Probiotics are Good for Animals

Scientific Studies

    In a study conducted at the University of Nebraska, researchers examined the effect Lactobacillus acidophilus had on the dreaded Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria.
        For this study, 432 feed-lot cattle were divided into two groups.
        The first group received just the regular feed and the second group ingested feed with Probiotics Are Good for Animalsbacteria added to it.
        Feed with L. acidophilus added resulted in a 61 per cent reduction in E. coli found in cattle’s manure.

    Researchers concluded that this significant reduction confirmed the probiotics effectiveness.

    In smaller study conducted at Texas Tech University researchers observed a 80 per cent reduction in E. coli for calves receiving L. acidophilus.

    A study published in American Journal of Veterinary Research examined the effect of adding L. acidophilus to the diet of healthy cats.
    For this study, fifteen adult cats were fed nutritionally balanced dry food for five weeks.
    Blood and fecal samples were collected for hematologic and bacterial enumeration analysis.
    For the next 4.5 weeks, the cats were fed the same dry food diet supplemented with L. acidophilus.
    Multiple blood and fecal samples were taken during this phase.
    For the next four weeks, the cats received the normal dry food diet without L. acidophilus.

At the end of the study, researchers observed the following:

  •         an increase in the amount of beneficial bacteria and a decrease in the dangerous Clostridium and   Enterococcus faecalis bacterial indicating a positive change in the intestinal flora,
  •         proof that the L. acidophilus survive the feline gastrointestinal tract,
  •         enhanced immune system function when L. acidophilus was included in the diet        .

    In a 2006 study published in International Journal of Food Microbiology the immune enhancing properties of L. acidophilus and L. paracasei were examined. For this study, mice received orally either L. acidophilus or L. paracasei bacteria for fourteen days.

    At the end of the study, changes in immunoglobulin A, interleukin-10, and interferon gamma producing cells in the intestinal immune system were compared with those taken at the start of the study.

    Researchers observed a beneficial increase in the number of immune producing cells due to the addition of these probiotic bacteria to the mice’s diet.

    In research conducted at the Oklahoma State University Department of Animal Science, researchers observed that L. acidophilus helped control serum cholesterol. The L. acidophilus feeds on the cholesterol in the intestinal tract. Thus, less cholesterol is available for absorption into the blood stream.


Gilliland Stan. “Bacteria Reduce Serum Cholesterol.” Oklahoma State University.

Marshall-Jones Z.V., Baillon M.L., Croft J.M., Butterwick R.F., “Effects of Lactobacillus acidophilus DSM13241 as a probiotic in healthy adult cats.” American Journal of Veterinary Research (67-6, pg. 1005-12): American Veterinary Medical Association: Illinois; June 2006.

Miller Vicki. “Good bacteria look promising for reducing E. coli.” University of Nebraska – Lincoln Agricultural Research Division September 2002.

Paturi G., Phillips M., Jones M., Kailasapathy K. “Immune enhancing effects of Lactobacillus acidophilus LAFTI L10 and Lactobacillus paracasei LAFTI L26 in mice.” International Journal of Food Microbiology: Elsevier: New York; November 2006.

Younts-Dahl S.M., Osborn G.D., Gaylyean M.L., Rivera J.D., Loneragan G.H., Brashears M.M. “Reduction of Escherichia coli O157 in finishing beef cattle by various doses of Lactobacillus acidophilus in direct-fed microbials.” Journal of Food Protection (68-1, pg. 6-10): International Association for Food Protection: Iowa; January 2005.

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