Yes, farting is normal in dogs. However, the answer to the question of why my dog fart so much is trickier than that.
Namely, farting in dogs is normal if in moderation. Dog farting occurs to release gasses that form in the digestive tract (the dog’s stomach and intestines) during food fermentation. It is painless but usually musical and smelly.
Excessive farting often indicates health problems. There are several reasons why your dog’s farts are more frequent. The dog’s diet is the most common trigger (low-quality foods, table scraps, and fast eating are common culprits).
Brachycephalic breeds, dogs with flat faces, are more prone to passing gas more frequently. This is because dogs are known to fart more when unable to release air through the mouth.
Large dog breeds are more prone to farting than small dogs. Large and giant breeds have a more voluminous gastrointestinal system that produces and stores large amounts of gasses.
The list of dog breeds that fart the most includes:
- Golden Retriever
- Pit Bulls
- Boston Terriers
- German Shepherds.
Excessive farting is usually associated with issues with the digestive system. However, some causes of farting are more benign than others.
Let’s take a close look at answers to the “why does my dog fart so much“ question.
Your Dog Swallowed Air
A common reason dogs farting is because they swallowed a lot of air while eating. Namely, if your dog eats fast and gulps down food, it will swallow air along with the regular kibble. Fast eating habits develop due to hyperactivity, growing up with competitive siblings, or personal characteristics.
Your Dog Ate Human Foods
Human foods and table scraps may be the culprit for your dog’s farting debacle. If the puppy eyes were convincing and you offered human foods, farting is an expected outcome. Human foods and table scraps that encourage farting include spicy foods, soybeans, high-fat foods, foods rich in carbohydrates, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and dairy.
Low-Quality Dog Food
Farting can occur if your dog’s diet is of poor quality. Low-quality dog diets are indigestible (the enzymes cannot break down the food), which results in increased gas production. Plus, low-quality dog food often contains additives and fillers that cause digestive issues (in the form of sensitivities). Food sensitivities are also linked with gassiness.
A Sudden Change in Your Dog’s Diet
Another common cause of farting is a sudden diet change. If you abruptly add a new food to the dog table, it is likely to cause stomach upset. Farting is a telltale sign of tummy troubles. A dog farting because of sudden diet changes will produce particularly stinky toots. In such a case, the dog will also vomit and have diarrhea.
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Your Dog is Eating Too Much Protein
A meat-rich diet can cause smelly gas performances. Protein is an excellent nutrient for pets, and they need it. However, too much of a good thing is not always the best. Therefore, when your dog is overeating meat, especially red meat, it will fart a lot. Red meat is sulfur-rich, and sulfur is known to cause stinky farts.
Your Dog Has Food Poisoning
Food poisoning is a serious topic and can be a reason for excessive farting. Severe cases of food poisoning are life-threatening and require prompt veterinary attention. However, milder cases often trigger stomach upset – vomiting, diarrhea, appetite loss, lethargy, dehydration, and gassiness.
Your Dog Has a Food Intolerance or Sensitivity
Food allergies are common in dogs and often cause excess gas production. For example, if your dog is lactose intolerant, eating dairy products results in a serious farting episode. Food allergies upset the digestive tract and can cause all sorts of unwelcomed issues – from stinky toots to explosive diarrhea.
Yes, you should be worried if your dog is farting a lot. Excessive farting is not always a big deal. However, as a dog owner, it is better to err on the side of caution.
Here are some severe medical conditions that can make your dog fart a lot.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Irritable bowel syndrome is a specific health issue in which the intestinal muscles do not work properly, which results in diarrhea and constipation. As a motility disorder, IBS is usually caused by food intolerances and stress.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Known as inflammatory bowel syndrome, IBD is caused by chronic irritation in the dog’s intestines. The exact trigger for the condition is unidentified. IBD results in poor dog food digestion and is associated with vomiting and diarrhea.
Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency (EPI). The pancreas synthesizes hormones and digestive enzymes. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency is when the pancreas cannot produce adequate levels of such digestive enzymes.
Intestinal Parasites. Dogs can host a variety of parasites. Intestinal parasites (also known as worms) are a common issue, especially in young puppies. In addition to causing flatulence or gassiness, worms trigger loose poop, scooting, weight loss, poor coat quality, and anemia.
Cancer. Another reason your dog might be farting a lot is cancer. Stomach cancer in dogs is not common, but it is malignant and very aggressive. Dogs with cancer will manifest an array of signs and symptoms in addition to farting.
Pancreatitis. Finally, a possible contributing factor to your dog’s flatulence is pancreatitis – a painful inflammation of the pancreas. When inflamed, the pancreas cannot function properly, which leads to digestion issues and excessive gas formation.
Reducing your dog’s gas production is possible. Here are some simple yet very helpful ways of getting rid of stinky and noisy toots.
Change Your Dog’s Diet
As mentioned, poor diet is one of the common causes of dog farts. Luckily, there is a simple solution – switch your pet to a high-quality food formula. If your dog is sensitive to meat, try a vegan diet or if suffering from food allergies, go for homemade organic meals.
Avoid Giving Your Dog Human Foods
Human food contains grains, spices, and nutrients that cause indigestion in dogs. While it is tempting to treat your dog with a little bit of your food, indulgence does more harm than good. Do not fall for your dog’s begging puppy eyes.
Increase Your Dog’s Exercise Level
Exercise aids in healthy digestion. If your lazy pooch is particularly gassy, introduce a physical activity regimen and stick to it. For example, you can take your dog on a play or run session before serving the meal.
Use a Slow Feeder Bowl for Your Dog
The slow feeder bowl is a game-changer for fast-eating dogs. Gulping down on food leads to bloating, which is dangerous. If looking for a slow feeder, try the Outward Hound slow feeder dog bowls – they are vet-recommended and made with pet-safe materials. Plus, the feeders come in several shapes and sizes to fit the needs of different dogs and jaw types.
Probiotics and Prebiotics for Dogs
Supplements like probiotics for dogs can help with gassiness. Probiotics are specific strains of good bacteria that live in the gut and support healthy digestion. The best supplement for dogs is the Honest Paws Pre+ Probiotic – it contains different beneficial bacteria and fibers. Plus, it comes as a chicken-flavored powder packed in individual single-dose sachets.