Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Probiotics for your dog

Dr. Mercola has a great article on pet health to consider:

Dogs, cats and snakes are carnivores, with sharp, interlocking teeth designed to grasp prey.

Cats and snakes are obligate carnivores, which means they must consume a meat diet to maintain health, whereas dogs are scavenging carnivores, who, in addition to a meat based diet, can consume other types of foods without dire consequences.

What Happens if My Pet’s Gut Bacteria Gets Out of Balance?

Immune reactions provoked by an imbalance in intestinal bacteria can seriously compromise your pet’s health.

Inflammatory conditions and several types of arthritis have been linked to abnormal GI responses in both people and pets. Intestinal permeability is increased in a wide range of diseases. When excessive amounts of antigens (small reactive proteins) are absorbed, all sorts of systemic reactions can occur.

An overgrowth of bad intestinal bacteria can contain proteins that your pet’s immune system may mistake for healthy proteins, sparking an abnormal immune response.

This inflammatory cascade can create a number of symptoms and degenerative changes in your pet’s body.

In people, the link between dysbiosis and atopic dermatitis, chronic pancreatitis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and rheumatoid arthritis has been established.

Can any of these conditions develop in your pet? Yes -- all of them.

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