Terra Biota K9 Probiotic for Dogs

Terra Biota K9: Probiotic for Dogs

BioStar's K9 Terra Biota

BioStar’s K9 Terra Biota

Terra Biota K9 is a full-spectrum probiotic for dogs that combines and balances the ecological community of symbiotic microorganisms within the canine GI tract. This diverse community of microorganisms is known as the microbiome or microbiota. The entire microbiota of canines includes microorganisms of the skin, mouth, uro-genital tract and gastrointestinal tract.

Terra Biota K9 comprises a variety of strains of microorganisms, reflecting the diversity of the microorganism population in the GI tract, and is formulated with a potent per-serving rating of 1.5 billion CFUs (colony forming units). Each serving is micro-encapsulated to ensure viability and protect specific microorganisms from damage as they travel through the stomach.

Terra Biota K9 probiotic for dogs also contains: a synergistic mushroom blend for prebiotic support; the specific earth elements kaolin clay and calcium bentonite for mineral and alkalizing pH support; and the additional prebiotics MOS and FOS, along with a complement of Soil-Based Organisms — cultured probiotics found in healthy soils.

The Microbiota

Recent advances in molecular methods have shown that the canine gastrointestinal tract harbors a highly complex microbial ecosystem. The microorganisms in mammals outnumber mammalian cells by a factor of ten to one. For every mammalian cell there are ten resident microbes; in essence, humans, canines, felines, and equines are more microbe than mammal!

Molecular fingerprinting has demonstrated that every individual dog has a unique and stable microbial ecosystem. All dogs harbor similar bacterial groups but the microbiome of each animal differs substantially on a microorganism species/strain level. (1)

The microbiota is made up of microorganisms ranging from fungi, including yeasts and molds, to microorganisms from soil, to protozoa, bacteria, and archaea (non-bacterial single cell microorganisms). The microbiota also includes viruses, but future studies will require more detailed characterization for a better understanding of their contributions to gastrointestinal health and disease. (2)

Gastrointestinal Tract

The microbes that inhabit this part of the canine body play a critical role in nutritional, developmental, defensive, and physiologic processes of the host. Recent evidence also suggests a role gastrointestinal tract microbes play in metabolic phenotype and disease risk (obesity, metabolic syndrome) of the host. (3) Resident microbes play a key role in maintaining microbial homeostasis by preventing the colonization of pathogenic or non-residential microbes in the gastrointestinal tract. (4) Maintenance of a balanced microbial population is of critical importance to the health and well-being of dogs.

Oral cavity, stomach, small intestine, large intestine: The stomach of dogs contains a smaller number of microbes than the oral cavity because the acidic conditions of the stomach prevent the growth of most organisms.

Canine Gastrointestinal System

Canine Gastrointestinal System

The Decline in Microbiota

Soils that once contained a rich, diverse microbiota, have been reduced by chemical fertilizers, and the frequent application of pesticides and herbicides. For example, in the 1960s the beneficial bacteria L. reuteri was discovered inhabiting the GI tracts of 30-40% of the human population. Today it is found in 10-20% of the human population. (7)

Antibiotics: Scientists used to think that the microbial community was resilient enough to recover from antibiotic therapy. New studies show that the microbiota struggles to recover, especially from repeated assaults.

Preservatives: These work by killing bacteria in the food, and now are suspected to also kill bacteria in the body.

Antibiotic soaps and lotions: These can significantly reduce specific microbiota that inhabit the skin.

The Elements

The microbiota of canines is both complex and unique to each individual dog. However, there are some basic elements of the microbiota in all canines: the oral cavity and GI tract microorganisms, soil organisms, fungi, and yeasts. The predominant beneficial microorganism families that inhabit the GI tract include Bifidus, Lactobacillus (lactic acid bacteria) and Enterococcus species. Bifido bacteria and lactobacilli are known to directly inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria such as Clostridium difficile and Enterobacteriaceae. (8)

Polysaccharides in mushrooms (the fungi family) are prebiotics that can help to increase the number and or activity of the bifidobacteria and lactic acid bacteria. Prebiotics may also play a significant role in improving digestion, and enhancing mineral absorption.
Soil microoganisms (known as SBOs, or Soil Based Organisms) are found in healthy soils. Their role is to maintain a healthy biomass that supports the growth of animals and plants. The SBOs include fungi and yeasts. When dogs eat meat from animals that ate food grown on healthy, dynamic soil, they are gaining additional probiotic support for healthy colonization of GI tract microorganisms.

The Terra Biota K9 Difference

• Combines thirteen different microorganisms known to populate the GI tract of canines, at a combined strength of 1.5 billion CFUs per serving.
• These microorganisms include: E. Themophilus, B. Bifidum, L. Salivarius, B. Lactis, L. Acidophilus, B. Breve, L. Plantarum, B. Longum, L. Reuteri, L. Rhamnosus, L. Paracasei, B. Infantis.
• These microorganisms support colonization of healthy, beneficial bacteria starting in the oral cavity, and contintuing through the GI tract. Species commonly found in saliva samples include: L. salivarius, L. rhamnosus, and L. Patacasei. (12) The Bifidobacteria can be found in the oral cavity too, and studies suggest this comes from early exposure of the oral cavity to mother’s milk. (13) The Bifidobacteria species common to the oral cavity include: B. bifidum and B. Longum. (14)
• Since dental issues in dogs are quite common, specific support of the microbiota of the oral cavity is beneficial.
• Provides specific prebiotics MOS and FOS, which can support the growth of Bifidobacteria species — a microorganism that often diminishes in dogs as they age, as well as in dogs who are under stress. MOS has shown to increase nutrient digestibility and stool quality. Both MOS and FOS are cultured from the yeast Saccharomyces cereviae, thus enhancing the formula with the additional yeast element.
• Provides a prebiotic blend of certified organic mushrooms: Shitake, Cordyceps, Maitake, Reishi, Turkey Tail, Royal Sun, Lion’s Mane, King Trumpet, and Antrodia. These mushrooms provide 1-3, 1-6 beta-glucan , which has been studied and documented as a biological immunomodulator over the past 40 years. (9) (10) In vivo studies on beta-glucan responses to pathogen infections in animals have revealed increased microbial clearance and reduced mortality in lethally infected animals. (11)
• Supplies the alkalizing clays kaolin and calcium bentonite, which provide macro and micro-mineral co-factors for many biological processes including: structural, electrolyte and enzyme actions; energy production from food breakdown; nerve transmission; and muscle action.
• Includes SBOs (soil-based organisms), which are cultured versions of the beneficial fungi and yeasts found in healthy soils.

Choosing a Supplemental Probiotic for Dogs

There are many probiotic supplements on the market for canines. One of the critical aspects when assessing a probiotic formula is to look at the CFUs (Colony Forming Units), which is how live, viable cells are measured. Studies from various universities have highlighted that the CFU levels required for colonization of the canine GI tract need to be anywhere from one to five billion. Note that many probiotics on the market are only in the millions of CFUs per serving, so you will have to give multiple servings to achieve that required minimum of one billion. Companies that choose to use the scientific notation for recording CFUs may use: 1 x 10^6 (10 to the sixth power), which equals one million CFUs, or 1 x 10^9 (10 to the ninth power), which equals one billion CFUs. Also check the inactive ingredients, as often these products contain maltodextrins (corn sugar, GMO), and vegetable oils (GMO). Companies using organic oils will be GMO-free.

A happy result of using a high-quality probiotic for dogs

Feeding Directions

Terra Biota K9 probiotic for dogs is not fed per weight of the dog, but by how many CFUs are needed:

For maintenance 1 teaspoon per day. May be divided into smaller servings, fed twice or three times per day
For dogs with common health issues:
infection, allergies, GI tract-related challenges
1-2 teaspoons twice per day, or as directed by your veterinarian


For use as a dietary supplement only. This product is not intended to cure, prevent, diagnose, lessen, or mitigate any disease. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.

1.    JS. Shuchadolski; Intestinal microbiota of dogs and cats: a bigger world than we thought. (2011) Vet Clin Small Anim 41: 261-272
2.    Ibid
3.     DY. Kil, KS. Swanson. Companion Animals Symposium: Role of microbes in canine and feline health. Joint Annual Meeting, July 11-15, 2010, Denver, Colorado
4.    Ibid
5.    Ibid
6.    CP. Davis, CD. Balish, et al. Bacterial association in the gastro intestinal tract of beagle dogs. 1977 Appl. Environ. Microbiol 34: 194-206
7.    Lactobacillus Reuteri good for health, Swedish study finds. 2010. Science Daily. Aug 18, 2013 (http://www.sciencedaily.com)
8.    R. Palframan, et al. Development of a quantitative tool for comparison of prebiotic effect of dietary oligosaccharides. (2003)  Letters in Applied Microbiology, 37: 281-284
9.    V. Vetricka, J. Vetvickova. Effects of yeast derived beta-glucans on blood cholestrol and macrophage functionality of Glucans, blood cholestrol, and macrophage function. (2009)  Journal of Immunotoxicology, 6 (1):30-35
10.      D. Elkhoury, C. Cuda, et al. Beta Glucan: health benefits in obesity and metabolic syndrome. (2012) J Nutr. Metab: 851362
11.      G. Hetland, N. Ohno, et al. Protective effect of beta-glucan against systemic pneumoniae infection in mice. (2000)   FEMS Immunology and Medical Microbiology; 27 (2): 111-116
12.    C.Simark-Mattson, CG Emilson, et al. Lactobacillus-mediated interference of mutans streptococci in caries-free versus caries active subjects. 2007. Eur J Oral Sci; 115: 308-314
13.    S. Ahrne, S. Nobaek, et al. The normal lactobacillus flora of health rectal and oral mucosa. 1998. J Appl Microbiol; 85: 88-94
14.     J. Maukonen, J. Matto, et al. Intra-individual diversity and similarity of salivary and faecal microbiota. 2008. J Med Microbiol; 57 (Pt 2): 1560-1568


S. Hooda, Y. Minamoto, et al. Current state of knowledge: the canine gastrointestinal microbiome. (2012)  Anim Health Res Rev. Jun; 13 (1): 78-88

JM. Simpson, B. Martineau, et al. Characterization of fecal bacterial populations in canines: effects of age, breed, and dietary fiber. (2002)  Microb Ecol 4: 186-97

Y. Benno, H. Nakao, et al. Impact of the advances in age on the gastro intestinal microflora of beagle dogs. (1992) J Vet Med Sci, 54: 703-706

M. Reichstein, M. Bahn, et al. Climate extremes and the carbon cycle. (2013) Nature, volume 500, august 15; 287-295

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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