Dogs Have Similar Gut Bacteria as Humans.
It has been published in the journal Microbiome that our “gut” bacteria are like that of dogs. This may be why dogs and humans can have problems with weight loss.
It seems that dogs might be a better study in the laboratory for human nutrition than pigs or mice when it comes to the microbiome. Pigs and mice have been compared with canines and humans in the study of the gut. It has been found that the microorganisms living in the digestive tract of canines are more like ours than those in pigs or mice.
Luis Pedro Coelho says the dog microbiome “has some of the same species (of bacteria), as the humans,” “but different strains.” They expected that dogs would share a few of the same strains as their owners. But they are closely related.
At the European Molecular Biology Lab, along with Nestle Purina Research, they worked with Beagles and Labs. Half of each breed was overweight, and half were a normal weight. For four weeks they fed them all the same diet and gathered poop samples. Following that, they divided the dogs into 2 groups, selected randomly. One group ate only a high-protein, low-carb diet. The other at a low-protein, high-carb diet. This went on for another four weeks and gathered poop samples again.
The DNA was checked from each in order to see what kinds of microbes resided in their GI tract. The dog with a healthy weight had very little change in the microbiome. The overweight dogs had a more significant change.
We domesticated dogs early. They shared the same food with humans much of the time. That would tend to be the reason why dogs would have similar digestive systems to us today. This should prompt dog food makers to produce food that promotes better digestive health. Knowing this might allow us to do more research regarding human nutrition, by using canines. It is a lot easier to control a dog’s diet than a human and study their response to certain diets.
Even though we do not know how dogs and human’s microbiome became similar. The benefits are more than just a warm fuzzy cuddle friend that you can play ball with.