Probiotic Itch Relief for Dogs: Does It Work?

Probiotic Itch Relief for Dogs: Does It Work?

Updated: April 29, 2024

If you're a dog owner, you know that one of the most frustrating and heartbreaking things to witness is your furry friend suffering from incessant itching. From allergies to skin conditions, your dog can be itching for many reasons.

Probiotics have gained popularity as a potential solution for addressing various health issues in dogs, including itch relief. But the question remains: Do probiotics help dogs with itching? 

Let's delve into this topic and find out.

Why Is My Dog Itching?

Before we look at the potential benefits of dog probiotics for itching and skin issues, it's crucial to understand the root causes of itchy skin, often referred to as pruritus, in our canine companions. 

According to American Kennel Club, common reasons for itching in dogs include:

  • Allergies: Food allergies, environmental allergies, and seasonal allergies can trigger itching and skin allergies in dogs, often referred to as atopic dermatitis. Pollen and dust in the air, or even contact with certain soaps, perfumes, and detergents, can trigger reactions. 
  • Skin infections: Fungal or bacterial infections, such as ringworm, can lead to itching and discomfort. Dogs can easily pick these types of things up at boarding facilities, dog parks, and doggy daycares. 
  • Dry skin: Insufficient moisture, especially during the dry winter season, can cause irritation and itching. 
  • Parasites: External parasites like fleas and dust mites can irritate a dog's skin, resulting in scratching.

Along with your dog itching at their ears, nose, butt, or stomach, you may also notice some other issues. Hair loss, redness, and hot spots often go hand-in-hand with itching. 

What Are Dog Probiotics? 

Dog probiotics are supplements containing beneficial bacteria that are believed to promote digestive health in dogs. These supplements typically contain strains of bacteria such as Lactobacillus, which are similar to those found naturally in your dog's gastrointestinal tract.

Probiotics are thought to help balance the microbial population in the gut, which can be disrupted by factors such as stress, diet changes, medications, or illness. By restoring balance to the gut microbiome, probiotics may help improve digestion, reduce gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea or constipation, boost the immune system, and support overall health in dogs.

Dog probiotics come in various forms, including powders, capsules, chews, and liquid formulations. It's important to choose a probiotic product specifically formulated for dogs, as human probiotics may not be suitable or effective for them.

How Probiotics Can Support Healthy Skin in Dogs

While you hear a lot about harmful bacteria, not all bacteria is bad. Probiotics are live bacteria that are good for your dog's health, primarily aiding digestion and promoting a healthy microbiome. A balanced gut microbiome can have far-reaching effects on your dog's overall well-being, including its skin health. 

Immune System Support

Research shows that “your dog’s gastrointestinal tract contains about 70% of their immune system. Probiotics have been shown to help improve the gut microbiome and support the immune system. A stronger immune system makes your pet more resilient to allergies and infections that might trigger your dog’s itching.

Anti-Inflammatory Effects

Certain probiotic strains have been found to have anti-inflammatory properties. Reducing skin inflammation can help minimize the associated itching and speed up the healing process.

Reduced Stress

Probiotics may help alleviate stress and anxiety in dogs, which can be a factor in some skin conditions. Research has shown that up to “70% of behavioral issues in dogs can be attributed to anxiety” — and balancing your gut-microbiome can improve the gut-brain connection and reduce that anxiety. 

Choosing the Right Probiotic Itch Relief Supplement For Your Pet

Not all probiotics are created equal. Maya Pet goes beyond a typical pet probiotic in numerous ways.

Minimal additives

Many probiotics have added ingredients to boost flavor or freshness. Unfortunately, many of these additives can make digestive and skin issues worse. 

Maya Pet is as natural as possible to minimize any chance of complications or side effects, such as skin issues and itching. It contains organic sprouted whole wheat and various types of beneficial bacteria. 

Maya Pet is also non-GMO,  dairy-free, nut-free, dye-free, and egg-free. 

Bacteria Strains 

Look for probiotic supplements containing a variety of strains. Maya Pet has 10 Smart StrainsTM of good bacteria to help your pet’s digestion, immune system, and overall wellness, which can lead to better skin health. 

We sort our strains into four main categories — enhancers, managers, inhibitors, and communicators.

Enhancers boost the gut microbiome and improve digestion.

  • Lactococcus lactis A2020™
  • Pediococcus pentosaceus A4000h™
  • Lactobacillus plantarum LP100™
  • Lactobacillus casei LC222™ 

Managers target gut acid and turn it into energy. 

  • Propionibacterium freudenreichii Prop1-IAC™ 
  • Bacillus pumilus 8G-134™

Inhibitors block unwanted pathogens and bad bacteria, which can lead to itchiness and skin reactions.

  • Bacillus subtilis B5000h™
  • Bacillus subtilis B5005h™
  • Bacillus subtilis B5150h™ 

Communicators boost the connection between the gut and the brain. 

  • Lactobacillus reuteri 1E-1™

Easy to Consume

For best results, probiotics need to be a consistent part of your dog's daily routine. That becomes more difficult when your dog is resistant to taking the supplement. 

Maya Pet comes in a convenient powder form that is easy to add to your pet’s normal food. Just sprinkle it over kibble or mix it in with wet food. The powder removes the mess of a topical cream and stress of trying to get a picky, anxious dog to swallow a pill.

Start Your Pet’s Journey to Better Health Today

Probiotics have shown potential in helping to relieve itching in dogs, primarily by improving gut health, boosting the immune system, and reducing inflammation. 

Combining Maya Pet with a holistic approach to your dog's health, including proper nutrition, regular grooming, and a clean living environment, can help you provide itch relief for your furry friend.

Try Maya Pet