Nobody knows your pup better than you do. But that doesn’t mean we can’t all use a little extra knowledge to better understand their inner workings. To that end, being able to treat your dog’s indigestion is a great way to ensure your dog lives a happy and healthy life. Improving your dog’s digestion will not only keep his GI tract running how it should, but it will also prevent further digestive issues later in life.
Just like us, dogs depend on their digestive system to process the food(s) they ingest and absorb the appropriate nutrients. The canine digestive process is a good indication of a dog’s health in general, so if you begin to see concerning symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea, it may be time to call your veterinarian. According to the American Society for Microbiology, new microbiology-inspired strategies for managing your pet’s indigestion are at the forefront of pet science and medicine. This means that now is the perfect time to benefit from our helpful guide on treating indigestion in dogs!
What is Dog Indigestion?
At its core, dog indigestion is exactly as it sounds; improper digestion within the gastrointestinal tract. Difficulty in digesting certain substances can result in unpleasant or even drastic symptoms.
While not all problems need professional dog indigestion treatment, it’s advised that, should the problems persist, you take your dog to a veterinarian to ensure there isn’t a bigger issue at play.
Symptoms of Indigestion in Dogs
The main symptoms with dog indigestion are:
- Adverse Breathing
- Lethargy (low energy)
- White Gums
A Helpful Guide to Treating Dog Indigestion
When it comes to indigestion and general canine digestive problems, small changes can have immense impacts. Usually, if a dog owner is thorough and observant, they can curb the issues on their own. Thus, a few things you can do to help your dog’s indigestion include:
- Adding Prebiotics – Prebiotics help promote the production of good bacteria that live inside your pups digestive system. From the stomach to the intestines, it’s vital that your dog has the right amount of prebiotics keen to their diet. Any microbiome imbalance will directly affect your dog’s ability to absorb nutrients. This means they’ll have a harder time producing usable energy from their caloric intake. Supplement prebiotics. Your dog’s tummy will be forever grateful.
- Adding Digestive Enzymes – The stomach is where partially digested food is stored and broken down. As detailed by Vet MD, it’s where the pancreas delivers enzymes to help break down fats and proteins for absorption by other organs. However, as your dog ages or changes their diet, they can experience indigestion from grain-heavy foods or a higher fat intake. Thus, your dog can benefit from a supplement that promotes digestive enzymes, aiding in their digestive response.
- High Quality Foods – One of the easiest ways for dog owners to treat a digestive problems in their furry companions is to switch to higher quality foods that utilize all natural ingredients, vitamins, minerals, fruits, and vegetables. The higher quality the dog food, the richer it will be in nutrients and the easier it’ll be to digest. You’d be surprised at how many digestive disorders are spurred by low-quality kibble.
- Fresh Air and Nature – Dogs need fresh air just like we do. And while it can be easy to forget how large a role metabolism plays in fighting indigestion, we all know how much our dogs love going for a hike or walk. It’s not only a great way to jumpstart their metabolism and promote exercise, naturally occurring bacteria permeates everywhere in nature and can be beneficial to their digestive system.
- Dog Vitamins and Supplements – Dog vitamins and supplements are the perfect way to make sure your dog is protected against indigestion and other digestive disorders. In today’s dog vitamin and supplement market, science-backed formulas have rendered them necessary. Probiotic supplements and vitamins can not only treat indigestion but prevent it from ever developing.
- Homemade Meals – It’s important that your dog, if dealing with indigestion, starts to eat low-acidity dog food. Then, if your veterinarian approves, you can feed them vegetables, lean proteins (think boiled chicken or skinless baked potatoes), and even broccoli or rice. The idea here is to reset your dog’s digestive system by providing him or her with nutritious and low-acid substances.
Consult With Your Veterinarian
Your dog’s digestive health is paramount to its overall well-being. Consult with your veterinarian immediately if any symptoms of indigestion persist. While this helpful guide is an effective tool for treating dog indigestion, certain symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting can be signs of serious health problems. While it’s likely no more than an upset stomach, we encourage you to be as safe as possible.
Talk to your veterinarian today to ensure your dog’s current indigestive treatments are applicable, and know that indigestion is usually 100% treatable!
- Vet Med. Digestive System of the Dog.
- Easy Anatomy. Anatomy of the Canine Digestive System. https://easy-anatomy.com/canine-digestive-system/
- PHYS.ORG. Study Shows How a Dog’s Diet Shapes its Gut Microbiome. https://phys.org/news/2017-01-dog-diet-gut-microbiome.html
Dr. Melinda J. Mayfield-Davis, DVM, WCHP-AH, brings over 20 years of experience in veterinary medicine. She is the Technical Services Veterinarian with Innovacyn, Inc., parent company of Vetericyn Animal Wellness. She received her DVM from Oklahoma State University and now resides in Southeast Kansas with her husband, two children, four dogs, and six horses. Prior to working with Innovacyn, Dr. Mayfield owned and operated the Animal Care Center in Columbus, KS.