How to Help Prevent Dog Flatulence
Prevent Dog Flatulence
Sometimes noxious surprises come in cute, furry packages. See the sweet-looking girl dog to the right? That is Luna and I adore her, but some days she seems like the world's most flatulent dog. All dogs pass gas now and then, but some dogs just seem to be at it nonstop!
Luckily, there are a few easy steps you can take to help prevent dog flatulence. Take a minute to discover them - you'll have more fun hanging out with your dog and Fido will have a happier tummy!
High-protein, grain-free dog foods do cost more, but they result in a happier, healthier pet. I usually buy my dog food for less online and take advantage of free shipping deals.
Foods that Cause Dog Flatulence
Just like humans, dogs are affected by what they eat. Dogs are omnivores and are capable of digesting some plant matter, but they need high protein diets. Many plant foods with indigestible sugars or fibers give dogs gas, so avoid feeding your dog:
Other foods can cause dog flatulence, too, including cauliflower, onions, garlic, and soybeans. Unfortunately, soy and corn are popular fillers in inexpensive dog food, but dogs aren't designed to eat either product! Soy-filled dog food is a common cause of dog flatulence.
To prevent dog flatulence with diet, check your dog food bag label. If corn or soy rank high on the ingredient list, consider switching to a different type of dog food. Premium, high-protein, grain-free dog foods do cost more than filler-full foods, but finding space in your monthly budget for better dog food is worth it. Whenever I buy my dogs premium food, they are less flatulent and better behaved. I know it sounds a little made up, but it actually makes sense. If you feed a human child sugary food or food filled with carbs, he or she will be pretty hyper. Feed the child a wholesome meal and s/he won't experience the sugar rush. The same thing goes for dogs. If you feed them carbohydrate-laden food, they bounce around a lot. If you feed them the types of foods they are supposed to eat, they are less hyper.
Even if premium dog food isn't an option for you, you can still help keep your pooch gas-free by not feeding him/her table scraps. Table scraps are an easy way for your pup to ingest something indigestible. If you want to give Fido and after dinner snack, stick with an actual dog treat.
How to Change your Dog's Eating Habits
A leading cause of dog gas is eating too quickly. Eating food quickly is called "wolfing it down" for a reason! Canines love eating fast. This is definitely one of Luna's problems. She was a homeless puppy before being picked up and brought to the SPCA, so she eats like there is no tomorrow.
When dogs rush through their food, they also take in lots of air. This extra air can cause burping and gas. Even if your dog isn't gassy, it is still important to make sure she does not eat too quickly because fast eating can cause stomach bloat, a potentially fatal condition.
There are many ways to make your dog eat more slowly. You can purchase specialty bowls that are designed to force a dog to eat more slowly, or you can get creative. For example, the video to the right shows a dog who is forced to eat slowly out of a muffin tin. By dividing a dog's meal up into appropriately-sized 'bites,' you can force your dog to eat at a healthier pace.
Don't wait until it's too late! Eating too quickly is a leading cause of dog stomach bloat, a potentially fatal ailment. You could literally save your dog's life by using a specialty bowl like the Brake-Fast.
Special Bowls can Force your Dog to Eat Slowly
Treat Dog Flatulence with a Walk
Talking regular walks with your dog is healthy for you and your pet. Dog's don't just need the chance to do their business, they need to get out and walk (and run). Regular walks help dogs maintain healthy bowel activity, which, in turn, reduces the likelihood that your pup will pass gas in the house.
Be careful not to feed your dog immediately before or after vigorous exercise or his or her digestive problems may get worse! Do you remember your mom telling you to wait 30 minutes after eating before getting in the pool? The same principle applies with dogs. Give your dog plenty of time to digest before running around, and lots of time to cool down after exercise.
Is your dog "stinking up the joint?"
When to Take your Dog to the Vet for Flatulence
Sometimes dog flatulence can be a sign of serious health issues. If you have switched your dog to a highly-digestible food, keep him or her from eating quickly, and take regular walks and your pet is still stinking up the house, it may be time to visit the vet. Worms may cause flatulence, so make sure your dog gets a fecal test each year, but other digestive disorders can also cause intestinal distress.
Fortunately, most dog flatulence is not an indication of a serious disorder and is easily preventable. By making a few changes in your dog's routine, you can make him or her a much nicer pet to live with!