How can a dog’s microbiome be damaged and how can we restore it?
The microbiome is the amazing community of bacteria and other organisms that live in our dog’s intestines. They help them to digest their food, extract important nutrients and are vital in maintaining overall health and wellness.
The microbiome is seriously incredible and we are really just beginning to discover all the amazing ways it helps and supports our dogs.
But what we do know are some of the things that can damage it or make it function at a less than optimum level and how to help fix that!
The most obvious is antibiotic medications.
These are often prescribed by vets for infections and are safe, effective and should never be avoided if they are required. However, as well as getting rid of the bacteria causing the problem, they can also damage the bacteria in the gut. And studies have shown that the change in the balance of the microbiome can persist for a long time after the antibiotics have finished. This can be countered by using good quality gut support products to aid the microbiome and promote the survival and re-growth of the good bacteria.
Stress can also have a big impact on the gut, particularly in sensitive or anxious dogs who are easily upset. A stay in kennels or even a long car journey can be enough to alter the bacterial balance. Again, using support products before, during and after these events can cushion not only the gut, but also your dog’s state of mind.
One awesome thing the microbiome does is effect mood! A thriving, healthy microbiome can have a really positive impact on behaviour and anxiety in humans and we believe it does the same for dogs as well!
Diet change can also influence the microbiome, which is why our dogs can sometimes develop diarrhoea when we move them to a new food (or they help themselves to a disgusting snack from under a hedge on a walk!). If you need to change your dog’s diet or they develop a self-inflicted runny tummy (!) using a good quality tummy support product for a few days can really help to get their digestion back on track!
Age also has a negative impact, so adding microbiome boosters to our golden oldie’s dinner can help support them in a huge number of ways!
If you have any questions about your pet’s microbiome and how to ensure it thrives, please speak to your vet or you can visit Procanicare UK.