If your dog is experiencing gastrointestinal problems, you may be looking for a homemade dog food recipe that can help. Many different recipes are available, but some of the most effective include boiled chicken, rice, and pumpkin.
Many things can cause digestive issues for dogs, and while some may pass within a day or two, other issues can result in gastrointestinal problems. If your dog has a sensitive stomach, a few recipes and probiotic reviews will help you.
You can also add probiotics and other supplements to your dog’s food to help improve their digestive health. This article will discuss the best homemade dog food recipes and five of the best probiotics to help with common gastrointestinal issues in dogs.
Common gastrointestinal issues
Infections of the digestive system in dogs are common. Ingestion of contaminated food, water, or (unfortunately) feces is the most common way dogs receive an infection in their digestive tract. The three most common infectious culprits are the following:
- Bacterial Infections – Ingesting bacteria can stick to and irritate the inside of the digestive tract. This can cause inflammation, diarrhea, and vomiting. Vets can prescribe antibiotics for bacterial gastrointestinal infections.
- Parasitic Infections – Parasites that live in the digestive tract can cause inflammation, diarrhea, and vomiting. Some common parasites include Giardia, Cryptosporidium, Toxoplasma gondii, and roundworms. Seeing white spots in your dog’s feces is typically a sign of parasites.
- Viral Infections – Viruses can cause inflammation, diarrhea, and vomiting. The most common viruses that infect the digestive tract are the parvovirus, coronavirus, and adenovirus. These cannot be cured using antibiotics, and instead, you should manage your dogs’ symptoms and provide enough fluids.
There are many other causes of gastrointestinal issues in dogs, including:
- Food allergies or intolerance
- Chemicals (such as cleaners or pesticides) ingested
- Foreign objects swallowed
- Blockages in the intestines caused by tumors, scar tissue, or masses
- Hormonal imbalances (such as Cushing’s disease)
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Stress or anxiety
- pH imbalance
Homemade Dog Food Recipe for Gastrointestinal Problems
Supplements and the correct diet are essential for pH health issues and related gastrointestinal problems. The more biologically appropriate the diet you feed, the better chances your pup will overcome pH imbalances and gastrointestinal issues.
Prescription diets that are available from your veterinarian can be very helpful in managing these conditions, but if you wish to make your dog’s food at home, there are a few effective recipes.
When considering a homemade diet for your pup, it is essential to remember that some recipes are more balanced than others. For example, a diet high in carbohydrates and low in animal protein can lead to health problems over time. The following recipes are all based on a diet that is high in animal protein, moderate in carbohydrates, and low in fat:
Chicken & white rice pumpkin recipe for dogs with diarrhea
- 2 cups boiled white rice
- 3 cups cooked chicken, chopped
- 2 cups chopped veggies (carrots, peas, green beans, etc.)
- One tablespoon of pumpkin puree per serving
Mix all ingredients together and serve. This recipe is bland but will help soothe your dog’s digestive system. You can also try adding probiotics to the mixture to help improve digestion. You should continue to feed your pup a bland diet until his stools return to normal in a few days. During this time, you can slowly increase the amount of food you feed.
Beef recipe with rice and veggies for dogs with diarrhea
- 1.5 cups white rice
- 2.5 pounds of ground beef
- 1/2 cup butternut squash
- 1/2 cup diced carrots
- 1/2 cup frozen green peas
- 2 cups bone broth
- 2 cups water
Cooking The Homemade Dog Food
Cook beef in a large skillet over medium heat until browned. Add rice, butternut squash, carrots, green peas, bone broth, and water to the skillet and stir to combine. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the rice is cooked through. Serve warm. This recipe is high in protein and nutrients and will help to improve your dog’s digestion. You can also try adding probiotics to the mixture to help improve digestion. You can refrigerate the leftovers and serve them later.
Prescription dog food
If your dog is suffering from a more serious gastrointestinal issue, your veterinarian may prescribe a specific prescription dog food. This food will help improve the dog’s digestion and reduce symptoms.
Rooibos tea for gastrointestinal issues in dogs
Research has demonstrated that rooibos tea can effectively manage gastrointestinal issues in dogs. Rooibos tea is a herbal tea made from the leaves of the rooibos bush, which is native to South Africa. The tea is high in antioxidants, and it is effective in treating a variety of conditions, including diarrhea, vomiting, and allergies.
The best way to give your dog rooibos tea is to brew a strong batch and then let it cool. You can then pour the cooled tea into a water dish or feed it to your dog directly from a spoon. If your pup does not like the taste of rooibos tea, you can mix it with his food or add a little honey to sweeten it.
Rooibos tea is a safe and natural way to help manage gastrointestinal issues in dogs, and it can be given as often as needed.
When it comes to managing pH imbalances and gastrointestinal problems in dogs, diet and supplements are essential, but so is stress management. Stressed dogs are more likely to develop gastrointestinal issues, so find ways to relax and de-stress your pup. Some methods that can be effective include massage, aromatherapy, and Bach flower essences.
Best Five Probiotics for Dogs With Gastrointestinal Issues
Many options are available if you are looking for a probiotic supplement to give your dog. However, not all probiotics are created equal, and some probiotics are better than others for dogs. The five best probiotics for dogs are:
- Lactobacillus acidophilus
- Bifidobacterium animalis
- Lactobacillus reuteri
- Saccharomyces boulardii
- Bacillus coagulans
Each of these probiotics is beneficial for dogs, and they can help restore balance to the gut flora, treat diarrhea and vomiting, and promote overall health. Here’s the takeaway:
If you are looking for a probiotic supplement to give your dog, any of these five products would be a good choice. They all contain different strains of probiotics, so they can help to restore balance to the gut flora and treat diarrhea and vomiting.
Symptoms of digestive system infections in dogs can vary depending on the cause but often include vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite. In severe cases, dehydration and collapse can occur. If you suspect your dog has an infection in his digestive tract, please contact your veterinarian for diagnosis and treatment.
If your pup is suffering from a gastrointestinal infection, you should also avoid feeding them any processed or high-fat foods, as these can aggravate the problem. Consult with your veterinarian for a complete list of foods to avoid.
In a rush? Here are the top picks for supplements if your dog has gastrointestinal issues.
Probios Vet Plus Dispersible Digestive Powder, 240gm, is intended for dogs’ dietary management with diarrhea and contains prebiotics and probiotics to help re-establish a healthy gut flora.
Probios is a multi-species dispersible powder that’s easy to feed and may be beneficial in promoting a healthy digestive system. Probios is the world’s most widely used, researched, and recognized brand of direct-fed microbials (DFMs). It contains gut-friendly bacteria of proven efficacy, capable of remaining viable during performance. It’s also safe and effective and is backed up by more than 100 individual studies at universities and under field conditions. This is also an excellent product for horses.
- Contains a source of live (viable), naturally occurring microorganisms. Provides more than 10 Million Colony Forming Units (CFU)
- Safe & effective with proven efficacy
- It helps promote a healthy digestive system
- Recommended for all age dogs & puppies
- Manufactured in an infant food-grade facility (SQF Level 3 Edition 9)
- A US product
- Over 2,000 positive reviews
Veterinary Science Laboratories Probiotic Capsules is a probiotic supplement that helps to support gastrointestinal health in dogs. Each capsule is guaranteed to contain 5 billion microorganisms per capsule with eight different strains from non-dairy sources, which can help to restore balance to the gut flora and treat diarrhea and vomiting. It’s also easy to administer, as dogs only need one capsule per day if under 40 lbs. This product features over 1,700 positive reviews.
- Veterinarian formulated
- Includes both prebiotics & probiotics
- Easy to feed
- Normalizes bowel function
- Non-dairy formula
- Crafted with Fructooligosaccharides(FOS) or prebiotics- to support digestive tract health
- Made in the US
Pet Naturals of Vermont Probiotics for Dogs is a probiotic supplement that helps to support gastrointestinal health in dogs. It supports a gut environment where probiotic cultures and colonies can thrive. This product ensures a stable 100 million Bacillus coagulans to the gut.
Pet Naturals features seven different strains of probiotics, which can help to restore balance to the gut flora and treat diarrhea and vomiting. It’s also easy to administer, as dogs only need one chewable tablet per day. This product has over 4,600 positive reviews.
- GanedenBC30, a patented probiotic strain that contains 100 million CFUs of Bacillus coagulans
- Prebiotics & probiotics
- Includes live cultures & prebiotic fiber
- Free of corn, wheat, & artificial ingredients.
- 160 duck flavored chewable
- Over 4,600 positive reviews
- Made in the US
- Suitable for all life stages
Purina Veterinary Diets FortiFlora Canine Probiotic Supplement is a probiotic supplement that helps to support gastrointestinal health in dogs.
This is a probiotic recommended by veterinarians (Kynetec, Probiotic Recommendation Study, March 2019). It contains one billion colony-forming units of live probiotics per packet, which can help to restore balance to the gut flora and treat diarrhea and vomiting. It’s also easy to administer, as dogs only need one packet per day. This product has over 26,300 positive reviews.
- Three size options
- 30 count box
- Suitable for all life stages
- Features antioxidants that also support immune health.
- Works for the dietary management of puppies & adult dogs with diarrhea
- A Purina product
- Over 26,300 positive reviews
Zesty Paws Probiotic for Dogs is a clinically studied probiotic made with DE111, a patented and highly effective strain of bacteria that has been shown to support gut flora, digestion, occasional diarrhea, and bowel health in dogs.
Each chewable soft tablet contains 2.5 billion CFU (colony forming units) of live, active bacteria, which helps to re-establish the natural balance of good and bad bacteria in your dog’s gut, promoting overall digestive health. Zesty Paws Probiotic for Dogs is also gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, and grain-free, making it a safe and healthy choice for dogs with food sensitivities. For best results, give your dog one chewable soft tablet per day. This product features over 20,400 positive reviews.
- Soft chews
- Six-strain probiotic powder blend. with live bacteria
- Pumpkin flavor
- The base of pumpkin & papaya (sources of enzymes)
- Over 20,400 positive reviews
- Suitable for all life stages
Digestive problems in dogs
Although gastrointestinal problems are common in dogs, they can be hard to diagnose without the help of your veterinarian and testing to diagnose problem. Veterinarians use several popular tests to test for GI diseases.
Here are a few some of the tests that your vet might use
Microscopic fecal examination
This test is inexpensive and straightforward, and one of the most popular tests used to look for parasite eggs in your dog’s stool. Dogs that are positive for parasites will usually be treated with a dewormer. You’ll need to bring a fecal sample less than 48 hours old to your vet for this test.
This test is a more sensitive test that can detect smaller amounts of antigen in a stool sample. Antigens are proteins found on the surface of viruses, bacteria, or other organisms. This test is used to look for specific infections like Giardia and Campylobacter.
This test measures the amount of IgA in your dog’s blood. IgA is an antibody found in high levels in the mucous membranes of the gastrointestinal tract. This test can help diagnose inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), pancreatitis, and intestinal infections.
Amylase and lipase testing
Amylase and lipase are two enzymes that are released when the pancreas is damaged. Elevated levels of these enzymes can be indicative of pancreatitis. These are inexpensive tests and are often included in standard blood profiles.
The pancreatic lipase test (PLI) is a new type of test that measures the amount of lipase enzyme. This test can be used to check for pancreatic enzyme insufficiency and pancreatitis. If your pup is vomiting a lot or prone to bouts of diarrhea, this may be the test of choice. Dogs that are lethargic and suffer from a lack of appetite may also do well with this test.
TLI/ cobalamin/folate test
This test is used to check for deficiencies in cobalamin (vitamin B12) and folate. Cobalamin is essential for normal digestion and absorption of food. Folate is necessary for the production of red blood cells. This test is most often used to diagnose exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI). This is a good test that shows bacterial overgrowth, which usually coincides with chronic GI disease in dogs.
TLI (trypsin-like immunoreactivity) tests for the presence of trypsin in the stool. Trypsin is an enzyme that’s released when the pancreas is damaged. This test is used to help diagnose pancreatitis, EPI, and other pancreatic diseases. For example, if your pup has exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI), he will usually lose weight and have chronic diarrhea. However, German Shepherds often suffer from this condition more than other breeds.
This test is used to look for an increase in IgA antibodies in your dog’s blood. IgA are antibodies found in a dog’s saliva and tears and are increased when infection or inflammation is present in the intestines.
This more invasive test can diagnose conditions like inflammatory bowel disease, intestinal cancer, and other minor intestine diseases. In addition, a small piece of tissue is removed from the intestinal wall and examined under a microscope.
CT scan or MRI
These tests are used to diagnose tumors, hernias, and other conditions in the abdomen. They are more expensive tests and are not typically used to diagnose gastrointestinal issues in dogs.
This test is used to diagnose inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), pancreatitis, and intestinal cancer. This is a procedure in which a small, flexible tube with a light and camera on the end is inserted down the throat to examine the esophagus, stomach, and intestines lining. It’s a more invasive test that looks at your dog’s gastrointestinal tract inside.
Several blood tests can be used to help diagnose gastrointestinal problems in dogs. These tests include a serum IgA test, a fecal ELISA test, and a C-reactive protein test. In addition, a blood test can help your veterinarian determine if an infection or other problem is causing your dog’s GI issues.
Rectal biopsy: A test involves taking a small tissue sample from the rectum to examine for abnormalities.
Fecal analysis: A test that looks at the content of your dog’s feces for signs of infection, parasites, or other problems.
There are many different causes of gastrointestinal problems in dogs, but some of the most common ones include:
- Food allergies or sensitivities
- Infections (bacterial, viral, or parasitic)
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Celiac disease
- Sensitivity to additives in dog food
Each of these conditions has different causes, symptoms, and treatments. If you are concerned that your dog may be experiencing a gastrointestinal problem, it is best to take them to the veterinarian for testing.
In the meantime, you can try feeding them a homemade diet high in protein and low in fiber. You can also add probiotics and other supplements to their food to help improve their digestive health. For example, if your furbaby is experiencing any of the following symptoms, they may have a gastrointestinal problem:
- Abdominal pain
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Fouls smelling stool
The best way to treat gastrointestinal problems in dogs is to identify the cause and treat it accordingly. For example, suppose your veterinarian can’t determine the cause of your dog’s GI issues. In that case, they may recommend a diet change or a course of antibiotics or other medications to help treat the problem.
Alternative Ways To Treat Your Dog With Gastrointestinal Issues
One is to feed them smaller meals more often throughout the day instead of one large meal. Another is to choose a homemade dog food recipe that is easy to digest. Boiled chicken, rice, and pumpkin are good options.
Before adding nutritional supplements, you should reach out to your vet to understand what should be in your dog’s bowl and whether the nutrients you’re feeding will exceed the daily recommended daily amounts. You should also check whether some supplements are included in your dog’s food, like omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
There are numerous reasons to start with probiotics supplementation; however, gastrointestinal problems rank high on the list. Probiotics are one of the most effective ways to treat and prevent GI issues in dogs. Probiotics are microorganisms that line the gut and support digestive health. They can be beneficial for both young and old dogs and those who are ill or recovering from surgery.
There are many different probiotics on the market, so it can be challenging to choose the right one. For example, when selecting a probiotic for your dog, you should look for a product containing multiple bacteria strains. You should also make sure that the probiotic is specifically designed for dogs. Once you’ve chosen a probiotic, follow the dosage instructions on the label.
Before purchasing supplements for your furbaby, always look for the NASC Quality Seal that shows that the product comes from a responsible manufacturer. Never give human supplements to pets because pets are different from ours, so you’ll need to opt for all accessories specifically formulated for pets and understand how to administer them correctly under the guidance of your veterinarian.
In addition, THE NASC quality standards ensure that a pet supplement has passed a comprehensive facility audit and maintains ongoing compliance with NASC rigorous standards.
Camel milk is low in lactate and features a different type of casein than cow’s milk. This makes it a good option for lactose intolerant dogs or dogs that have trouble digesting dairy products. You can find camel milk at most health food stores.
When you’re trying to determine what’s wrong with your pup, you may not consider pH imbalances that can also impact your dog’s health and are linked to a variety of conditions, including digestive issues like the following:
Dogs with urinary pH imbalances may have increased thirst and increased urinary issues, hematuria, or inappropriate urination. Hematoligicval pH imbalances usually come from metabolic diseases whose common symptoms include gastrointestinal problems. These include the following:
- Chronic vomiting
- Weight loss
- Loss of coat health & sheen
If your pup is experiencing any of the above signs or symptoms, it is essential to have his pH levels checked by a veterinarian. Once the underlying cause of the pH imbalance has been identified, your vet can help you create a treatment plan that includes changes in diet and supplements as necessary.
The best way to prevent pH imbalances
When your dog is faced with a gastric pH imbalance, this may include illnesses linked to gastric pH imbalance. For example, a healthy digestive pH in dogs is 1-2 during digestion and 4-5 when resting. That said, your veterinarian should test your dog to check for a pH imbalance in the gut and other imbalances in the body.
The most common illnesses will include the following:
- Systemic yeast infections
- Dysbiosis (leaky gut)
- Food intolerances
- Irritable bowel-like symptoms
FAQ Gastrointestinal issues in dogs
What are some common gastrointestinal issues in dogs?
Some common gastrointestinal issues in dogs include gastritis, pancreatitis, and intestinal parasites.
What are the symptoms of gastrointestinal issues in dogs?
The symptoms of gastrointestinal issues in dogs can vary depending on the specific issue but may include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and weight loss.
How are gastrointestinal issues in dogs treated?
The treatment for gastrointestinal issues in dogs will depend on the specific issue but may include antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medications, and dietary changes.
Can gastrointestinal issues in dogs be prevented?
Gastrointestinal issues in dogs can sometimes be prevented by feeding a high-quality diet, avoiding table scraps and other junk food, and keeping the dog’s environment clean.
How do probiotics help with gastrointestinal in dogs?
Probiotics help dogs with gastrointestinal issues by restoring the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut. This can help to improve digestion and reduce symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting.
What homemade recipes can I give my dog with diarrhea?
There are a few homemade recipes that can be helpful for dogs with diarrhea. One is a mixture of boiled rice, chicken, and vegetables. You can also give your dog probiotic supplements to help restore the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut. As usual, visit your veterinarian for professional advice.
Conclusion For Best Homemade Dog Food for Gastrointestinal Problems
As animal lovers, we want the best for our pets, including keeping their digestive systems healthy. You can help your furbaby stay healthy and happy by following these tips.
There are several ways to help improve your dog’s digestive health, including feeding them boiled chicken or fish, brown rice, and steamed vegetables. You can also add probiotics to their food to help speed up the healing process.
One way to feed them smaller meals more often throughout the day instead of one large meal is to choose a homemade dog food recipe that is easy to digest. Gastrointestinal issues in dogs can be caused by several things, including infections, parasites, and viruses.
If your dog is experiencing any symptoms of gastrointestinal distress, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or loss of appetite, make an appointment with your veterinarian if it lasts for more than two days. Treatment will vary depending on the cause of the issue, but your veterinarian will be able to help you get your dog back to feeling like its old self.
Want to learn how to improve your dog’s gastrointestinal issues? Check out the video below:
Dr. Sabrina Kong graduated from the Royal Veterinary College in England in 2016 and has been working at a small animal clinic in Northern California since then. She grew up in the Bay Area and got her bachelor’s degree from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She also became a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner through a program at the University of Tennessee.
When she isn’t in the clinic taking care of her four-legged patients, she enjoys traveling and trying new foods with her friends and her three-legged dog, Apollo. She adopted Apollo from her clinic when he was a puppy with numerous health issues. Dr. Kong truly cares about taking care of animals.