5 min read
How to Prevent Your Dog from Having Gas
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If you have a dog, you have probably had to deal with all the smells that come with dogs. The smell of wet dog who has played in the rain is something difficult to get out of your furniture and carpets. The smell of dog food as they drop it on your floor while eating is something only dog owners can relate to. But the smell of a gassy dog is one dog smell dog owners and their guests don't want to have to deal with.
Excessive flatulence in your dog could be a sign of medical problems, or it could be something as simple as your dog's diet and how he eats his meals. It is not only uncomfortable for you, your family members, and your guests who have to smell it, but if your dog is experiencing gas on a regular basis, he could possibly have a tummy ache and be feeling some discomfort as well.
Causes and Prevention of Gas
One of the first things you may want to look at if your dog is experiencing excessive flatulence is his diet. If your dog is eating people food, his diet could be causing uncomfortable stomach issues. Foods such as beans or dairy could cause excessive gas in your dog. Foods that are high in fat content or spicy could also contribute to this excessive flatulence. If you need to make a change in your dog's diet, be sure to make slow changes so his stomach adjusts. A quickly changing diet could cause other stomach issues, including pain and additional gas.
Your dog's diet should be a veterinarian recommended a high-quality diet that is low in fiber and with a proper balance of fat and protein for your dog's breed, skin, and coat as well as their size. If you are looking to change your dog's food you might want to consider changing the source of protein. For example, if your dog’s primary source of protein in his current food is chicken, you may look into food which has lamb as the protein source instead. As with any diet change, make the switch slowly by mixing the new food with the old food for several meals before completely switching to the new food.
While you're feeding your dog, be sure his food and water bowls are at the proper height for his size. Taller dogs and large breed dogs eat and digest their meals much better if they are at chest level, leaving your dog upright and not bending over to eat.
Changing your dog's diet might take some time. If your dog is dealing with stomach pains, bloating, and excessive gas you might want to eliminate all people foods and slowly switch to a different protein source dog food. Once your dog is used to the new high-quality dog food, begin to introduce healthy fruits, vegetables, and fresh proteins into your dog's diet one food at a time to eliminate additional issues with your dog's stomach and gastrointestinal system.
Another reason your dog could be extremely gassy is how he eats his meals. Some dogs tend to gulp food very quickly. Instead of eating slow enough to chew, swallow, and digest, dogs may swallow excessive air as they eat very quickly. Raising your dog's bowl to chest height, so he doesn't have to bend over, certainly helps many dogs to digest food and swallow easily.
If your dog is still a quick eater, gulping food down as if it won't be available before he is finished, you may want to consider purchasing a slow feed bowl which forces your dog to slow down as he eats. Often, these bowls look like mazes with the food in various compartments or raised sections of the bowl your dog will have to eat around. These bowls are made to keep the dog from eating too fast. You can make a bowl at home by placing a small bowl upside down inside a larger bowl and putting the food around the small bowl. This will force your dog to slow down while eating, which will help with digestion and keep your dog from gulping whole food pieces and swallowing too much air.
Another thing to look at if your dog is experiencing excessive flatulence are probiotics. Probiotics add good bacteria to your dog's gut. Balancing the gastrointestinal system might be just what your dog needs to end the smells he leaves across your house. Probiotics are easy to add to your dog's food. You can sprinkle probiotics or digestive enzymes over your dog's meal for easy intake and digestion of good bacteria.
If your dog is obese or overweight, his flatulence issues might be related. If your dog is a healthy eater with a great diet, he will have far less gas than an obese dog with a poor diet. Getting your dog some exercise along with healthy diet changes will not only help him to lose weight, but will also help with excessive gas.
Importance of Prevention
Preventing gas from your dog can make everyone in your home more comfortable. No one has to smell the stench coming from your dog if his tummy issues are resolved and the gas ends--or is at least less frequent! But more importantly, as we all might know, a gassy stomach is often painful. If you can prevent gas from building in your dog’s body, he will be more comfortable and with fewer stomach aches. Over longer periods of time, with healthier habits, your dog’s overall health will also improve.
If you’ve changed your dog from an unhealthy diet to healthier choices or if you have helped your dog reach and maintain a healthier weight, he will be likely to live longer with fewer opportunities for disease.
Keeping Everybody Happy
We all know how bad it can be sitting in a room with a gassy dog. It’s stinky and smelly and often embarrassing, especially if we have company in our homes. But remember: there are reasons for a dog to be gassy. Sometimes these reasons can be an underlying health problem you are not aware of until you begin to prevent the issue of gas.
Thankfully, this stinky problem is often easily fixed over a few weeks with a change in diet and better-managed eating habits. Before your dog ruins your family movie night again, help get his digestive tract in order and prevent gas from forcing you out of a room.