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Probiotics are beneficial microorganisms that live in the digestive tract, and probiotics for dogs are essential for maintaining an optimum intestinal microbial balance in your pet.
Bacteria live in all parts of a dog’s digestive system. There are some in the stomach, an increased number in the intestines, with most bacteria living in your dog’s colon.
Probiotics for dogs are needed when the balance between healthy and disease-causing microbes becomes disrupted. You might even consider giving your healthy dog a probiotic if they are prone to diarrhea.
As is always recommended, consult with your veterinarian about probiotics and other supplements that might benefit your pet. Another supplement with a wide range of benefits for your dog is fish oil, and we have a list of The Best Fish Oil For Dogs 2021.
Table of Contents
Best Probiotics For Dogs
|Probiotics for Dogs||Features||Ratings|
|Purina Probiotics||Promotes normal intestinal microflora||5|
|Nusentia||No gluten or dairy||4.9|
|PetVitality||Boosts energy and stamina||4.8|
|Amazing Probiotics||Contains 7 billion CFU probiotics||4.8|
|Zesty Paws||Supports gut flora||4.7|
Our Review Of the Five Best Probiotics For Dogs
Purina FortiFlora is for dietary management in both puppies and adult dogs that have problems with diarrhea. Purina FortiFlora is a safe and effective probiotic dog supplement that is easy for the pet parent to administer.
Just add the powder to your dog’s regular food. FortiFlora works to help support your dog’s digestive health. Purnia packages the FortiFlora in individual packets that contain a level of live microorganisms that will promote the beneficial intestinal microflora.
Out of over 18,000 reviewers on Amazon, 85% of reviewers gave Purina FortiFlora a five out of five-star rating.
- Comes in individually packaged portions
- Easy to administer; just add to pet’s regular food
- Promotes normal intestinal microflora
Purina recommends using one packet daily over your dog’s food.
Nusentia Probiotic Miracle fortifies the intestinal lining of dogs. Made specifically for dogs’ intestinal and digestive needs (and cats), Nusentia supplies your pet with probiotics that will help fortify and strengthen gut health.
They will help to support a healthy immune system and fight loose stools and diarrhea. Nusentia is a concentrated powder that you sprinkle over your pet’s regular food.
It contains six thoroughly researched species of beneficial bacteria that help sustain a healthy balance of flora in your pet’s digestive system. These probiotics will also help reduce gas, bad breath, and bloating.
- No fillers
- No gluten or dairy
- Aids in yeast control
Nusentia recommends that you use the scoop provided and give dogs under 50 lbs one scoop daily. If your dog is over 50 lbs, give them two scoops daily.
In the form of a duck-flavored soft chew, PetVitalityPro can be given to your pet and they will think it is a treat. These probiotic chews have over 20 active ingredients and include a green superfood formula.
If you have a pet that is cautious of new treats, these soft chews are easily crumbled and added to their regular food.
PetVitality helps gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea, loose stool, upset stomachs, and yeast infections. Yet, it will work to support a strong and balanced digestive system.
- Boosts energy and stamina
- Supports and restores digestive tract after antibiotic treatment
- Protects against infections
Daily, PetVitality recommends that you give your dog their probiotic soft chew based on the dog’s weight. Up to 10 pounds, give one soft chew, 10 – 30 lbs, give 2 soft chews, 30 – 60 lbs, give 3 soft chews, and dogs that are over 60 pounds should get 4 soft chews daily.
A two-in-one product from Amazing Nutritionals, these supplements for dogs will help support both digestive conditions and supply joint pain relief to your pet.
These probiotics have live, natural “good bacteria” and enzymes that will strengthen your dog’s immune system. They will reduce gas and help manage occasional diarrhea.
Amazing Nutritionals formula also has glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM to support healthy joints and ease joint discomfort for dogs with arthritis.
These chewable tablets are naturally flavored with bacon and liver, making them easy to administer to your pet.
- Both digestive and joint pain support
- Contains 7 billion CFU probiotics
- Veterinarian recommended
Amazing Nutritionals recommends that as a maintenance supplement, you should give your dog one tablet per day. If your dog is experiencing difficulties, you may give your dog up to 4 of the chewable tablets daily until their system balances itself.
Zesty Paws Probiotic Bites are a top choice and an all-natural supplement that works well for large and small dogs.
Each probiotic chicken-flavored bite has 4mg of PreforPro, a premium pet prebiotic clinically proven to support healthy gut bacteria.
Zesty Paws chewable supplement includes DE111, as spore-forming bacillus subtilis that supports gut microflora and digestion for dogs of all ages.
These supplements also contain pumpkin and bromelain to help support regularity and overall digestive health.
- Supports gut flora
- Gives immune system support
- No artificial flavors or preservatives
Zesty Paws recommends that you begin with half of the suggested amount and gradually increase the suggested daily amount when you first introduce these soft chews to your dog. They suggest that dogs up to 25 lbs get one soft chew a day. Dogs that are 26 – 75 lbs should be two soft chews a day. Dogs over 75 lbs should get 3 soft chews a day. Zesty Paws says that you can split the amounts given between AM and PM.
How To Care For Probiotics For Dogs Once Purchased
A probiotic is live bacteria that are adapted to live in the gastrointestinal tract. Exposure to moisture, temperature extremes, or the air will damage the viability of the bacteria.
Some probiotics are packaged in individual serving packages to help prevent that damage.
When you purchase your probiotic, don’t leave it sitting in a hot car while doing other shopping, as that could affect the product’s viability.
Look at the care label on the package that you purchase and follow the instructions carefully to help keep the probiotics “alive.”
When You Should Use A Probiotic For Dogs
Probiotics are used to maintain the appropriate intestinal microbial balance in your pet’s intestinal tract.
When your pet is sick or stressed, the balance between the healthy and disease-causing microbes can get disrupted. This disruption can lead to diarrhea, gas, cramping, and even bad breath.
These can be some of the triggers for digestive disorders:
- An infection
- Stress such as being boarded, moving to a new home, or new additions to the family. Many of the same stressors that humans experience can be stressors for dogs, too.
- Change in diet.
- Aging can cause changes in the intestinal tract.
Even if your dog is healthy but experiences diarrhea occasionally, it is wise to give them a probiotic. If you know that you will need to board your dog or that a future event will stress them, it is good to start them on probiotics a few days before.
Do Probiotics For Dogs Work?
According to Teresa Manucy, DVM, we are beginning to understand the benefits of probiotics for dogs, but there are some things that we already know.
Probiotics for dogs do aid in digestion, they do help modulate the immune system, and they provide intestinal benefits by inhibiting harmful bacteria.
Some pet owners wonder if dogs can take human probiotics, and the answer to that question is yes, they can. Human probiotics are not harmful to dogs.
However, human probiotics do not provide the same benefits as species-specific supplements, so it is best to choose a probiotic that is made specifically for dogs.
Probiotics for dogs are an easy solution to your dog’s diarrhea and intestinal troubles. As always, consult your vet before you add probiotics to your dog’s diet.
Dogs respond well to a supplement of beneficial microbes to bring the digestive microflora back in balance.
Ian is an avid outdoorsman and dog lover. He lives in Central Florida with his wife Heather, and their 2 dogs – Panda (Purebread Rough Collie X English Golden Retriever) & Kuma (Blue Merl Purebread Rough Collie)