Probiotics are important for keeping the beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract in equilibrium with the the more harmful ones that find their way into the system. A situation thats compromised when a dog has recently been on antibiotics as Eti has- the antibiotics kill both the good along with the bad bacteria.

Its's argued however that given the highly acidic environment of the canine digestive system probiotics may not be effective as they are unable to survive that environment. There is a school of thought that believes it's best to give probiotics between meals when the digestive juices are less active. The other, and one that I subscribe to, is to give one with as broad a range of bacteria as possible to ensure the inclusion of strains that do survive that environment. Kefir, which contains, certainly in the case of the brand that I get for Eti from Wholefoods-Helios, more than thirty different kinds of these bacteria far exceeding the more limited ranges found in the powdered form or in capsules and even its cousin live yogurt.

Another advantage with Kefir is that more of the Lactose is pre digested and therefore less problematic for lactose intolerant dogs- I do notice Eti tolerates Kefir extremely well whereas with live yogurt- which I give him on occasion can affect/loosen his stools. Yet another benefit is -I've grown to love it myself. I'm not a great a fan of live yogurt but the much less tangy Kefir I find quite pleasant tasting and great with fruit. So Kefir is a regular feature in our fridge, Eti gets a teaspoon of it most days mixed into his meal.


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