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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 32871
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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is it safe to give a british bulldog 34kgs in weight charcoal

Customer Question

is it safe to give a british bulldog 34kgs in weight charcoal granules to help with a very bad flatulance problem? If so how much with each meal. He is fed Hills R/D morning and evening.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 3 years ago.
Aloha! You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin
Yes, activated charcoal can be dosed at 1-4 grams/kg daily divided into Sidney's meals but there are conflicting studies concerning the efficacy of charcoal for controlling flatulance. In one human study activated charcoal did not produce reduction in both the total flatus volume nor the release of sulphur-containing gasses, and there was no reduction in abdominal symptoms after 0.52g activated charcoal four times a day for 1 week. The authors of that study suggested that saturation of charcoal binding sites during its passage through the gut was the reason for this. Another human study concluded that activated charcoal (4g daily) does not influence gas formation in vitro or in vivo.

Other authors reported that activated charcoal was effective. A study in 8 dogs concluded activated charcoal (unknown oral dose) reduced H2S (hydrogen sulfide gas) by 71%. In combination with yucca schidigera, and zinc acetate, this was increased to an 86% H2S reduction, although total flatus volume and number of flatus events was unchanged. An earlier dog study reported activated charcoal (unknown oral dose) prevented a large increase in the number of flatus events and increased breath hydrogen concentrations that normally occur following a gas-producing meal.

In any event, dosing Sidney as mentioned initially should be safe but might bind any medications he's currently being given.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.