Canine flatulence is not a fun thing to experience. Dogs tend to have very smelly gas and, apart from the nasal assault, you’ll notice that your pet is rather uncomfortable as well. Gas in dogs can be the result of several different problems and it is best to try and figure out which one is the issue before you attempt to treat your dog.
Possible Causes of Canine Gas
Your dog is most likely suffering from a fairly minor problem, but in some cases, gas can be a sign of something more serious. If your dog appears to be in severe pain or has gone off his food, be sure to see your vet immediately. Anytime you suspect the problem could be serious, call your vet. You know your pet better than anyone else and you should follow your instincts.
Now, let`s look at some of the most common problems that cause gas in dogs.
Eating too fast. This is especially an issue in larger breeds, such as German Shepherds. If your dog is eating too quickly, he is gulping down air, as well, which reaches his intestines quickly and comes out the other end as gas. Try giving your dog smaller amounts of food, a bit at a time, to teach him to eat slower.
Change in food. Some dogs are particularly sensitive to changes in diet and you may find that if you buy another brand of food, your dog will suffer from flatulence. This can also happen when too many table scraps are given. This can be tested by going back to the original food brand for a few days . . . the gas should be gone. The best way to avoid this problem is to make diet changes very gradual, mixing a small amount of the new food with the regular food and slowly increasing it.
Intestinal worms. Worms are notorious for causing gassiness and it can be quite unpleasant for your dog. Check your dog`s stool for signs of worms. It`s also a good idea to de-worm your pet at least once a year, but if you find nasty critters in his feces, you may need to do this more often. Whether you de-worm at home or have the vet do it is up to you.
Poor diet. Not all dog food is the same. Some are made almost entirely out of wheat or other similar grains and this is definitely not friendly for a dog`s stomach. An overabundance of fiber or the wrong type of carbs can wreak havoc on your puppy`s digestive system and result in dog gas. To solve this issue, invest in good quality dog food that is correctly balanced for your animal.
Slow intestinal tract. Dogs get out of shape, just like humans, and this often results in constipation and extra gas. If you want to reduce the chances of this occurring or to fix an existing problem, you will need to help your dog stay fit. A nice long stroll after dinner will help your and the dog`s digestive system function faster.
Bad bacteria in the intestine. Sometimes, when your dog is eating or mouthing things that he shouldn`t, bad bacteria get into his body. These can cause all sorts of problems in the intestines and it`s a good idea to get rid of them. This is possible by adding probiotics (good bacteria) to your dog`s food to reestablish a balance of healthy bacteria.
You don`t have to live with nasty gas and neither does your dog. Check the symptoms and you should be able to diagnose and treat minor problems yourself. However, if you ever have doubts, don`t hesitate to talk to your vet.