Dietary Management of Dog Flatulence

While a small amount of dog flatulence is normal, too much can be embarrassing and uncomfortable, and might also be a sign that your dog has some digestive trouble. Flatulence in dogs is usually not a sign of serious health problems and can be cleared up with easy dietary management.

Feed Your Dog the Best Possible Food

Dogs should be fed the highest quality dog food available, preferably a veterinarian recommended brand which lists a type of meat such as chicken, beef or lamb as the top ingredient. This means there is a larger proportion of meat than other ingredients. Dog foods often contain fillers that might help to make your dog feel full, but have little nutritional benefit and can contribute to flatulence or in some cases, to allergies.

Dog foods which contain soy can also react badly in a dog's digestive system, leading to flatulence, so try finding a dog food which does not list soy as one of the ingredients. Don't change your dog's diet too quickly, as this could also upset their stomach. Add increasing amounts of the new type of food over a week or so, until the dog is only eating the new product.

Change Your Dog's Eating Habits

Dogs should never be fed table scraps, as many human foods can upset their digestive systems. In particular, many dogs are lactose intolerant and so they shouldn't be fed anything containing milk. This can lead not only to flatulence, but also to stomach discomfort and diarrhea.

If your dog tends to gulp his food down very quickly, he might be swallowing air that can contribute to a flatulence problem. Feeding him smaller meals more frequently and trying not to excite him during feeding times can help to reduce this problem. Try to feed dogs separately, as feeding them together encourages them to eat quicker, in competition with the other dog. Exercise can also help, by encouraging the gas to move while the dog is outside the house. Vigorous exercise like chasing a ball is better than a slow walk.

Flatulence Remedies

There are some remedies available for flatulent dogs at your local veterinarian or pet store. Activated charcoal can help to absorb gases in the digestive system. However, charcoal should not be fed to dogs for more than two or three days, because it also absorbs some of the vitamins they need for good health. There are enzyme supplements available that will allow your dog to digest food better and can help to reduce flatulence. However, in general, medications and supplements should be kept to a minimum, as they can contribute to poor digestion and flatulence. In some cases it might help to feed your dog a spoonful of natural yogurt, as the bacteria in yogurt can help to digest food.

Dog flatulence is a normal part of digestion and will never be entirely eliminated. However, it can be controlled by keeping your dog's digestive system as healthy as possible through dietary management.