The Ultimate Guide to Feeding Dogs With Sensitive Stomachs

Dogs with sensitive stomachs need a special diet to help them feel their best. Fortunately, there are many options for canine meals that can ease stomach discomfort and promote better digestion. Check out this ultimate guide to find the best food for your pup's sensitive stomach.

Understand Food Sensitivities and Allergies.

Knowing the difference between food sensitivities and allergies is essential for your pup's health. A food sensitivity occurs when a dog's stomach reacts negatively to something in the diet. Common symptoms of a sensitive stomach include vomiting, diarrhea, flatulence, or abdominal pain. Food allergies, on the other hand, can involve more severe reactions including inflammation and hives. Pay attention to your pup's eating habits and talk with your veterinarian if you suspect either food sensitivity or an allergy.

Is Your Dog's Food to Blame for Their Sensitive Stomach?

Common dietary culprits for indigestion include the type of protein, insufficientDogs with Stomach Sensitivities fiber and excess fat.
The majority of foods that dogs have issues tolerating  involve a reaction to the protein source, such as chicken, beef or egg. Most dogs with food allergies will also have other symptoms, such as recurring skin and ear infections.
Food intolerances are more common than allergies and can arise from any ingredient in a diet. An intolerance occurs when a dog has difficulty digesting a certain ingredient. For example, fats and oils are difficult for many dogs to digest.

How to Manage Your Dog's Sensitive Stomach

An intermittent episode of vomiting or diarrhea is not uncommon, but persistent symptoms should be addressed by your veterinarian. Your vet will want to perform a thorough physical exam to assess your pet's overall health.,
Since there are many causes of indigestion other than food, such as intestinal parasites and viral infections, these will need to be ruled out before focusing on your dog's diet.

Try a Bland Diet as a Short-Term Fix

A temporary switch to a bland diet may be the best option to help resolve your dog's immediate digestive issues. These ingredients include:
  • Boiled, plain chicken and rice are usually well tolerated, and small amounts of boiled or steamed pumpkin may help resolve diarrhea.
  • probiotic, which is usually offered as a powder or liquid supplement that you add to your dog's food.Probiotics help to restore healthy bacterial populations in the intestine in order to improve digestive function.
Sensitive stomach diets for dogs usually:
Have plenty of fiber ingredients, such as psyllium or beet pulp, to help firm up loose stools.
Contain low amounts of fat, which is helpful because fat can be difficult for many dogs to digest.

Choose a Food Designed Specifically for Dogs With Sensitive Stomachs.

When choosing a food for your pup's sensitive stomach, it’s important to opt for one designed specifically for this purpose. Look for foods that contain a single source of protein and carbohydrates, as well as easily digestible ingredients such as squash, potatoes, or rice. Vegetables are also great foils for sensitive stomachs as they provide plenty of vitamins and minerals without aggravating digestion. Avoid foods with too many preservatives and artificial flavorings which can further complicate digestion. For more guidance on selecting the best food formula, contact your vet.

Always follow the directions for transitioning your pet to their new food. When in doubt, it's best to ask your veterinarian if your pet's diet is appropriate for their specific needs. 
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Focus on Quality Ingredients.

When selecting a food for your pup with a sensitive stomach, opt for kibble that is designed to be gentle and easy to digest. Be sure to select high quality formulas made with natural ingredients like meat, broth, easily digestible carbohydrates, and fats with optimal Omega-3 fatty acid levels. Look for grain-free options if possible as grains can also cause digestive problems in some dogs. Make sure to avoid any artificial colors, dyes, flavorings, or preservatives as these could cause further discomfort.

Try Small Adjustments or Home-Cooked Meals.

If kibble isn't working for your pup with a sensitive stomach, try rotating through several different brands and varieties. Performing small adjustments can be beneficial and might help identify potential problem ingredients in the food. The same small adjustments principle holds true if you're mix- feeding a home-cooked diet. Try preparing meals with different proteins and vegetables to see if any particular combinations are easier on your pup’s system. Most importantly, when experimenting, take it slow and introduce one new food at a time over a period of 4 weeks or more to track which foods could be causing an allergic reaction or distress.

Be Patient and Give your Dog Time to Adjust

Anytime you switch your pet's diet, it's best to transition the food slowly over a period of 7-10 days. A sudden change in diet can worsen your dog's digestive issues and make it more difficult to resolve symptoms.,
Finally, remember that each dog has unique needs, which means that no single diet will be appropriate for all dogs with digestive issues.,
You may need to try several diets before you find one that is well tolerated by your pet. This process can take several weeks or months, but the reward will be worth it for you and your pet.
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