How long does it take a dog to digest food ? When a dog eats their bodies need to process the foods to get nutrients. The dog and the human digestive system do have some similarities but there are some differences too.
Digestive Process in Dogs
The saliva in the dog’s mouth begins to break down the food. Dogs have more saliva than humans because they do not chew their food as well. The digestion in the dog begins in the stomach.
The stomach is designed to expand to take in large quantities of food at one time. The stomach has fibers in the walls which allows it to expand.
To the Small Intestines
The stomach contains high levels of acids so dogs can digest raw meat and even bones. Solid food is turned into chyme. This is composed of food, acid, and water. This chyme moves to the small intestines. This is where nutrients are removed from the food so that it can be used by the dog’s body.
The small intestines have a segment called the ileum where any remaining nutrients are removed and then absorbed by the body. The proteins and vitamins needed by the body are the very small container to the amount of dog food that is consumed.
This part of the digestive tract is small in size. It is around a foot long but this distance varies by the breed of dog and its size. The large intestine removed water for the now paste and compacts it. It is then turned into a solid which is known as stool. The dog will then have a bowel movement so that the stool can leave the body.
How Long Food Stays in the Stomach
Dogs are omnivores and their bodies can digest many substances. The small intestines are much longer and they can break down the food.
The duration of the digestion of food will vary based on what a dog eats. If they eat food that contains meats and vegetables it will take 12 hours to be broken down in the stomach.
Duration of Digestion
There is no set timeline and this can be affected by the health of the dog and its size. The amount of water the dog drinks can also have an impact. Large dog breeds will take a longer time to digest food than the smaller breeds.
Exercise plays an impact on digestion as well. if the dog is active they will digest the food faster than dogs that lay around. Wet dog food takes less time to digest than dry dog foods. A dog can fully process the wet foods in as little as four hours. The same amount of dry dog food can take their system up to eight hours to digest and process.
Food moves down the gi tract in a dog’s stomach. For dog owners digestion problems when stomach acid aids in dogs health.
Things That Can Affect Digestion
Some things will have an impact on the digestive system. if the dog is eating highly processed dog food digestion is going to be difficult. The dog will need to adapt to this food.
If a dog is not able to digest their food the owner should change their dog food. If the dog is on medication and having digestive issues they should call the vet and explain their concerns.
Exercise can also play a role in the digestive process. If the dog is not moving around enough add more exercise to their daily schedule. This can get their system moving.
The dog needs to be drinking water so be sure they have water in their bowls at all times. This will allow the digestive tract to have the water it needs to move the food along.
The dog digestive system does have some similarities to the human system. Their system does work in a slightly different way. The higher acid levels allow the dogs to eat all different types of foods even hard foods. The amount of time it takes a dog to digest will depend on several factors and their bodies are designed to take in more food in one sitting.