Is Your Senior Retriever Gassy? Tips for Dealing with Gas in Older Golden Retrievers

gassy-goldenWe have all been there. You are sitting on the couch in the evening after dinner enjoying your favorite TV show when a stomach-churning odor wafts your way. As the only person in the room, you know it didn’t come from you and that leaves just one possible culprit – your Golden Retriever. Gas is fairly common in dogs, especially as they age, but it could be an indication of a larger health problem so you should have your dog checked by your veterinarian.

What Causes Gas in Golden Retrievers?

In many cases, gas in Golden Retrievers is the direct result of something they have eaten. While you probably already know that dogs are carnivores, you may not completely understand what that means. It means that your dog’s body is adapted to digesting and utilizing animal products (like meat, fish, and eggs) more than plant products. Because your dog’s body has a limited ability to digest carbohydrates, eating too much of these hard to digest foods can cause gastrointestinal upset and gas. Many low-quality pet foods are made with high levels of carbohydrates, especially things like corn, wheat, and soy, which are low in nutritional value for dogs and hard to digest.

Even if you feed your Golden Retriever a grain-free and gluten-free diet, he could still experience gas as a result of something he eats. Many dogs are sensitive or intolerant to dairy products and, for many dogs, rich or fatty table scraps can cause gas as well. Your dog could even be allergic to a number of healthy ingredients that are commonly used in high-quality dog foods – things like beef, chicken, or lamb. Artificial additives like colors, flavors, and preservatives can contribute to gas as well.

Tips for Reducing Gas in Dogs

A little flatulence here and there is normal in dogs and it is generally not something to worry about. If it becomes a frequent issue, however, it is not something you want to ignore because it could be more than just a food sensitivity – it could be an indication of a larger underlying health issue. If your Golden Retriever develops chronic gas, you should take him to the veterinarian to determine the cause of his flatulence and to make sure it isn’t something serious. Once you’ve determined that your dog’s flatulence isn’t anything to worry about, try these tips to reduce his gas:

  • Switch your Golden Retriever over to a high-quality, highly digestible dog food made with healthy ingredients and devoid of artificial additives.
  • Avoid feeding your dog table scraps, especially foods containing lactose, high levels of fat, or a high number of calories.
  • Try to keep your Golden Retriever from eating too quickly – if he eats too fast he could end up swallowing a lot of air that might contribute to gas.
  • Keep an eye on your dog’s stools to gauge his gastrointestinal health – his stools should be firm and well-formed, not overly soft or runny.
  • Take your Golden Retriever to the vet if his flatulence persists or gets worse after you try some of these tips.

It is completely normal for your Golden Retriever to let one loose once in a while but you should be concerned if it becomes a chronic issue. As long as your veterinarian is able to confirm that your dog’s flatulence isn’t anything to worry about you can try using some of the tips provided above to reduce the frequency and severity of your dog’s gas.

Photo credit: Dagny Gromer/Flickr

The article, Is Your Senior Retriever Gassy? Tips for Dealing with Gas in Older Golden Retrievers was originally posted on July 13, 2016 and was last updated on July 13, 2016. It was posted in the category, Health with the Tags: , , , ,

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