An itchy dog is stressful for both your dog and for you and allergies in general that cause skin itching is one of the top reasons you will visit your vet. So many people are seeking answers to help reduce or stop the itching associated with allergy particularly environmental allergy and it can be difficult to treat in some dogs. Today I want to share with you the best probiotics to help stop and calm down that itching pattern so stay tuned to learn more.
Studies have shown some good benefits using probiotics with dog that have itching and allergy in general and while there is no magic pill, they can certainly have positive benefits with your dog. But there are numerous strains of probiotics available which can get confusing and not all of them are going to help. So which ones do we use?? One of the best strains to consider for any allergy prone dog but especially that atopic dermatitis is lactobacillus rhamnosus. There have been animal (and also human( studies carried out using this strain to see what benefit it has on itching and the results have been positive. When given to dogs under in the first 6 months of life (as they are building their gut flora up) it was shown to reduce what are known as allergen specific IGE antibodies responsible for causing those allergy symptoms. By reducing these antibodies the study showed that this actually prevented in part the development of that atopic dermatitis. The same dogs were studied 3 years later even after having stopped taking the rhamnosus probiotic and were found to still have low IGE antibodies in their system so there is both short and long term benefit in this probiotic. And actually another interesting thing to note is that dogs with lower levels of this particular good bacteria have higher levels of anxiety which in turn can make allergies worse. It’s often referred to as LGG an typically it is found in combination with other probiotics. Probiotics are usually measured in CFU’s 9colony forming units) so work on a dose of approximately 1 billion per 5kg bodyweight. So a 20kg dog might need 4 billion CFU’s. Now make sure that you start slowly and build up so go under the recommended dose for the first week and slowly build up, adding into your dogs food (and if they are currently on antibiotics give around 2 hours away from that antibiotic.)