Digestive Enzymes for Dogs and Cats

Digestive Enzymes for Dogs and Cats

Supplementing with digestive enzymes enhances the health and well being fo your canine and feline companion in many crucial ways.  Hippocrates said “man is not nourished by what he swallows, but by what he digests and uses.”  The same is true of our pets!

Enzymes are proteins found either within cells or dissolved in body fluids.  They serve as biological catalysts, reducing the amount of energy required for chemical reactions and controlling metabolic reactions that would otherwise either not take place, or occur very slowly, under normal physiological conditions.  The body’s entire metabolic process is based on the activation, inhibition and control of enzymes.

Part of the job of the pancreas is the aid in digestion.  Most don’t even realize the pancreas secretes digestive enzymes other than insulin.  These include amylase, lipase and proteases.  The proteases are responsible for the bulk of protein digestion.  The two proteases are krypton and chymotrypsin.

The pancreas secretes a magnificent battery of enzymes that collectively have the capacity to reduce virtually all digestive macromolecules into forms that are capable of or nearly capable of being absorbed.

Things that interfere with food/nutrient absorption:

  • antibiotics/medications can change the gut and its natural ability to use it’s own enzymes to absorb nutrients.
  • Age:  as we and our pets age there is a reduction in our pancreatic enzymes.
  • Stress:  haven’t we all had “the nervous stomach” because we are anxious, worried or depressed?
  • Pancreatic diseases such as pancreatitis, and exocrine pancreatic insufficiency.

These enzymes can be supplemented when needed.  Just don’t add these to your pet’s diet without talking to Dr. Flanders.  Adding these when not needed can be damaging to your pet’s system.  Blood tests as well as full medical and dietary histories will be needed to see if supplementation is needed.

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