Research Report, October 22, 2015
Probiotics are of increasing interest to food and feed manufacturers because of the health benefits to animals as well as humans. Probiotic premixes are added topically to pet foods after the formula is passed through heat processing because such processing would kill the probiotic microbes. It is important, therefore, to be sure that the probiotic premix on the surface of the pet food does not decrease its palatability.
To study the effect of topical Log10® probiotic premix (Pre-Liminate™) application on the palatability of a commercial dog food kibble.
Untreated kibble vs. the same kibble treated with probiotic premix.
Acceptance behavior and daily consumption by dogs.
20 dogs, two consecutive days.
- The Pre-Liminate™ product used was Formula D3.1, consisting of commercial food-grade corn starch, dried fermentation products (Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium spp.), and silicon dioxide (flow agent).
- Dried commercial dog kibble was obtained from a major manufacturer. Kibble was treated with Pre-Liminate™ at the rate of 0.04 lb. to treat 40 lb. of kibble. Kibble and premix were mixed in a 3.5 cubic foot polyethylene rotating cement mixer fitted with a cover having a small opening for adding the premix during mixing. Total mixing time was 10 minutes.
- Samples of the untreated and treated kibbles were tested for the presence of the probiotic microorganisms.
- Untreated and treated kibbles were fed simultaneously to 20 dogs in a commercial kennel. The dogs weighed an average of 55 lb. Each dog was offered 1.8 lb. of each type of kibble simultaneously in different bowls for each of two consecutive days. Bowl position was inverted on the second day to account for possible position bias.
- Data were recorded for each dog each day, as follows:
- The first type of kibble approached.
- The first type of kibble consumed.
- Daily consumption of each type of kibble.
Table 1. Effect of treating dog food with Pre-Liminate™ on palatability.
(Average daily consumption by individual dogs, pounds per day)
Treatment with Probiotica
aThere were no statistically significant differences between treatments.
- Treated kibble samples tested by standard methods in the Log10® laboratory had 9 million cfu/g of Lactobacillus and 7 million cfu/g of Bifidobacterium for a total of 16 million cfu/g. The total activity was equivalent to 16 billion cfu/kg and 7 billion cfu/lb. Back-calculating from those numbers indicated that the rate of premix application was approximately 0.05%. This rate exceeds the rate of .002 to .004% recommended by Log10® for the premix used in this study.
- The dogs showed no difference between untreated and treated kibble in any response variable.
- Kibble treated with probiotic premix was approached and consumed first on 21 of the 40 observations.
- Average daily consumption of untreated and treated kibble is shown in Table 1. These data were analyzed statistically, and there was no difference.
Topical treatment of commercial dog food kibble with a probiotic premix at a rate greater than recommended had no effect on the palatability of the kibble when tested on 20 dogs. There was no difference in the first approach, first consumption, or daily intake between treated and untreated kibble. PreLiminate™ Formula D3.1 may be applied topically in manufacturing dog food kibble without concern about a negative effect on the palatability of the dog food.
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