Brewer’s yeast is sometimes given as a supplement to dogs for health reasons. Sometimes the yeast is given to make a dog’s coat and skin healthier and more. However, is brewer’s yeast good for dogs? What happens if your dog eats brewer’s yeast?
What is Brewer’s Yeast?
Brewer’s yeast is made from a one-celled fungus that’s known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This yeast is a natural source of B-vitamins that work to keep the nervous system functioning properly and makes skin, hair, liver, and eyes healthy. The yeast comes in various forms, including pills, powdered, or tablets.
The supplement, when given in the right amounts, can be healthy for dogs. It can help soothe itchy skin, strengthen the immune system, and more.
But can brewer’s yeast cause problems for some dogs?
Brewer’s Yeast and Dogs
Yes, brewer’s yeast can cause health issues in some dogs:
Digestive tract issues: brewer’s yeast increases the amount of gas and fermentation in the stomach, which can lead to bloat in some dogs. This means the stomach can rapidly fill with gas and flip over on itself, which can lead to death. In addition, bloat can stop blood from the hind legs and abdomen from returning to the heart. Instead, the blood pools at the rear of the body, which can send a dog into shock.
Allergies: some low-quality brewer’s yeast supplements can contain by-products that can lead to an allergic reaction in sensitive dogs. If a dog has skin allergies, they have a higher chance of having an allergic reaction to brewer’s yeast.
Symptoms of Bloat in Dogs
You may notice these symptoms if your dog has developed bloat after ingesting brewer’s yeast:
- Enlarged abdomen
- Pain when the stomach is touched
If your dog is showing any of these symptoms, then call the vet immediately. This is a life-threatening medical emergency.
Treatment of Bloat in Dogs
First, the vet will start by treating your dog for shock. When stable, the dog will then need surgery. During the surgery, the stomach is deflated and put back into the correct position. Next, the stomach is then tacked to the abdominal wall to prevent this condition from developing again. Almost 90% of dogs who develop this condition can have it again; this is why the stomach is attached to the abdominal wall.
Treatment of Brewer’s Yeast Allergy in Dogs
If your dog has an allergic reaction to brewer’s yeast, the vet will treat him with antihistamines. Other medications may include corticosteroids, which work to reduce inflammation and swelling. If your dog has developed a skin infection from an allergic reaction, the vet will also prescribe antibiotics.
In most cases, dogs who receive prompt treatment for bloat can go on to a full recovery. The same goes for dogs who have an allergic reaction. However, for both bloat and allergies, there’s a higher risk of a second attack, so it’s imperative to avoid brewer’s yeast in the future.