrew Jones author of “Veterinary Secrets Revealed” says that diarrhea and vomiting are two of the top 10 reasons owners bring their pets to the vet. He continues to say that supplementing the diet with probiotics is an essential way to help maintain and promote your pet's optimal intestinal health. Of course, the key factor is PREVENTING disease, and ensuring that your pet's gut immune system is functioning optimally.
The yogurt companies are now in an advertising war to get you to try their product by offering money back guarantees to the consumer if you don’t see a change in your intestinal health. And now the veterinary community has taken notice. They are now recommending probiotics for vomiting and diarrhea, skin disease, kidney failure and for immune system support and disease prevention. In order for the probiotic to be beneficial it must be active (which it should state on the container). If you use a supplement the probiotic must be active because these healthy bacteria age and become ineffective. The probiotic must make its way through the stomach and into the pet’s digestive tract.
There has been extensive research done to prove that probiotics have beneficial effects on the digestive health of your dog. Probiotics are live "good" bacteria that when ingested by pets help to restore bacterial balance within the intestine. When shopping for dry dog food, check the bag to see that it lists Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and Enterococcus to indicate the inclusion of probiotics in the dog food.
If your dog has been ill and has been on any antibiotics, supplementing his food with probiotics can help restore the right balance of bacteria to his intestinal tract. There are many other things that can upset the dog’s digestive tract. Stressful conditions (moving, change in diet, dog shows, boarding, aging, etc.) can disrupt the delicate balance of "good" and "bad" bacteria within the intestine. Regularly feeding your dog a food or supplement containing probiotics can help maintain their digestive health for the long term.
Also dogs prone to digestive sensitivity like soft stool or diarrhea (SIBO – small intestinal bacterial overgrowth) may benefit tremendously from a food or supplement containing probiotics. Many of these pets have inflammation within their small intestine. This is what causes the bacterial overgrowth and some dogs have a problem called antibiotic-responsive diarrhea. Antibiotic therapy like the use of Tylan seemed to help these dogs that had chronic diarrhea or soft stools. But recently some of these dogs were put on a probiotic regime which eliminated the need for antibiotics and they didn’t seem to relapse with diarrhea if the probiotic was continued. I know this to be true for as I reported in another article, I have a bitch that has SIBO and was on Tylan and no longer has to take this antibiotic because she’s on a probiotic regime that has changed her life around (and mine as well)……..no more cleaning up soft stools!
Research has shown that here have been no side effects or adverse reactions reported with long-term feeding of probiotics. Although intestinal bacteria are confined to one area of the body, they exert powerful effects on whole-body health.
Because the German Shepherd is prone to digestive disorders, I personally feel that including probiotics in their meals can only be a good thing. I feed dog foods that have probiotics added to their ingredient labels, but if you look at those labels, you will see that most of the added probiotics are listed far down in the ingredients so the chances of these being very beneficial is questionable. As most of you know I use and sell VIBRANT PETS supplement. It has the highest quality of four probiotics on the market. I have also used yogurt for my dogs. So they are always getting some form of this additive. I use probiotics for the health of my dogs.
My rating: probiotics: (4), Vibrant Pets: (4)