Good bacteria is necessary to create and maintain a thriving digestive system.
Often referred to as the universal mammalian milk, goat milk is now gaining popularity in the US – for both people and our pets. Goat milk – not cow milk – is actually the most consumed milk in the world. The benefits to your dog can seem miraculous. Here is why:
The gut is inhabited by numerous microbes that form a widely diverse and immensely active ecological community. A well-balanced and harmonious relationship between the host (dog) and intestinal microbes, driven by the diet, is of great importance to protect your dog’s health and prevent obesity, inflammatory diseases, neurological disorders, and metabolic syndrome.
Fermented raw goat milk intake can have extremely beneficial effects on small intestinal microbiota and further modulate a dog’s metabolism and immune responses. For this reason, fermented raw goat milk can serve as an alternative functional food to improve health through gut bacterial management in dogs with compromised gut health issues.
The digestive tract is the lone barrier between the food and medicines taken orally and the circulatory system. Poor food quality, over-medication, toxins and stress can all create a weak gut lining, allowing food particles to pass through the intestinal lining and flow unfettered in the bloodstream. These “bad actors” can present as problems ranging from allergies to digestive issues, autoimmune deficits to arthritis. This condition is known as “Leaky Gut” (Dysbiosis*). Fermented raw goat milk absorbed into the digestive system allows the digestive tract to heal while purging the toxins causing the inflammation. This process takes at least 30 days, and in some cases even longer. Some studies have even suggested that fermented raw goat milk is a trigger-mechanism for stem cells within the body to aid in healing of past injuries and inflammations as well.
Goat milk contains vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, trace elements, enzymes, protein, and fatty acids. In comparison with cow milk, goat milk presents a better digestibility, higher mineral bioavailability, more balanced protein and fat profiles, goat milk is considered to be much closer in composition to breast milk than other sources of milk. In fact, the body can digest goat’s milk in 20 minutes. Having fat molecules one-fifth the size of those in cow’s milk makes it easily digestible and tolerable even for dogs with digestive issues. Raw goat milk is a source of easily digested probiotics that can help with many chronic diseases, including:
• Liver disease
• Heavy metal poisoning
• Kidney disease
• Kidney stones
• GI disease
• Poor digestion
• Systemic yeast
• Idiopathic scratching/self-mutilating
• Chronic urinary tract infections
• Chronic regurgitation
Fermenting goat milk adds another layer of nutritional value.
The fermentation process adds more probiotics which metabolize the lactose in milk and combine with its other nutrients to create the above health-supporting compounds. Although fermented milk and dairy foods have been consumed for thousands of years, we’ve only recently begun to understand their benefits in fighting modern chronic illnesses such as arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, gastric ulcers, colitis, intestinal pathogens and even brain disorders.
Fermented raw goat milk is particularly richer in peptides, amino acids, fatty acids and vitamins than the unfermented goat milk due to the bacterial fermentation. Fermented raw goat milk provides incredible bioavailability, allowing an adaptive function of the microflora in the small intestine, ensuring a vastly improved digestive tract. Fermented raw goat milk and blood plasma have the same nutrient profile. It takes 20 days for the blood to completely renew itself, and a minimum of 30 days is suggested on a raw goat milk diet.
While probiotic pills and powders provide between 1-20 different strains of probiotics, fermented raw goat’s milk provides over 200. These probiotics, in conjunction with essential enzymes minerals create the most optimum conditions for healthful benefit and successful survival and transmission beyond stomach acid decay.
Another reason for the success of fermented raw goat milk is the breakdown of biofilm. Biofilm is produced by the bad bacteria in the gut to protect itself from good bacteria and antibiotics. Biofilm consists of protein and minerals which are very difficult to remove and can prevent absorption of nutrients and contribute to heart disease. Large amounts of raw goat milk can break down the biofilm, giving the good bacteria the ability to kill off the bad bacteria, resting your dog’s own natural immune system and gut flora.
*For dogs with severe dysbiosis, we recommend the following for a minimum of 30 days:
• Fast pet for 24 hours. Offer water ONLY. This changes how the dog’s body makes energy and is an important step in improving their health. [Do NOT fast if pet is grossly underweight or diabetic.]
• Feed only goat milk and water. No other food, treats, edible chews, or table scraps are to be consumed during this time.
• Discontinue all supplements.
• If possible, discontinue all medications.
• Try to feed recommended amount of fermented raw goat milk in multiple small feedings throughout the day.
• Limit your dog’s activity during the milk diet. Healing takes energy.
What to expect:
• Pet will need to urinate more frequently.
• Stools will turn to a yellowish pudding-like consistency. – Some pets will only have this consistency for about 14 days, then begin to produce small, hard stool that they will only pass every 2-3 days. – Some pets will have this loose, yellow stool throughout the entire duration of the diet. Both of these conditions are completely normal.
• Passing mucus (biofilm) in the stool is common for the first 7-10 days.
• Borborgymi is a fancy name for rumbling stomach noises and is common and expected during the first two weeks of this diet. This is most likely to be accompanied with gassiness.
• If your dog acts overly hungry or becomes constipated, increase the amount of milk given.
• If the pet burps milk bubbles, throws up the milk, acts nauseous or passes undigested curds of the milk in their stool, reduce the amount of milk at each feeding.
• Your dog may experience symptoms of detoxification during this time and these symptoms are completely normal and will pass in about 14 days. They include runny eyes, ear discharge, skin eruptions, and lethargy (tiredness).
**This regimen should last for a minimum of 30 days for optimum results. Most conditions, if severe, may require an extended use of the diet.