Canine Colitis Diet Recommendations

Canine colitis refers to a painful inflammation of your pet's colon that can lead to diarrhea and other negative effects. Colitis can occur in acute cases as a result of physical or emotional stresses, or it may be chronic in some dogs. In treating these cases, the two primary concerns are relieving the symptoms of the condition and addressing the cause of the ailment itself. A proper colitis diet can help to address both of these issues, at least partially.

Finding the Right Food

Colitis often occurs when pets eat something that their bodies cannot process completely. In some cases, your dog may ingest non-food items like plants or dirt, and for these situations it's best to identify what your dog is getting into and eliminate that behavior. However, in some situations, the ingredient that your pet is reacting negatively to may actually be found in the food that you give him. Certain preservatives can cause colitis, as can chemical dyes and other ingredients that are present in certain brands of dog food.

A certain degree of experimentation may be necessary, and it always helps to work with the advice of a veterinarian, but it is possible to partially or completely eliminate your dog's colitis by adjusting the food that he eats. As a general rule, avoid cheap and low-quality ingredients and also ensure that your pet's food has a minimal percentage of added filler or preservatives. It is best to also eliminate human foods from your pet's diet, as ingredients that our systems can handle are often overwhelming for your dog's body.

Generally, it is best to find one type of food that works for your dog and to stick to it. Your dog may end up reacting best to a formulated commercial diet, or he may require a certain homemade diet that you can craft with the help of a veterinarian.


FOS, or fructooligosaccharide, is a carbohydrate that functions like fiber in your dog's digestive tract. It helps to clean out your pet's colon and eliminate harmful bacteria that may cause inflammation and colitis. There are a number of brands of dog food that contain FOS, including some prescription foods as well. Consult with your veterinarian for a recommendation as to whether this ingredient may help to address your dog's colitis.

Allergy Diets

In some cases, your dog may experience colitis as part of an allergic reaction to a particular ingredient. In these cases, any presence of that ingredient in his food will bring about negative effects on his digestive tract. It is necessary to find a proper hypoallergenic diet for dogs experiencing food allergies. These diets are often quite similar to standard dog foods, but eliminate one specific ingredient that may contribute to allergic reactions. Before feeding your pet a hypoallergenic diet, it is necessary that you first work with a vet to isolate and determine the source of your pet's allergy.

Through a number of dietary changes, you can help to address the symptoms of canine colitis. In some cases, however, additional treatment methods may be necessary. Speak with a veterinarian for more information.