Prevent Your Dog From Passing Gas

’It’s mostly the vegetable portion of the foods’

Dog

Dreamstime

On Thursday, Dr. Mike Hutchinson, Veterinarian and Owner of The Animal General in Cranberry, joined KDKA Radio for his weekly visit. These are the questions that were proposed to Dr. Mike, and his answers follow.

Our dog has a serious problem with passing gas and it is HORRIBLE to put it politely for radio.  We have tried different brands of food and have been very careful to wean him onto it slowly.  His stools always look normal, but it makes no difference with his gas production whatsoever.  Help please!!!  My husband thinks if we were to harness his gas, we could heat our home! 

“There’s 3,000 brands of foods out there and some dogs just don’t do well with some of them and we think it’s mostly the vegetable portion of the foods that causes this gas production, or the carbohydrate portion. Switching the diets is a perfect thing to try and usually I recommend going to a higher quality food.”

“If that doesn’t work, I would use enzymes which helps digest or predigest gas and carbohydrates, and also some probiotics - the good bacteria that we like to populate our intestines so that they help manage some of this gas.”

I know that you recommend fish oil capsules that contain Omega 3 fatty acids for dogs.  Our dog was recently found to have an allergy to fish.  Can I use a different Omega 3 fatty acid from Flax seed instead? 

“If they have an allergy to fish, it’s almost always to the protein in fish, not to the fat in fish. I would say, carefully speak to your veterinarian. I don’t think your dog is going to be allergic to the Omega 3 fatty acids. I think they’re only allergic to the protein, because that’s the larger molecule that usually causes the allergy. I would stick to the fish oil if it were my dog.”

My dog was diagnosed with Giardia, a parasite that she contracted from water frequented by wildlife according to my vet.  With all of the wildlife in Western, PA, how in the world do I prevent re-introducing my dog to it?

“When it’s outdoors, it forms a cyst to protect itself from the environment so it’s hard to rid. Obviously if you added bleach to it you could kill it, but that would kill your lawn. I would seek out a professional if your dog keeps getting re-infected.”

“Adult dogs typically don’t have any clinical signs and will generally pass. In puppies and kittens it can cause severe diarrhea, sometimes vomiting, and they can dehydrate and die.”

“It is difficult to get rid of the yard. I’ve seen some things where they put tarps over the yard, heat up the lawn, and do it for 4-6 weeks. Usually that doesn’t become a problem if you just clean up the feces, wear gloves, and do all of the proper things.”

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