Reducing Air Pollution: Flatulence in Dogs

by Claudia Loomis

Intestinal gas, or flatulence, is a natural by-product of digestion. The good news is that the amount of gas released by your pet is greatly influenced by a number of factors which can be affected by making some lifestyle changes. The malodorous effects of digestion can also be reduced significantly by making changes in what, and how, you feed your pet.

It is true that some breeds produce more gas than others, just sit between say a Pug and a Samoyed after they have both eaten the same dinner. Pound for pound the Pug emits more foul smelling farts then any Samoyed I have ever known. 

Dogs can also become more flatulent as they age, since your pet’s intestines start to progressively lose their muscle tone and waste remains in the intestines for longer periods before being eliminated.

Even the most effluent dogs can be helped by these tips:
• Feed food that has no corn, wheat or soy- these ingredients are difficult for pets to digest and therefore they sit in the intestines longer, fermenting and causing a build-up of gas.
• Animal By-Products are also a no-no, as this is a low quality form of protein which is also difficult to digest.
• If Fido is a fast eater, you may want to consider feeding him two smaller meals a day instead of one large meal, this will prevent overtaxing his digestion system and food will not be sitting in his intestines waiting to be digested, all the while fermenting and causing an accumulation of gas.
• A slow feed bowl will also help him to eat slower so he will gulp in less air while he eats his food.
• Remove your pet’s food after a while if he does not consume it all in one session. Periods of fasting are an important tool for effective digestion.
• Exercise your pet regularly. Exercise will help move the gas out of your dog’s system so he does not pollute the house. Also, exercise will help stimulate bowel movements which will also lessen the outbreak of gas. Not to mention that a fit and healthy pet that receives regular exercise will have a healthier digestion system in general.
• Last, but certainly not least, use a digestive enzyme and probiotic supplement, such as Naturvet Enzymes and Probiotics, or Wholistic Pet Digest All Plus, to aid in efficient and complete digestion. This will have many positive benefits including a marked reduction in flatulence