Ah, the power of enzymes for dogs.They help
break down debris in the intestinal tract, heal mucus membranes, reduce pain and inflammation without drugs or side effects. But do you know...
Wait a minute. What the heck are enzymes anyway?
Special proteins manufactured by living things that
either form or break down chemical substances without changing themselves. And heat kills enzymes.
Internally, our dogs need enzymes to break down and metabolize food and externally enzymes can clean, deodorize, heal wounds, and help heal many internal health problems as well. Arthritis is one example. Good grief, they can even take a stain out of a carpet or unclog a drain.
There are many enzymes, each with their own specialty. Collectively they break down, proteins, fats and carbohydrates, including sugars and fiber.
We are actually born with enzymes, some of which we can manufacture ourselves while others become depleted and are never replenished.
As an example, do you know anyone who used to eat beans without a problem but now gets gas unless they take the product "Beano"?
Guess what Beano's main ingredient is? Yup, the enzyme we
need for the digestion of beans!
That brings to mind if you suffer from your dogs flatulence (he's not too comfy about it either) he's either short on enzymes, probiotics or both.
Enzymes in Food
There are lots of enzymes in food itself that help dog digestion. The problem is cooking KILLS enzymes! The more dog food is cooked, the less there are. We can safely assume then that highly processed commercial dog food does not contain any.
Even if they added enzymes afterwards, they would likely die in storage since even a warm car can kill them.
But which one? There are many choices out there but my personal recommendation is from Nature's Sunshine. (I know, big surprise huh?) Since we all need the same enzymes, buying human grade allows us to share.
Heck we share the bed, the car and some of our better foods so why not supplements as well?
You should see me before meals when I take out the supplements. "Here's one for me and one for you..."
And now more than ever, we all need enzymes since even fresh foods are void of them.
The Enzymes in Food Test
I have no idea how many of our foods are void of enzymes, but here's a test I did by accident.
Thinking I was being very health conscious I was buying bottled juice that had no sugar or preservatives in it. It even said "keep refrigerated" on the label.
Then the refrigerator went out. That juice sat on the counter for a week because that's how long it took me to drink it and it never went bad. Yet I know if I make home made orange juice, I only have a few days to drink it if it stays in the fridge and only hours if its on the counter. Talk about disappointment!
What that means is: foods spoil because of the actions of enzymes within that food. By killing off those enzymes our food now has a shelf life of several months instead of several days. Good for shelf life, bad for digestion and nutrition.
More Good News About Enzymes for Dogs
You didn't think I was going to talk about just dog digestion did you? Enzymes have many other functions as well.
The other essential functions throughout the body are less talked about but they are extremely important. Enzymes for dogs promote systemic as well as digestive health.
Here is a partial list of benefits:
Now I want to share something about enzymes that made me laugh. Have you ever bought enzymatic cleaners? I have and they didn't impress me much. Probably because they do not have enough enzymes in them.
Here's a link to a PDF download about enzymes that left me with my mouth hanging open. See, I keep saying I learn new stuff every day!
Now I know one that does and Natures Fresh Enzyme Spray is a topical use of enzymes for dogs. Not just as a deodorizer or stain remover but to actually spray on your dog to reduce swelling, help arthritis pain, speed recovery from bites, stings or any skin problems. You can even use it for acne.
How can spraying the outside help the inside? The skin is an organ silly. It absorbs whatever you put on it. (Think about that when you use bug spray!)
Is that a hoot or what? Now I know why a friend of mine keeps two or three bottles on hand all the time. Not because she's a clean freak but because she has four dogs and four cats.
I think I'm done sounding like a commercial now. If you're new here, it's because after quite awhile, I finally found a great supplement company. Feel free to read Why NSP (the link below) so you understand my choice.
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Veterinarians tend to dismiss the importance of enzymes for dogs (along with probiotics and prebiotics) and continue to give our dogs drugs and antibiotics that deplete the system. Then we mess up the rest by feeding the standard commercial dog food diet.
I just thought of something. If you want to purchase both enzyme products, here's how to get a discount. Notice the retail and discount price difference? If you order 2 bottles of spray and one bottle of food enzymes, it's actually cheaper than one of each. I explain how to get the discount at Why NSP.