A dog is a part of a family, and that means that their health is just as important as yours. From ensuring that any aches and pains are sorted out, to covering their basic healthcare needs, caring for a dog is about much more than feeding and watering.
A top class dog owner knows about how a dog’s body works, to enable them to look after their furry friend as best they can. One area which needs extra attention is their stomach.
In order for your dog to get all the nutrients they need from their diet, you need to know about something called digestive enzymes.
It’s actually much simpler than it sounds.
- 1 What Are Digestive Enzymes For Dogs?
- 2 Digestive Enzyme Supplements For Dogs
- 3 The 7 Best Digestive Enzymes For Dogs
- 3.1 NaturVet Digestive Enzymes
- 3.2 PetVitality Pro 4 Big CFUs Chewable
- 3.3 Animal Essentials AS-4000040-2
- 3.4 Pet Balance Systemic 364
- 3.5 NaturVet All-in-One
- 3.6 In Clover Fresh
- 3.7 Wholistic Pet Organics Digest-All
- 4 To Sum up
What Are Digestive Enzymes For Dogs?
As with a human, dogs can experience digestive problems too. You’ll be able to notice the symptoms, such as bad breath, vomiting, being ‘off’ their food, gas, bloating, and generally acting quite lethargic.
These are all signs that your dog is experiencing a few issues with their stomach, and it could easily be down to something they’ve eaten, a bug, or it could be down to the fact that they’re not in the best of gut health.
You will know as a human, if you have stomach ache or you’re feeling gassy or bloated, you don’t feel wondering in yourself either. The same goes for dogs.
Of course, you should always get anything you’re not sure of checked out with a vet before you decide what is wrong with your dog yourself, but it could very well be down to a need for digestive enzymes.
Digestive enzymes are taken as a supplement (or found in food) can will help improve digestion and the absorption of nutrients from your dog’s food. As a result, if this is the issue, you’ll notice that their stomach problems go away, and they seem to have more energy, and are back to their normal selves.
Humans have digestive enzymes, just as animals do, and these are extremely small molecules of protein which live in cells within the body. These are vital for many different health-related functions, such as giving energy, detoxifying the body, and basically ensuring the smooth running of our body’s functions.
Digestive enzymes dwell in the stomach and entire digestive system, and they work to intercept the food, break it down, and allow nutrients to be absorbed. They also contribute to the smooth running of the entire digestive system, avoiding or reducing gas, bloating, and other stomach-related issues.
There are four main types of digestive enzymes your dog needs:
Your dog will find digestive enzymes in the food he or she eats, but general environmental factors and overall health can reduce the amount of enzymes received, or cause damage to them. All of this adds up to a poorly functioning digestive system, and hence the symptoms experienced.
Digestive Enzyme Supplements For Dogs
Just as you can find digestive enzyme supplements for humans, you can find them for dogs too, and they come in capsules which you give to your dog. Of course, how well your dog takes these depends upon their overall character! It may be that you have to hide them in their food and let them take them without their knowledge.
However you get your dog to take the supplement, this should help increase the number of useful digestive enzymes in their overall digestive system, and allow them to absorb nutrients from their foods, break down foods effectively, and reduce stomach-issue related symptoms.
The problem comes in deciding which digestive enzyme supplement is best for your dog. You want to be sure that you are giving him or her the best, but it can be hard to do that when there is so much choice on the market. Understanding the right product versus the wrong one can be difficult, and each dog is also different to the next!
For that reason, we’ve found 7 of the best digestive enzymes for dogs, to help make your search easier. Of course, if you have any concerns about your dog’s health, or they have any issues or are on any medications, always have a chat with your vet before you start giving your dog any supplements, of any kind.
The 7 Best Digestive Enzymes For Dogs
NaturVet Digestive Enzymes
NaturVet is a big named brand in the pet supplement world, so you can get a large dose of peace of mind from that. The particular product has digestive enzymes within it as its main selling point, but it also contains probiotics. These work hand in hand to create a very healthy and smooth running digestive system.
Food will be broken down effectively, nutrients absorbed, and the probiotic will help to ensure less gas, bloating, diarrhoea, or constipation, by creating a healthy balance of good versus bad bacteria in your dog’s stomach. Probiotics are also a great source of a particular digestive enzyme your dog needs, called protease. This helps the stomach to absorb proteins and peptides.
If you have cats in your household, this item is also suitable for felines too, which could be a plus point if you don’t want to buy two particular supplement products, for animals with the same digestive problem.
- A popular brand name to give you peace of mind
- Product contains probiotics, to give a complete stomach benefit
- Suitable for cats also
- The product is a powder, which some dogs may not eat as well as chewable tablets
- Due to the brand, the product is a little expensive when purchased over time
PetVitality Pro 4 Big CFUs Chewable
We all know that getting a dog to take any kind of medication can be a drama in itself! They seem to be able too sniff out anything that isn’t their regular food, and usually refuse to take it as a result! This particular product is ideal for fussy dogs because they are chewable, and therefore you can easily disguise them in your dog’s regular food, and there won’t be a change in the way it feels in their mouth. This means they’re much more likely to actually take the supplement and gain the benefits!
This product contains digestive enzymes, but also probiotics once more, and prebiotics. This is beneficial, because probiotics need prebiotics to do their best work. Prebiotics food the probiotics, which are actually beneficial live bacteria.
By having prebiotic content, the probiotics are stronger, and more able to do their job. Of course, the main point is the digestive enzymes, but these are stronger by the presence of the prebiotics, as we mentioned in our last product suggestion.
Containing all the main digestive enzymes your dog needs, this product is a good option for those have found it hard to administer powdered supplements in the past.
- The product comes in chewable tablets, which can be hidden in food easily
- Contains prebiotics, as well as probiotics and digestive enzymes
- Contains a range of digestive enzymes from natural products
- Whilst most dogs will take a chewable supplement, not all will, so this could be an issue for your dog as well as a pro point
- Again, the cost is high over time
Animal Essentials AS-4000040-2
Dogs can have certain dietary requirements, just like humans, and that means finding a supplement which fits in with those particular issues. This product is ideal because it is free of lactose and sugar, making it suitable for dogs who are lactose intolerant and who are on more restrictive diets. We should point out that this particular digestive enzyme isn’t suitable for long-term use because it contains calcium sulphate, which shouldn’t be used for a long time. It can however be used to help with any bouts of digestive issues, and should right the problem quite effectively.
Again, this product can be used for both dogs and cats, which cuts down on costs if you have both in your household, and it is in a powder form, which you can sprinkle into food.
- Lactose and sugar free product, which is ideal for dogs with certain dietary requirements
- Can be used for both cats and dogs
- A powder supplement to sprinkle into food
- Not all dogs will eat a supplement in powder form
- This product is isn’t suitable for long term use, due to the presence of calcium sulphate
Pet Balance Systemic 364
This digestive enzyme for dogs is a great choice because it contains 11 different digestive and systemic enzymes, all of which are plant-based, so they’re completely natural. Again, you can use this product on cats, and it doesn’t matter about the age of your dog, as it is suitable for any age.
Pet Balance System is a powdered form of digestive enzyme, and is best added to wet dog food, as it will absorb quite quickly. It also contains an anti-inflammatory ingredient, natural once more, called Bromelain. For those dogs with allergies, this product is wheat-free, egg-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and doesn’t contain anything artificial, so it is extremely natural and ideal for those with sensitivities to certain ingredients.
- Contains 11 digestive and systemic enzymes for an all rounder product
- Enzymes are plant based, so they are al natural, with nothing artificial added in
- Can be used on dogs of any age
- Contains Bromelain, an anti-inflammatory, so it is ideal for joint protection
- Wheat, egg, dairy, and soy free
- Contains systemic enzymes as well as digestive ones, and it could be that your dog doesn’t really require these, as they have enough in their diet – speak to your vet to ensure this product isn’t a little ‘too much’ for your dog
This is another NaturVet product of the same range, and equally as effective. The ‘all in one’ tag is quite effective, because it means you only need to give your dog one supplement for a range of different issues, and cuts down on products they need to digest. This supplement contains digestive enzymes, probiotics, vitamins and minerals, for overall health and wellbeing. There is also omega 3 and 6 as ingredients, and glucosamine, which is ideal for joint health.
In terms of digestive enzymes, the product contains four particular types, and it comes in the form of a soft, chewable supplement, so you can easily give them as a treat, without their knowledge, or hide them in their food.
- Big named brand for peace of mind
- An all in one product, which contains vitamins as well, so no need to give your dog several supplements
- Ideal for joint health, so good for middle aged to older dogs
- Chewable supplement which is relatively easy to give to your dog
Again, your dog might already be getting enough vitamins in their diet, so check with your vet before giving an all in one supplement product
In Clover Fresh
This digestive enzyme is a great, basic product which does what it says on the packaging. It contains four particular digestive enzymes which are all plant based, and it doesn’t contain anything artificial or animal protein based.
If your dog has in the past experienced issues with their skin, and it was diagnosed to be due to too much protein contained within their diet, this supplement shouldn’t cause any issues, because it is all plant based and not associated with animal proteins.
Ideal for any age of dog, most users found the greatest benefit for younger dogs and puppies, so that is something to think about when choosing your supplement versus the others on our list, however you should always ensure that products state they are safe for puppies first.
- Contains four digestive enzymes for high effectiveness
- Plant based ingredients, with nothing artificial added in
- Ideal for dogs who have had issues with too much protein in their diet in the past
- Can be used for dogs of any age
- Does state that a puppy can use this product, but you should always check as products should actually say ‘safe for puppies’ on the packaging
Wholistic Pet Organics Digest-All
You can choose your pack size with this product, which may help you save money if you find it useful for your dog’s overall digestive health. You can opt for a 2oz pack of a 4oz pack. The product has many enzymes and probiotics contained within it and they’re all natural, so no worries about additives and extras.
If your dog has any dietary requirements, this product is free of wheat, corn, soy, dairy, and cheese, so it is an ideal option for those who do have other sensitivities, other than needing a boost of digestive enzymes. This is also a good priced product, especially for those on a budget.
- Available in two pack sizes, which is useful for saving money over the long term
- Contains all natural products, with nothing artificial added in
- Free of wheat, soy, dairy, and cheese
- Competitively priced for those on a budget
- Some users state that the 2oz bottle is too small, but the 4oz bottle is too large for first time use!
To Sum up
Looking after your god’s overall health and wellbeing is an arduous task sometimes, but it is one which is vital. Your dog is part of your family, as we mentioned at the start, and that means looking after your furry companion just as well as anyone else within your brood!
Of course, always shop around to find the best product for your dog’s digestion and be sure to read reviews before making your final choice. You should also shop around in terms of price, as there is little regulation in terms of costing from place to place.
If you are at all concerned about your dog’s digestion, or any other part of their health and wellbeing, remember to have a chat with your vet. If your dog has any health issues, or they’re taking any other medications, it’s also a must to have a chat with your vet before you start them on any digestive enzyme supplements. Whilst these supplements are suitable for the majority of dogs, there may be the odd anomaly, and it’s worth discussing this ahead of time, to avoid any upsets or problems along the way.
Just like humans, dogs have issues with their stomachs and digestive systems too. Feeling bloated, gassy, and having the odd stomach ache due to diet isn’t fun for an adult or child, so it’s certainly not going to be fun for a dog, who can’t tell you in words how they’re feeling. By knowing about digestive enzymes and how they can benefit your furry friend, you can help reduce the pain and discomfort, and help them get back to their old, lovable selves!