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What to Feed a dog with digestive issues

How to treat digestive issues in dogs.

Just a brief spell of digestive issues will show you how central digestion is to feeling our best. And yet, digestion can feel anything but simple—especially for the estimated 3.1 million U.S. adults diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Digestive woes like IBD are much more common than we tend to realize…

And not just for humans, but pups too! According to the CDC, humans experience IBD as “a chronic inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract [that] is divided into Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.” For our pups, however, IBD is less defined and harder to pick up on. Once we learn about this condition, it’s important to transition our furry friends to gun-supporting solutions like Instinct Raw. So let’s dig in!

Dogs and digestion — here’s the DL.

If dogs could speak, we think all the world’s problems could be solved—including their digestion. But instead, us pet parents are left playing a guessing game. Is our pup vomiting because they ate too much grass? Or is something more serious going on? Treating digestive issues in dogs can be challenging, so it’s imperative to learn.

Let’s start with the basics. For dogs, IBD can show up as recurring chronic vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, or all of the above. And why? IBD in dogs tends to occur as an immune response to an abnormal gut microbiome, thanks to genetics. But recent studies also suggest that environmental factors like pollution, stress, and diet also strongly influence IBD. As it turns out, what your dog is regularly eating has more to do with their digestive distress than we once realized. An important factor to treating dog digestive issues, therefore, is taking a look at what they’re being fed.

Raw food diet scientific research

It doesn’t matter whether we’re talking about humans or dogs—we always turn to the science where we can. And in 2021, a paper was published on a study done with 7,015 dogs (woof) to examine the link between early-life factors like diet and IBD reported later in life. Interestingly, the researchers found that puppies on a raw diet (of uncooked meat, veggies, fruits, and other wholesome ingredients) were associated with a significantly lower risk of developing IBD later in life. Compared to raw-fed puppies, puppies on a kibble diet at the same age were associated with a higher risk of developing IBD later in life. We’ll throw you a bone and make it simple: The earlier we start our pups on a raw diet, the better their digestive health may be in the future.

Benefits of raw diet for dogs

But more importantly, their bellies are happier on a raw diet. And that’s because of a theory researchers call the “Old Friends” hypothesis, which suggests that our pups’ immune system benefits from early-life exposure to environmental elements like microbes, pollens, and molds (which raw food helps to do). A raw diet helps “educate” our dogs’ immune systems to help foster a healthier microbiome for years to come. Just like our own gut microbiome plays a vital role in overall health—the canine microbiome similarly protects against pathogens and supports immunity.

The real raw benefits

We don’t always get clear signals about our pup’s well-being, but we can stay proactive by choosing a raw food diet (as early as possible) for digestive health. After all, pet parents have reported the real digestive benefits of a raw diet, starting with smaller and firmer No. 2s. But the benefits extend beyond digestion, too, like increased energy levels, improved skin and coat, weight management, and of course, more mealtime excitement over the Instinct Raw Frozen Bites in beef, chicken, or lamb flavor!

Digestion woes can show up in many different forms—for humans and our pet pals alike. No matter the species, getting more intentional with diet is always a step in the right direction. Like us, our dogs deserve what’s real: real food and real benefits. One easy scoop of Instinct Raw at a time!

Originally published on MindBodyGreen

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