According to the results of a recent survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), the amount that people spend on their pets has quadrupled from 1994 to 2016. In 2015, pet owners spent almost $16 million dollars in veterinary care alone.
This is due in part to the trend of humans bonding more with their pets and treating them more like a member of the family who has the same needs, concerns, and feelings. Statistics like these are one of the reasons why you should be concerned with what you are feeding your dog and more specifically, how it affects something called their gut health.
What is Gut Health?
In general, a dog’s stomach is a pretty hostile environment. The health of our dogs’ gastrointestinal system is determined by levels and types of bacteria in the digestive tract. As with humans, dogs also release digestive enzymes on demand. This is the process that helps break down food, which in turn releases nutrients that your dog needs to survive. Unlike humans, dogs only have 2 enzymes present in their gut to help extract nutrients from food – protease and lipase. Since a dog is naturally predisposed to having a prey-like diet, (most likely found in the wild) the enzymes are most effective when they are fed a diet as close to this as possible.
However, most pet food (kibble, dry dog food) is plant-based with ingredients such as corn, rice, and soy. When dogs are fed highly processed foods, the gut becomes damaged and the enzymes present in your dog’s stomach are unable to efficiently digest and extract the nutrients necessary to optimize your dog’s health. The proteins in commercial pet foods are not only difficult to digest, they are also filled with additives and preservatives that allow bad bacteria to grow in the gut. This leads to issues such as poor skin, weakened immune system, and reduced energy. Gut health literally affects your dog’s entire body. Even things that seem unrelated to digestive issues – skin allergies, joint pain, heart disease and several other ailments – are caused by poor gut health.
Improving Your Dog’s Immune System With A Better Diet
If your dog is getting the right type of nutrition, they are better equipped to fight off disease meaning fewer visits to the vet and better quality of life overall. An improved gut health ecosystem, through a better diet, can also help to break the “antibiotic cycle”. There are naturally occurring microbes in a dog’s gut that create a balance of good and bad bacteria. The good bacteria help keep the digestive system regulated and the dog in an overall healthier state.
When a veterinarian prescribes antibiotics, this actually disrupts the balance and kills the bad AND the good bacteria – the kind that your dog needs in their gut – and this alteration can cause diarrhea conditions. If the diversity of microbes in the gut are kept balanced by the proper diet, this could actually be more effective in disease management than drug treatment. Ask any dog owner – less diarrhea is a very good thing.
It may not seem as if efficient digestion and a strong immune system are closely related. However, they are inextricably linked and rely heavily upon the health of each other. The gastrointestinal system is largely responsible for the critical functions of the body’s digestive and immune systems. For example, if a dog is receiving poor nutrition and is unable to properly extract nutrients from that food, this will lead to low energy. During a compromised digestive condition, digestion requires more energy and more enzymes. In turn, the immune system becomes weakened due to the increased demand for digestive enzymes and yet another cycle begins.
Think of the last time you went through a phase when you didn’t get enough sleep, worked too much and ate too much junk food. This probably left you feeling run-down and more susceptible to illness. Then if you began eating healthier meals and getting more sleep, your energy went up and you felt much better. The same thing is true for our pets – proper nutrition can help your dog live a longer and healthier life with less disease and more energy.
Help Your Dog Thrive
Providing all of these amazing benefits to your dog – increased energy, stronger immunity and more – can be as easy as adding Origins to your dog’s food. Rogue Pet Science’s Origins Canine Supplement is a scientifically formulated whole food supplement that optimizes your dog’s gut health by providing a balance of nutrients that is species-appropriate, nutrient-rich and corrects gut pH to create the ideal digestive environment.
Rogue’s mission is to provide an affordable, organic and high-quality product that optimizes your dog’s health and simplifies your life. Origins costs $0.40 or less per serving and packs 17 grams of whole fish protein, 20 amino acids, 10 minerals and 3 vitamins into each ¼ cup. It is also made in an Organic certified facility with multiple ISO certifications to allow 100% traceability of its ingredients. When you buy Rogue Pet Science’s Origins Canine Supplement, you can be assured that you are getting the best product at the best price possible that actually does what it says it’s going to do – help you give your dog the life they deserve.
Nathan Dewsbury, (part-time scientist and full-time field-specialist) is founder and CEO of Rogue Pet Science. He’s spent 15 years working in the global animal health markets, feed manufacturing, and is passionate about animal nutrition education. Nathan is a two-time Texas A&M graduate, an accomplished dog trainer, and a published author in canine genetics. When he’s not working he can be found exploring the outdoors with his wife Stacy and their son Wyatt where he enjoys spending time training dogs to work livestock.