Most dog owners understand that supplementation at times can be an important part of keeping your dog healthy. Many dogs are stressed by commercial, processed diets, vaccines, drugs and toxins. Even dogs who are fed the best and are not victims of drug and vaccine overload still carry the baggage of their ancestors and are still exposed to environmental pollutants. In time, these toxins will stress the immune system.
It’s common knowledge that dogs who have been on antibiotics or dogs who need an immune boost in general should be fed probiotics. Within the dog’s gut, there is a vast colony of bacteria, some of which are beneficial to the dog and some of which are not. When the balance of good and bad bacteria are out of balance – so is the immune system. When this happens, probiotics can restore the growth of good bacteria and restore proper immune function.
There are many ways to get probiotics into your dog and one of the most common is yoghurt. It’s true that yoghurt contains a good amount of probiotics. The problem with yoghurt however, is that most of it is pasteurized. Pasteurization is the process of heating something to high temperatures in order to kill off harmful pathogens and bacteria, theoretically making it safe for human consumption.
A 1984 study at Kalawati Saran Children’s Hospital and Department of Microbiology demonstrates the negative effects of pasteurizing milk:
It appears that pasteurized dairy products actually cause more stress to the immune system. In her book, The Medical Mafia, Dr Guylaine Lanctôt debunks pasteurization with a one-two punch:
The temperature is not high enough.
The temperature is too high.
First, Dr Lanctôt notes that dangerous bacteria are not killed by the temperatures used, and there have been a good number of salmonella epidemics traced to pasteurized milk.
Second, the heating process destroys the milk. Dr. Lanctôt shows that pasteurization destroys milk’s intrinsic germicidal properties, not to mention healthy enzymes and bacteria.
What this means is that the yoghurt you feed your dog can not only contain dangerous bacteria, but the beneficial bacteria and enzymes are destroyed, so the yoghurt is working against your dog, not for him.
If you wish to supplement your dog with probiotics, your best bet is to skip the yoghurt and just give him probiotics. Preferably, the probiotics you feed him will be soil based – they are more likely to survive the dog’s acidic gut and pack a much more powerful punch than dairy based products.