Diarrhea in dogs can have many causes: stress, changes in diet, parasites, tumors and inflammation of the small and large intestine. While vets often prescribe medicines like antibiotics and corticosteroids, an amino acid called L-glutamine, which is a natural therapy, also can help cure diarrhea and ease the digestive tract.
L-glutamine, derived from glutamic acid, is found in high-protein foods such as meat, fish, dairy products and beans. A deficiency in L-glutamine can affect the digestive tract, immune system and muscle cells. If a dog has diarrhea, as in the case of chronic inflammatory bowel disease, he may need an increase in L-glutamine to help replace cells that line the intestinal tract. Dogs who exercise a lot also may require L-glutamine to help replace muscle cells.
A naturally occurring amino acid in the body, L-glutamine is considered to be a safe supplement for dogs when taken at recommended dosages. However, dogs who take anti-epilepsy drugs, which work by blocking glutamate stimulation in the brain, should not take L-glutamine, unless the dog is under the care of a veterinarian. For digestive issues, taking L-glutamine does not have an immediate affect, but gradually improves the condition during a period of weeks.
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