A healthy gut is a healthy dog. Prebiotics, probiotics and now postbiotics combine forces to help your dog live a long, healthy life.

You’ve likely heard of probiotics, maybe even prebiotics, but have you heard of postbiotics? It can be a complicated nutritional world out there. In the interest of your dog’s healthy gut, let’s make our way through the list of biotics terms for a better understanding.

Probiotics

Probiotics are healthy gut bacteria that help fight infections, strengthen the immune system, help digest food, and make vitamins and nutrients. We’re still discovering the effects a healthy gut or microbiome has on the various systems of the body but suffice to say a healthy gut is usually a sign of a healthy dog. Common probiotics for dogs include:

  • Lactobacillus acidophilus
  • Enterococcus faecium
  • Bifidobacterium lactis
  • Lactobacillus casei
  • Bifidobacterium breve

Prebiotics

Prebiotics are different kinds of fiber that ferment in the gut, becoming healthy food for probiotics. To do their job well, probiotics have to eat properly and eating properly means ingesting fermentable soluble fiber. Insoluble fiber is great for bulking up your dog’s stool but does not ferment—prebiotics come from soluble fiber that does ferment. Some examples of healthy soluble fiber for your dog include:

  • Inulin – a starch found in many fruits and vegetables
  • Fructo-oligosaccharides – from fruit and root vegetables
  • Mannan oligosaccharides – from the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae found in dairy products, fermented vegetables and minimally processed vegetables
  • Galactooligosaccharides – found in dairy, beans and root vegetables

Prebiotic supplements affect both the pH and the composition of the gut making it more conducive to mineral absorption. Instead of just passing through the system, vitamins and minerals are able to be better utilized by your dog’s body.

Postbiotics for your healthy dog

Postbiotics are the wastes left behind after the probiotic eats the prebiotic and they may have far greater health benefits than science previously realized. This is a new frontier for microbiome researchers and what we know today will likely pale in comparison to what we’ll know tomorrow.

Postbiotics work naturally to support beneficial bacteria and balance the gut microbiome. How is this different than a probiotic, you ask? Apparently, postbiotics can do it more efficiently than probiotics without the same level of adverse reaction some probiotics can create.

Postbiotics promote health by helping to maintain a healthy immune system, supporting the digestive system, and balancing the microbiome in your pet’s gut.

Postbiotics are involved in building:

  • short-chain fatty acids
  • enzymes
  • bacterial lysates
  • exopolysaccharides
  • lipopolysaccharides
  • cell wall fragments
  • cell-free supernatants
  • various vitamins and amino acids

Inspired by kombucha—a fermented tea that many humans love—NutriSource has created Come-Pooch-a, a digestive support meal topper for dogs. Come-Pooch-a contains all-important postbiotics in a form dogs love — in a healthy bone broth. The fermented food elevates the smell and flavor of your pet’s meal, enticing more picky eaters. The topper is also helpful for dogs who don’t drink enough water.

The Come-Pooch-a postbiotic is a lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation material with Yucca Shidigera Extract as a gut conditioner that improves digestion and supports overall health and performance.