It seems like probiotics are everywhere on TV these days. Jamie Lee Curtis trying to get you to eat yogurt. That other girl on the flag football team talking about probiotics in the huddle. *eyeroll*
Setting aside massive mistrust of advertising, I believe probiotics–in the right amount and quality–make a positive difference in digestion, nutrition, and health. I take them myself daily, and I can tell a difference on the days when I forget.
I had never thought my dogs might benefit from them until this past summer when Pearl was on round after round of antibiotics. I fed her plain yogurt during those times to keep her stomach from being torn up by the medicine. But feeding it to them as a matter of course did not occur to me until I began to focus more intently on their wHOLe health.
Maintaining a healthy gut and the digestive flora that thrives there is so important to good health, both in people and pets. Poor diet weakens or destroys the good bacteria in the digestive tract making the breakdown of foods and the concomitant absorption of nutrients more difficult or impossible. When we get sick because our immune system is weakened by poor nutrition, we take synthetic medications to rid ourselves of symptoms, which further inhibits normal gut function. When we don’t absorb nutrients, then the food we ingest is literally a waste. We get hungry again quickly, and before long, we are in a cycle of just filling the hole without thinking too much about what is being tossed in there. We have no energy, we turn to sugar and caffeine to get through the day, we gain weight. Sound familiar?
We treat our dogs the same way. We are all guilty of giving little or no thought to what we toss in the bowl.
Scoop a cup of kibble from the bag and go on about our lives. (Please stop)
We get frustrated when they come begging. We supplement with doggie junk food (Snausages, anyone?), or we train to control the behavior without thinking that maybe they really are hungry because their nutrition is deficient.
If you popped a multi-vitamin and chased it with a bowl of cereal twice a day, would you look longingly at someone else’s hot meal? Probably.
One simple way to improve the gut health of your dog, even if you’re still not on board with a RAW, wHOLe food diet, is to supplement with probiotics. They are of course in yogurt (thank you Jamie Lee), kefir, and more recently, I found them in the raw goat’s milk that A+ Answers makes. It’s an additional protein source that is easier for dogs to digest than cow’s milk. A+ Answers has fortified the “Additional Answers” raw, fermented milk with curds containing over 200 different living species of probiotics.
Goat’s milk is also a natural antihistamine. Adding local raw honey to the goat’s milk has made a difference, particularly in Truman’s nasal allergies. Pugs, with their short noses, have a tendency to cough & snot, sneeze & wheeze. Compared to my previous Pugs, these guys do so at a very minimum. I rather enjoy waking up to a Pug in my face when he doesn’t spray me with the former residents of his nasal passages.
I highly recommend A+ Answers raw goat’s milk. A couple of ounces at each meal is all you need.
Pour a little love!
pugs & kisses,