Some dogs can eat just about anything without getting sick, including things we wish they wouldn’t gobble up. But other dogs have highly sensitive stomachs and are prone to digestive problems, even when they’re eating what seems like nutritious foods.
If your pup falls into the latter category, it can be stressful to see them in discomfort and not get all the nutrients they need.
Symptoms of Sensitive Stomach in Dogs
Good digestive health is essential for our dogs to live happy, healthy lives! On average, it takes them between 6 and 8 hours to fully digest their food. During the majority of that time (4-6 hours) your dog’s food is in their stomach.
Therefore, it only makes sense that we’d want our pups to have strong, healthy stomachs.
But just like humans, the digestive patterns of each dog can be unique. Knowing what’s normal for your individual dog is a good way to determine whether your pup has digestive problems.
So how can you tell if your dog has the occasional upset tummy or an overall sensitive stomach? Notice the following symptoms of a sensitive stomach:
- Intermittent loose stools
- Ongoing diarrhea
- Random, occasional vomiting
- Excessive gas
- Audible tummy sounds
- Loss of appetite
- Eating grass
- Excessive lip-licking, or air licking
- Pacing after eating
If your dog experiences these symptoms frequently, then it’s a good indicator they have a sensitive stomach and will need additional care to soothe their tummy.
What Causes Sensitive Stomachs in Dogs?
Our dogs’ digestive systems play a massive role in ensuring all the key nutrients are absorbed from their food. So it’s essential to take note when something is off with your pup’s gut.
Your veterinarian can help you get to the root cause of your dog’s sensitive stomach. They may use blood tests to help identify the cause of your dog’s GI distress.
Sensitive stomachs are commonly caused by:
- Food sensitivity*
- Infections from parasites or bacteria
*Interestingly, food sensitivity symptoms can also show up in your dog’s skin as rashes, redness, and even fur loss.
Why Gut Health Is So Important For Dogs
The stomach is only one stop along the journey through your dog’s digestive tract. So if your pup has a sensitive stomach, it could prevent them from getting all the nutrients they need from their food.
Good nutrition supports healthy growth, active living, and a strong immune system. And addressing signs of a sensitive stomach early on can be effective at preventing more serious digestive problems such as these:
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Colitis – Inflammation of the large intestine (colon)
- Dysbiosis (leaky gut) – Weakening of the intestinal barrier that filters nutrients to the bloodstream
The Best Supplements for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
A proper diet goes a long way in supporting dogs with sensitive stomachs.
Pawsomely Healthy’s friend, and Canine Nutritionist, Hannah Zulueta is a strong advocate for addressing our dogs’ digestive needs through healthy, natural foods. In fact, check out her guest post here, where she explains how nutrition can affect dogs with allergies.
In regards to nutrition, your veterinarian can also recommend easy-to-digest food that will help soothe your dog’s tummy.
There are also a host of natural supplements that support dogs with sensitive stomachs. At Pawsomely Healthy, we’ve formulated some of our supplements to include the following:
Many of us have used ginger root to treat our own digestive problems. As it turns out the same properties that are good for us are good for our dogs too!
The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can help soothe your pup’s nausea. It can also help prevent and expel excess gas from your dog’s digestive tract. It also helps prevent gas and bloat by stimulating stomach movement and accelerating stomach emptying.
We’ve formulated our Stay Calm supplement with just the right amount of ginger to support dogs with sensitive stomachs. It’s especially helpful for dogs who experience travel anxiety due to motion sickness.
Aquamin™ is a natural multi-mineral made from a particular species of red algae found off the coast of Iceland. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help calm your dog’s digestive tract.
The Growing Puppy life-stage supplement contains Aquamin as digestion issues are common among puppies. It can also be found in the Super Senior supplement, as an added benefit for older dogs who need digestive support.
Also known as Boswellia, this powerful, yet safe, ingredient has impressive anti-inflammatory properties to support your dog’s sensitive stomach. A study recently revealed that Indian Frankincense can ease digestive tract irritation in humans.
Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, the same benefits can be extended to our dogs. It can reduce the gastrointestinal symptoms that are causing your pup discomfort.
Active Adult Pro is formulated with Indian Frankincense. Dogs who take this supplement will increasingly see improvements to their sensitive stomachs, as this powerful ingredient works to regulate their digestive tract.
To read more about these natural ingredients, go here.
The Final Woof
Digestive problems really lower the quality of your dog’s life. So if your pup has a sensitive stomach, visit your veterinarian for their expert advice, be sure to feed them easier-to-digest foods, and supplement their diet with natural ingredients to support their digestive health!
If you’re curious about what additional supplements will help your dog live their best life, take our free quiz below: