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Help, my dog is farting and smelly

Foto van de billen van een shiba

You knew already that your dog does not smell of rose petals and baby shampoo. That occasional breeze is part of healthy intestinal function. But what if the dog leaves an extremely large number of farts, or if they smell really bad? Find out more in this blog.

Why does your dog fart?

Farts are intestinal gases that leave the body. So air in other words. But how does that air get into your dog’s intestines? Two reasons:

1. Your dog has swallowed air, for example when eating. These farts do not usually have a strong odour.

2. Your dog cannot digest certain nutrients. As a result, the bacteria in its large intestine have a lot of undigested nutrients to process. In the process, they produce sulphur and methane. These gases determine the smell of your dog’s farts.

How do you ensure that your dog farts less?

Eating more slowly does not only help against flatulence, it is also healthier for your dog. That is easy to do, for example with a slow feeder. The obstacles in this bowl ensure that your dog cannot gulp the food down anymore. It also stimulates your dog’s brain and your dog enjoys its meal for longer.

Did you know? Boxers, bulldogs and pugs fart more than other breeds. This is because when they eat, they breathe through their mouths and swallow more air.

How do you make your dog’s farts stink less?

If your dog’s farts smell, it means that the bacteria in its large intestine are getting too much food. This is either because too much undigested food enters the large intestine or the food stays there too long . To reduce farting, choose a dog food that is quick and easy to digest.

The best dog food against flatulence

You are of course already aware that you should not feed your dog table scraps. But did you know that there is a big difference between the different types of dog food? Pellets can remain in your dog’s system for up to 48 hours. This gives intestinal bacteria plenty of time to produce foul-smelling gases.

In addition, kibble and wet food often contain cheap fillers such as grain and cellulose from beet pulp. Cereals mainly contain starch. This is a feast for the bad bacteria in the colon. Too much starch or grain in your dog’s diet can therefore cause flatulence.

Cellulose, on the other hand, cannot be digested. It is not fermented by bacteria, but the extra volume does ensure that other nutrients stay in the gut longer, and so can ferment there for longer. That is why cellulose in your dog’s food also contributes to the formation of gas in his intestines.

With fresh food you give your dog only what he really needs and in the form that its digests the quickest. That means that your dog’s body absorbs almost all nutrients, leaving little for the intestinal bacteria.

In addition, fresh food retains its volume, so there is no need for unnecessary fillers. As a result, digestion is faster and intestinal bacteria have less time to produce gases, so your dog farts less .

Another advantage of fresh food is that you can buy poop bags one size smaller from now on. Because your dog’s body absorbs this food so well and there are no unnecessary fillers in it, he will also produce less stool.

What else can you do?

  • Excerise accelerates internal throughput. This gives the intestinal bacteria less time to produce odours.
  • Give your dog two meals a day. This way, your dog’s digestive system does not have to process large amounts at once and it can absorb more nutrients which means that the amount of undigested nutrients that end up in the large intestine is reduced .
  • Avoid legumes, rye, oats and barley. They contain a special kind of starch that causes acid fermentation  in the intestines. This gives your dog a bloated feeling and intestinal gas. 
  • Observe your dog (and its stool). See how your dog reacts to different types of food. This is different for each dog. Have you noticed that tomatoes make your dog farts badly ? Or does it cause diarrhoea? ? Then give it something else to eat in the future.
  • Does your dog also have itching, skin or coat problems? This may indicate a food allergy or food intolerance. With an elimination diet you find out exactly which nutrient triggers your dog.
  • Change your diet gradually. If you switch to new food from one day to the next, this can confuse your dog’s digestive system. So you need to do it in steps, spread over a period of at least seven days.
  • Have a look in the leaflet. Flatulence can be caused by medication, such as antibiotics. A course of probiotics can help replenish the healthy bacteria in the gut.
  • Worm your dog. Endoparasites can also cause gas. These are parasites in your dog’s intestines. A simple deworming is usually sufficient to kill them.

What if nothing helps?

Farting can be a symptom of a more serious problem, such as an inflammation in your dog’s intestines or liver. Do the complaints persist for more than a week? Make sure you consult a vet.

What if the vet says your dog is in perfect health?

Then there is nothing for it but to love your dear little stinking dog like it is. With its good and bad sides – and by that we mean especially its rear end 😉

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