5 Ways To Help Get Rid Of Dog Gas
A little gas here and there is perfectly normal in dogs.
But what happens when this happens too frequently or when your dog’s gas suddenly clears the room? The truth is that gas could be a sign of a serious problem that requires medical care, especially when passing gas comes together with other symptoms, such as foul odors, diarrhea, and more. “Stomach gurgling (noises in the belly) and unpleasant odors can definitely be a sign of a problem for your pet,” says Dr. Amanda Nascimento, DVM, the NHV’s Natural Pet’s in-house veterinarian.
While flatulence is more common in brachycephalic dogs—such as Bulldogs, Pugs, Boxers, and Boston Terriers—it can affect any breed of dog. “In brachycephalic breeds or in animals that swallow a lot of air when they are breathing or eating, the production of gasses may be more evident,” Nascimento adds.
Fido Ate Too Much…Air?
One of the most common causes of flatulence is too much air in the belly. “This could be due to them swallowing a lot of air, which is very common with dogs that eat too fast,” says Nascimento.
If you have a dog who just swallows all the food in his bowl in seconds, try switching to smaller meals throughout the day rather than two big ones. You can also try a slow feeder bowl or use a treat-dispensing toy to feed your dog, as this will cause them to eat much slower.
Another reason your pup may be flatulent is because they are producing too many gases through bacterial fermentation of the intestine, according to Nascimento. Your vet will decide what tests are needed to figure out what’s causing this.
“In some cases, a feces test may be needed to make sure that your pet does not have parasites, giardia, or pathological bacteria,” Nascimento says. “Then, based on the results of the test, you may need to start your pup on some form of treatment, which could be antibiotics or deworming, depending on the problem.”
Probiotics and Digestive Supplements
The Honest Kitchen makes a great digestion supplement for cats and dogs called Perfect Form. Perfect Form has herbs like slippery elm, fennel, and plantain to help soothe and protect the GI tract and reduce loose stools and gas from environmental stress, dietary indiscretion, or transitioning to a new diet.
Time for a Diet Change
If the problem continues or doesn’t seem to resolve with medication, Nascimento points out that it might sometimes be necessary to change your pet’s diet. Some dogs might be allergic to an ingredient in the food you’re feeding, or you might need to switch to a higher-quality food that doesn’t contain fillers or is lower in carbohydrates or fat. “It is important to avoid garlic, onions, soybeans, dairy products, and any ingredients that can be toxic to your pet,” Nascimento says. “It’s also a good idea to walk your dog 30 minutes after each meal, as this can help with digestion and the elimination of gases.”
When to See the Vet
While an occasional toot isn’t the end of the world (whether you’re a person or a dog), repetitive gas-passing strongly suggests a problem with the diet or a problem with the intestines, or both, according to Dr. Bruce Silverman, VMD, MBA from Village West Veterinary. “An extreme of this could result in gas distention and significant discomfort or worse, and should certainly be taken seriously,” Silverman says.