The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (2024)

Probiotic supplements for dogs contain healthy strains of bacteria. Formulated to improve a dog’s gut flora, these beneficial additions to a balanced diet are packaged in easy-to-consume formats for dogs, like pills, powders, chewable tablets, and sprays.

Inconsistent stool, frequent bouts of diarrhea,and foul smelling gas are among the symptoms a dog may exhibit when they experience digestive discomfort, and they can often be successfully alleviated with a probiotic supplement.

It is always best to consult with your veterinarian first to rule out any underlying issues, but probiotics made for dogs are generally safe and advantageous to their overall health. “Probiotics have beneficial effects onimmune function,”Patrick Carney, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (SAIM), an assistant professor at Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, shared with The Spruce Pets.Dr. Carney also cites inflammatory bowel disease as a condition where a dog is likely to benefit from probiotic supplements.

To help you select the best probiotic for your dog, we polled real dog parents about which supplements they choose for their dog and why. We collected a wide range of data to inform our dog probiotic selections, including information about their dog's weight and age, in addition to detailed information about why they chose their dog's probiotic supplement. You can learn more about our polling methodology below our recommendations, under the heading How We Found The Best Probiotic Supplements for Dogs.

For most dogs, we recommend Purina Pro Plan FortiFlora Probiotic Supplement, which is designed to treat gastrointestinal issues like diarrhea, and is easy to incorporate into a dog’s normal feeding routine. There are several other probiotic supplements that may be a better match for your dog’s needs.

Best Overall

Purina Pro Plan Fortiflora Probiotic Supplement

The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (1)

What We Like

  • Can be sprinkled on food or given as treat

  • Veterinarian-researched bacteria for gut flora

  • Pre-measured packets are easy to use

What We Don't Like

  • Liver flavor can change taste of your dog's food (some dogs love it, some don't)

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary FortiFlora Powder Digestive Supplement comes in pre-measured packets, making it incredibly straightforward to ensure that your dog is getting the recommended daily dose of probiotics. FortiFlora is particularly helpful for puppies and adult dogs with diarrhea issues, but it also helps reduce flatulence. From our survey, The majority of the dog parents who participated in our survey found this product to be reliable and effective. It was capable of helping dogs with digestive challenges transition into regularity and ease within a week.

FortiFlora uses a specific strain ofenterococcus faecium, a bacteria commonly found naturally in the digestive tract of both humans and dogs.This probiotic strain has several cited advantages, including hardy growth that crowds out harmful bacteria likeE. coli. This probiotic supplement from Purina Pro Plan also provides vitamin E, protein, and antioxidants.

The canine supplement is sold as a powder in packs of 30, 45, 60, 90, or 120 sachets. Each sachet is filled with liver-flavored powder to be sprinkled over a dog’s food. We found that most dogs enjoy the flavor boost, but there is also a chewable version of FlortiFlora that an be given as a treat.

Format: Powder, tablet | Quantity: 30, 45, 60, 90, or 120 sachets | CFUs: 100 million | Ingredients: Enterococcus faecium, L-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), brewer's dried yeast, vitamin E supplement, zinc proteinate, beta-carotene, salt, manganese proteinate, ferrous sulfate, copper proteinate, calcium iodate, sodium selenite

CFU

CFU stands for colony-forming units, which is the number of alive and active microorganisms in one serving of a probiotic dietary supplement. The current recommended daily dosage for dogs is between 1-10 billion CFUs.

What We Like

  • Capsule can be given as-is or sprinkled over food

  • Safe for cats and dogs

  • Seven-strain formula

What We Don't Like

  • Capsules made from animal byproduct gelatin

NutraMax's Proviable DC Digestive Health Supplements are conveniently packaged in capsules which are filled with a sprinkle-friendly probiotic formula. You can give your dog the pill or pop open the capsule to deposit the contents on top of your dog's favorite food. The formula is a virtually taste-free and brimming with seven different strains of good bacteria.

Each capsule offers 5 billion CFU per serving. In addition to gut-regulating probiotics, which may help with digestive issues related to stress and diet changes (and thus may abate unpleasantries like loose stool and vomiting), these capsules also contain prebiotics, which essentially function as “food” for the good bacteria to thrive and work their best.

In addition to daily maintenance, the supplement can be used in short-term scenarios. A survey participant praised the supplement for helping to relieve their dog's upset stomach that was a side-effect from another prescribed medication the dog was taking. Disruption to the digestive system is common with antibiotics, but in a little over a week their dog's potty sessions were back to normal. This formula is safe for both dogs and cats, making it a convenient option for multi-pet households.

Format: Capsule | Quantity: 30, 60, or 80 capsules | CFUs: 5 billion | Ingredients: Enterococcus faecium, Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus bulgaricus, Lactobacillus casei, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Lactobacillus plantarum

Best Powder

Fera Pet Organics Probiotics with Prebiotics

The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (3)

What We Like

  • USDA-certified organic ingredients

  • Tasteless and odorless

  • Vegan and gluten-free

  • Safe for cats too

What We Don't Like

  • Requires measured scoops

This vet-formulated scoop-and-serve, ultra-fine powder is packed with prebiotics and probiotics. You’ll find an impressively high number of strains; there are 12 different strains in total, which surpasses the number found in most pet probiotic products. The ingredients are certified USDA organic, third-party tested, and made in GMP-registered facilities.

You won’t find additives, fillers, or anything potentially iffy or synthetic in this product, either. The formula is tasteless, odorless, and colorless, making it extra simple to mix into your dog’s food undetected; for this reason, it’s a win for many pet parents who have picky eaters on their hands. In addition to supporting general gastrointestinal wellness, this product is formulated to help lessen bad breath and diarrhea.

This powder formula is safe for use in both dogs and cats, which offers additional savings and convenience to multi-pet households. It’s also shelf-stable, so you don’t have to clear room in the fridge or worry about it spoiling in the pantry.

The Fera Pet Organics powder is loaded with 12 strains of probiotics, with each scoop delivering 5 billion CFU.

Format: Powder | Quantity: 2.5 ounces | CFUs: 5 billion | Ingredients: FOS (fructooligosaccharides), organic inulin derived from agave, organic acacia, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei, Saccharomyces boulardii, Lactobacillus plantarum, Bifidobacterium infantis, Enterococcus faeciuim, Lactobacillus bulgaricus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium longum, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus brevis

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Best for Older Dogs

Amazing Nutritionals Probiotic Joint Chewable Tablets

The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (4)

What We Like

What We Don't Like

  • Chewable tablets aren't appealing to all dogs

As your dog ages, new problems may begin to pop up. Tackle any developing digestive dilemmas and ease joint pain with a probiotic for senior dogs, like Amazing Nutritionals Probiotics Joint Formula.

This supplement is fordogs who suffer from arthritis, joint pain, and stiffness. It omits many of the most common allergens for dogs, including wheat, corn, soy, egg, gluten, and more but includes 7 billion CFU of beneficial bacteria. In addition, your dog will get a dose of MSM, chondroitin, and glucosamine to ease any arthritis and support joint and cartilage health. It's also supplemented with stomach enzymes to bolster digestion.

Amazing Nutritionals Probiotics Joint Formula is made in the United States in a certified pharmaceutical quality facility (cGMP).

Formulation: Chewable tablet | Quantity: 120 count | CFUs: 7.5 billion Lactobacillus acidophilus | Ingredients: Amylase, lipase, protease (stomach enzymes), glucosamine sulfate, chondroitin sulfate, methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), dicalcium phosphate, liver, stearic acid, whey, bacon flavor, magnesium stearate, silicon dioxide

Can Dogs Eat Yogurt?

Best Chews

Zesty Paws Probiotic Bites

The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (5)

What We Like

  • Two flavors: pumpkin or chicken

  • High CFU load of six different strains of probiotics

  • Can be crumbled up for use as food topper

What We Don't Like

  • Not every dog loves pumpkin

If your dog is experiencing digestive distress or frequent tummy trouble, a probiotic with digestive enzymes may help ease digestion and regulate elimination. Zesty Paws Probiotic Bites contain the probiotic load and supplemental stomach enzymes we recommend along with a classic canine digestive aid: pumpkin. The high-fiber squash has long beenrecommended by veterinarians for digestive issuesand forms the foundation for these chews.

Each Zesty Paws Probiotic Bites soft chew has over 3 billion CFU of six different probiotic strains, which is equivalent to some prescription-strength probiotics. In addition to its primary pumpkin ingredient, Zesty Paws Probiotic Bites also incorporate papaya, which is high in folate and vitamin C. Together, these two natural ingredients are likely to help your dogproperly digest and eliminate food.

Participants in our survey praised the chews for their flavor and texture, which did not leave a mess and seemed to be enjoyed by their dogs. In as little as a week there was a noticeable improvement in their dogs' respective digestive systems.

The chews come in two flavors, pumpkin or chicken. Both flavors contain pumpkin, but the pumpkin-flavored bites omit natural chicken flavoring. If your dog is uninterested in the flavor, try crumbling up a chew and using it as a food topper instead.

Formulation: Soft chew | Quantity: 90, 180, or 270 count | CFUs: 3 billion including Bacillus subtilus, Lactobacillus acidophilus, and four other strains | Ingredients: Pumpkin, papaya, pea flour, palm fruit oil, garbanzo flour, tapioca flour, flaxseed meal, sunflower lecithin, natural vegetable flavoring, coconut glycerin, rosemary extract

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Best for Puppies

The Honest Kitchen Pro Bloom Instant Goat's Milk Probiotics

The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (6)

What We Like

  • Easy to prepare

  • Can be served alone or as a food topper

  • Enhances hydration

  • Can also be served to cats

What We Don't Like

  • Hard to keep mixture from getting a little lumpy

  • Serving size is too large for puppies

  • Must be mixed every time

Support a healthy gut from an early age by introducing an easy-to-digest probiotic like The Honest Kitchen's Daily Boosters Instant Goat's Milk.

Each half tablespoon of Daily Booster goat milk contains 1.25 billion CFU of four different strains of healthy bacteria. The dehydrated supplement is made to human-grade food standards, using goat's milk from pasture-raised goats. Approved by the National Animal Supplement Council, The Honest Kitchen's probiotic powder doesn't use any preservatives, GMO ingredients, corn, wheat, or soy.

What makes this goat milk Daily Booster so useful for puppies is that it can be used as an easy food topper or provided as a hydrating bowl of liquid. Preparation is easy: Simply mix well with warm water. The probiotic milk is then ready to be poured over food, enhancing your active puppy's hydration.

The Honest Kitchen Daily Boosters are available in a dry powder jar or in single-serving packets. One downside for puppy owners is that the serving size is calibrated for a 25-pound dog, so you'll likely have to measure out a smaller serving for your puppy.

Format: Powder | Quantity: 5.2-ounce jar, 12-count single servings | CFUs: 1.25 billion, including Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, and Bacillus coagulans | Ingredients: Dehydrated goat's milk, dried Aspergillus oryzae fermentation product, dried Aspergillus niger product, dried Trichoderma reesei fermentation product, dried pineapple fermentation product

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Best for Anal Glands

Vetnique Labs Glandex Anal Gland Support

The 7 Best Probiotics for Dogs To Keep Them Regular, According to 26 Real Dogs (7)

What We Like

  • Two flavors: pork liver or peanut butter

  • Promotes the formation of bulkier stool

  • Appeals to picky eaters

What We Don't Like

  • Contains less CFUs than other probiotics on our list

Ventique Labs Glandex Anal Gland Support Chews are formulated to facilitate natural anal gland function and digestion in dogs. Each flavored soft chew delivers a blend of fiber along with probiotics to encourage the formation of bulkier stool which can keep a dog's glands from becoming impacted with fuild.

The soft chews come in two flavors, peanut butter and pork liver, and our survey participants praised the chews for their appeal to picky eaters. The treat-like supplement contains apple pectin and pumpkin to facilitate anal gland expression, quercetin to help alleviate anal discomfort and itchiness, and one probiotic strain, Lactobacillus acidophilus, which naturally lives in a dog's intestinal tract and prohibits the growth of other harmful bacteria.

All dogs have anal glands, but some have more difficulty with anal gland expression. If your dog is scooting, straining while defecating, and/or excessively licking their rear end, they might have impacted anal glands. We also recommend Ventique Labs Glandex Rear End Pet Wipes to help soothe and refresh a dog's bum.

Format: Soft chews | Quantity: 30, 60, and 120 | CFUs: 480 million Lactobacillus acidophilus | Ingredients: Pumpkin seed powder, granulated pumpkin seed, apple pectin cellulose powder, quercetin dihydrate, lactobacillus acidophilus, bromelain, canola oil, dehydrated peanut butter (peanut butter only), desiccated pork liver powder (pork flavor only) flaxseed oil, glycerin, peanut butter (peanut butter only), potato starch, rice bran, sorbic acid (natural preservative), sucrose (peanut butter only), sunflower lecithin, water

Final Verdict

Purina Fortiflora Canine Nutritional Supplement is our overall favorite. It comes in pre-measured packets, making it easy to give your dog the correct daily dose of probiotics. If you're looking for a chew instead, check out Zesty Paws Probiotic Bites, which come in two flavors—chicken or pumpkin, are made with real pumpkin, and contain six strains of beneficial probiotic bacteria.

How We Found the Best Probiotics for Dogs

There are many different probiotics on the market and our research panel put together a comprehensive questionnaire to evaluate them. We asked dog owners what qualities matter most to them when it comes to choosing a probiotic for their dog. We also learned what brands veterinarians recommended, the list of ingredients in each probiotic supplement, the cost, and its availability at retailers.

We gathered details about each dog's breed, weight, age, any symptoms they were having if they had been checked by a vet, and what medications they were using.

In total, 26 respondents described how they and their dogs felt about the probiotics for dogs they used, sharing their feedback and numerical scores.

What to Look for in Probiotics for Dogs

Ease of Use

Like all dog supplements, probiotics for dogs come in different formulations, including powders, capsules, tablets, chews, and even sprays. Individual dogs may accept one formulation more readily—for instance, a powder mixed into the food. Chewable products can also be convenient, though individual dogs might not like the taste of every chew. Some powered probiotics for dogs come in pre-measured doses, eliminating the need for measuring spoons.

Species-Specific Probiotics

Always choose probiotics made specifically for dogs to ensure the product contains the correct strains of beneficial bacteria. Look for probiotic products that contain a guaranteed level of live microorganisms.

The advice that we got from Patrick Carney, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (SAIM), assistant professor of community practiceat Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, is: “Stick to those [products] with more research, which tend to be the ones from well-known veterinary manufacturers.”

Expiration

Because probiotic products for dogs contain living organisms, they must be stored properly to keep the good bacteria alive. Follow all instructions on the product label. Some probiotics must be stored in the refrigerator, and all should be kept cool and dry and away from overly warm temperatures. Always look at the use-by date on the package. As with human supplements, probiotics for dogs should include a clear expiration date. Bacteria that comprise probiotics are live, of course, so it’s important to ensure they’re still viable.

Serving Size

The size and weight of your dog will determine the proper dosage amount for most probiotics, with smaller dogs requiring less than larger canines. The recommended serving should be included on the label of the probiotic you select. Going above the recommended amount may lead to digestive discomfort and giving less may not deliver the intended benefits of the probiotic.

Certifications and Seals

USDA Organic: The United States Department of Agriculture allows the USDA Orangic seal to be featured on products that have been reviewed and certified to be made with organic ingredients. You can find more specifics on the USDA's requirements on their site (https://www.ams.usda.gov/rules-regulations/organic/labeling).

NASC Quality Seal: The National Animal Supplement Council is a non-profit organization based in the United States. The seal on products indicates the company's commitment to quality, vigilance, and continuous improvement to promote the well-being of companion animals and horses. Products are subject to documented quality control, random third-party testing, stringent label, and ongoing auditing and review.

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FAQ

  • Can you give a dog probiotics to help with diarrhea?

    Probiotics can be helpful for dogs suffering from diarrhea, especially diarrhea caused by stomach upset from switching foods abruptly, diarrhea caused by stress or anxiety, and diarrhea that occurs after using antibiotics. However, it’s important to see a veterinarian to find out what is causing your dog’s diarrhea, as probiotics alone cannot always resolve diarrhea, and your dog may need further tests or treatment. Always talk to your veterinarian before starting any supplement, including probiotics.

  • Is yogurt a good probiotic for dogs?

    Small amounts of plain, unsweetened yogurt may provide dogs with some beneficial bacteria that might help improve digestion and gut health, but there's no scientific evidence to back this up. Large amounts of dairy, including yogurt, can cause stomach upset in dogs, so give no more than 1 to 3 teaspoons of yogurt per day, depending on whether your dog is small, medium, or large.

  • Can dogs take human probiotics?

    In most cases, human probiotics do not pose a risk to dogs, but Dr. Carney does not recommend this approach.

    “The majority of human probiotics do not seem to survive transit through the canine gastrointestinal tract,” he said. “So I do not recommend using human probiotics—they are not likely to be harmful, but are also very unlikely to provide any benefit. If using a probiotic, I would recommend a veterinary-specific product.”

  • What do probiotics do for dogs?

    Early research suggests that probiotics may aid in digestion and relieve a bevy of discomforts, including diarrhea and other stool irregularities.

    “The level of research behind veterinary probiotics varies widely,” Carney told The Spruce Pets. In fact, he notes, “Anyone can package any bacteria and call it a veterinary probiotic!”

    As such, it's important to seek out trusted brands with transparent manufacturing practices.

Why Trust The Spruce Pets?

Sophie Wirt is a freelance writer and product tester for The Spruce Pets. For this article, she consultedPatrick Carney, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (SAIM), assistant professor of community practiceat Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, regarding what to look for when shopping for a probiotic for dogs and whether probiotics made for dogs are substantially supported by scientific evidence.

A previous version of this article was written byErica Puisis, a freelance writer who has contributed to The Spruce since 2017. To make this list, she considered each pick's recommended age, type, and use.

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