Probiotics for Dogs and Cats
THE BENEFITS OF PROBIOTICS
The word probiotic literally means “for life”. These safe, natural supplements are widely used to help with a variety of short and long-term bowel problems, such as diarrhoea, colitis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), as well as some general health problems. Probiotics help by restoring, maintaining and supporting the growth of those bacteria within the bowel that are beneficial to health. Probiotics also have a number of other positive effects.
BACTERIA and the BOWEL
All animals have friendly bacteria living within their small and large intestine. These bacteria contribute to the functioning of the bowel and are important for supporting good general health, as they help maintain resistance against disease by influencing the immune system. Additionally, they also play a role in assisting the digestion and assimilation of food.
To initially colonise their bowel, new-born animals acquire normal bacteria shortly after birth from their mother and from their surrounding environment. These bacteria are essential to the new-born animal, particularly in relation to the health of the bowel and in promoting resistance against those harmful bacteria likely to cause digestive upsets. Puppies and kittens that fail to develop the right levels of bacteria at this critical early stage are likely to become ill or sickly and will probably develop diarrhoea.
Based upon this knowledge, probiotics were formulated to harness the health benefits offered by those bacteria that naturally inhabit the bowel. It was found that they could be used to treat a wide variety of common health problems in animals of all ages, particularly those conditions related to the digestive system, such as diarrhoea, colitis and malabsorption. It was also found that regular use of probiotics could improve general health.
WHAT IS IN DENES PROBIOTIC+ POWDER?
Denes Probiotic+ Powder is a synergistic blend of Chicory Inulin prebiotic, and Sc1 – 1077 Live Yeast Probiotic.
Its primary function is to deliver or help assure complete and efficient digestion, maximising nutrient uptake for the benefit of the animal.
MODE OF ACTION
This purpose grown, organic chicory root is harvested at the peak of its sugar content in the root or tuber. The sugar content is not digested by enzymes, but only by bacteria in the gut. The sugars are referred to as Fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS)
As opposed to sugar beet, which has a limited range of relatively short chain sugars, chicory root has a complex range of short and long chain sugars.
Short chain sugars tend to be digested early in the digestive process, and do not tend to survive into the hind gut of monogastrics. Most long chain sugars do survive to fuel the reproductive activity of helpful bacteria in the gut. An optimal population of these bacteria helps to ensure complete fermentation of the animals’ diet, reducing incidences of flatulence, dietary looseness, and other common digestive disorders. Additionally, the uptake of all nutrients are increased (where this is possible).
Sc1-1077 LIVE YEAST:
Is a micro-pearled, thermally protected yeast, which has many potential benefits in the digestive process.
In monogastrics the yeast has little effect in the stomach, but will scavenge oxygen if present. When the yeast transits the stomach into the gut it continues to scavenge oxygen, promoting an anaerobic environment which is favoured by the digestive bacteria. As a result, optimal numbers of helpful bacteria are present to complete the breakdown of nutrients, and by weight of numbers, competitively exclude potentially harmful bacteria.
A live yeast cell ‘resides’ for a few days within the digestive tract. It will then be carried away in the faecal stream. However, potentially harmful pathogenic bacteria will attach themselves to the yeast cell in order to consume it. Once attached, they are unable to detach themselves and are therefore also carried out in the faecal stream.
If an animal is consuming up to 2 grams of our live yeast per day, that equates to 100,000,000,000 colony feasible units (CFU’s). If each yeast CFU is carrying multiples of potentially harmful bacteria out with the animal faeces on a daily basis, it naturally limits the potential adverse effects of these bacteria on the host animal.
The presence of live yeast in an animal has also been proved to have the effect of stimulating its auto-immune response. This will have the effect of making that animal more robust, and resistant to disease threats. Its presence also encourages the reproductive activity of fibre fermenting (cellulolytic) bacteria, and lactate scavenging bacteria, which create and maintain the acidic environment.
The combination of yeast and inulin helps to reduce incidences of inappropriate fermentation, which can lead to the onset of most common digestive disorders.
HOW PROBIOTICS AFFECT GENERAL HEALTH
It is not surprising to find that probiotics will have an effect on general health. They act not only by encouraging the growth of good bacteria within the bowel and by suppressing those that are not good for health, but also by enhancing the immune system. This delicate bacterial balance can be easily upset, leading to ill health and digestive upsets.
WHEN TO USE PROBIOTICS
Probiotics are safe to use on a day to day basis, as a way of preventing potential problems, or they can be used as needed, particularly when animals are likely to be stressed. Ideal situations in which to use Denes Probiotic+ Powder include:
- After the use of antibiotics
- During recovery from illness
- After worming
- During and after a stay in a boarding kennel or cattery
- During weaning
- When the diet is changed
- Following travel
- Following surgery
- As a tonic for elderly animals
- Chronic ill health
- Where the digestion is weak
You can also use probiotics to help with some more specific problems:
- Diarrhoea, for both acute and chronic cases
- Colitis, both acute and chronic cases
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Malabsorption syndrome
- Pancreatic disease
- Bloat prevention
Denes Gut Health Probiotic Powder will work alongside other Denes products such as our Respiratory Support (Garlic Oil) Capsules, Liver Support (Milk Thistle+) Powder and Digestion Powder or conventional medicines.
Useful Denes fact sheets: