Species of Dog Probiotics

Canine Specific Research

There are only about 9 species of probiotics that have been researched for dogs to have benefit in the body. These species of bacteria include:

1. Species of ProbioticsL. acidophilus 

Lactobacillus acidophilus is everywhere in human and dog probiotics alike and for good reason. It has the ability to actually cling to the intestinal wall without harming it. In fact, it is best known for its ability to move un-disrupted through the stomach and into the intestines where it eats away at disease causing bacteria.


  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • increasing nutrient uptake (especially calcium)
  • preventing food poisoning,
  • producing B vitamins,
  • alleviating dermatitis and other skin and coat conditions.

L. acidophilus is a staple for any probiotic supplement, but alone is usually not enough for therapeutic use. [7]

2. B. animalis lactis 

Bifidobacterium animalis lactis (or B. lactis) is one of the most researched probiotic strains for domestic animals. It is a key species for any dog probiotic to improving gastrointestinal health, however, is lacking in most formulas. B. animalis lactis is found in the large intestine and aids in protecting and removing toxins from the colon. Because of its positive properties, many companies have attemtped to trademark strains of B. animalis as a marketing technique, however, the basic species is all you need to know. [6]


  • removing toxins from the colon
  • improving overall gastrointestinal health in dogs
  • recovering from antibiotics

3. L. rhamnosus 

Lactobacillus rhamnosus is one of the more highly studied probiotic subspecies for dogs and a foundational species of probiotics in canine intestinal tracts. This species is primarily used in the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders as it is effective bullying out harmful or pathogenic bacteria.


  • resisting yeast
  • urinary tract infections
  • allergies and immune support

L. rhamnosus is a a great species for female dogs, or dogs prone to yeast overgrowth. [8]

4. L. salivarius 

Lactobacillus salivarius has been shown through research to produce a high amount of lactic acid, which helps to inhibit the growth of H. pylori, thusly reducing the associated inflammation and risk for dogs with peptic ulcers (stomach and intestinal), and irritable bowel sydrome. [8]


  • stomach and intestinal ulcers
  • irritable bowel syndrome
  • stomach and intestinal upset

5. L. fermentum 

Lactobacillus fermentum is highly researched to help prevent and aid in urogenital infections and effective in inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria in the canine body. [8]


  • urinary tract and bladder infections
  • recovering from antibiotics
  • immune support

6. L. reuteri 

Lactobacillus reuterii is widely researched for dogs and cats. L. reuteri works to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria as well as support production of natural antibiotic-like substances. This subspecies of theLactobacillus genus is perfect for dogs fighting infections and recovering from antibiotics. [9]


  • recovering from antibiotics
  • general wellness
  • immune support
  • stomach and intestinal upset

7. E. faecium

Enterococcus faecium (formerly Streptococcus faecium) is part of the the normal gastrointestinal tract of dogs and humans. While it is found in many dog nutrition and dog supplement products, it should be noted that this species is somewhat controversial. E. faecium has been shown to both stimulate the immune systems in puppies [10], and become an opportunistic pathogen, taking on the characteristics of pathogenic bacteria and/or translocating in the body via the bloodstream [1, 2, 3, 11]. This probiotic is not an apparent health risk, however, humans handling this probiotic for their dog should be sure to wash their hands after handling.


  • diarrhea
  • stimulating immune system

8. Bacillus coagulans

Bacillus coagulans, while not a part of the natural digestive tract in dogs, is a common species found in probiotic supplements for dogs and shown to be effective in treating against the species C. difficile[12]. This species can survive extreme heat and stomach acid pH and multiplies rapidly in the right conditions making it effective for dogs with Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), diarrhea, or irregular stools. While this species is recognized as a safe food ingredient, because it is a spore-forming bacteria, and some manufacturings plants consider it a pathogen, it should be handled with care [13].


  • diarrhea
  • stomach and intestinal upset



Cites and References

  1. de Perio MA, Yarnold PR, Warren J, et al. Risk factors and outcomes associated with non-Enterococcus faecalis, non-Enterococcus faecium enterococcal bacteremia. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2006 Jan. 27(1):28-33.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus--New York, 2004. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2004 Apr 23. 53(15):322-3. 
  3. Chang S, Sievert DM, Hageman JC, Boulton ML, Tenover FC, Downes FP, et al. Infection with vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus containing the vanA resistance geneN Engl J Med. 2003 Apr 3. 348(14):1342-7.
  4. O'Sullivan GC, Kelly P, O'Halloran S, Collins C, Collins JK, Dunne C, et al. Probiotics: an emerging therapy. Curr Pharm Des 2005;11:3-10. 
  5. O'Sullivan GC. Probiotics. Br J Surg 2001;88:161-2. 
  6. Vet Ther. 2009 Fall;10(3):121-30: Clinical benefits of probiotic canine-derived Bifidobacterium animalis strain AHC7 in dogs with acute idiopathic diarrhea.
  7. Arch Tierernahr. 2001;55(3):243-53.
  8. J Appl Microbiol. 2006 Jul;101(1):131-8. Lactic acid bacteria isolated from canine faeces.
  9. Food Sci. 2007 Apr;72(3):M94-7. Isolation and characterization of Lactobacillus species having isolation and characterization of Lactobacillus species having potential for use as probiotic cultures for dogs.
  10. J Nutr. 2003 Apr;133(4):1158-62. Supplementation of food with Enterococcus faecium (SF68) stimulates immune functions in young dogs. Benyacoub J1, Czarnecki-Maulden GL, Cavadini C, Sauthier T, Anderson RE, Schiffrin EJ, von der Weid T.
  11. Clin Infect Dis. 32 (9):1384-1385. doi: 10.1086/319994. Probiotic Enterococcus faecium Strain Is a Possible Recipient of the vanA Gene Cluster.
  12. Fitzpatrick, LR. (Aug 2013). "Probiotics for the treatment of Clostridium difficile associated disease.". World J Gastrointest Pathophysiol. 4 (3): 47–52. doi:10.4291/wjgp.v4.i3.47. PMID 23946887
  13. Food Chem Toxicol. 2009 Jun; 47(6): 1231–1238. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2009.02.018 Safety assessment of a proprietary preparation of a novel Probiotic, Bacillus coagulans, as a food ingredient J.R. Endres,a,⁎ A. Clewell,a K.A. Jade,a T. Farber,b J. Hauswirth,c and A.G. Schaussa


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