Do Boston Terriers fart a lot and can it be reduced

Before we bought our two Boston Terriers, we had come across discussions about Boston Terrier farts being a common issue. We assumed it was blown out of proportion. What we learned after our Boston Terriers got comfortable in our home was that the rumors of their gas issues may have had a little truth behind them.

As a loving dog owner, it is natural to be concerned when anything is out of the ordinary, including flatulence. Boston Terriers and other brachycephalic dogs (dogs with shortened snouts or flattened faces) and notably fart more than other breeds, but there are things you can do to reduce it.  

If you are a fellow Boston Terrier owner we have some tips to help one of the best dog breeds in the world, stink a little less. On the other hand, if you are considering bringing a Boson Terrier into your home there are some things you should know. Read on if you would like to learn a little more about a dog breed we all love or will love.

Understanding the Anatomical Causes of Flatulence in Boston Terriers

Boston Terriers, often discussed for their frequent farts, are known for their distinctive short snouts and are classified as a brachycephalic breed. This term refers to their flat and wide skull shape, a characteristic that, while endearing, comes with its own set of challenges. One such challenge is an increased tendency for flatulence.

The brachycephalic nature of Boston Terriers affects their eating habits. Due to their compact facial structure, they tend to gulp down their food along with a significant amount of air. This process, known as aerophagia, is a primary contributor to gas build-up in their digestive system.

Moreover, the compactness doesn’t just end with their facial structure. Boston Terriers have relatively shorter gastrointestinal tracts, which can sometimes lead to quicker food processing. This rapid digestion process might not always allow for the complete breakdown of food, contributing further to the production of gas. Additionally, their unique anatomy can sometimes lead to sensitivities towards certain types of food, exacerbating the issue of flatulence.

If you want to learn more about the unique anatomical features of Boston Terriers and how they influence their health and behavior, check out the detailed information provided by the American Kennel Club.

Comprehensive Dietary Strategies for Reducing Flatulence in Boston Terriers

Effectively managing your Boston Terrier’s diet is key to reducing the often-talked-about Boston Terrier farts. Boston Terriers are known for their sensitive stomachs, and certain foods can aggravate this condition. Here are some guidelines to consider:

  1. Life Stage Appropriate Diet: Boston Terriers’ dietary needs change as they grow. Puppies require diets rich in calories and nutrients, adults need balanced diets for maintaining health, and senior dogs benefit from low-calorie diets to maintain a healthy weight​​​​​​.
  2. High-Quality Dog Food Brands: Opt for reputable dog food brands that have undergone extensive testing and quality control. Brands like Purina, Iams, Royal Canin, or Hill’s are typically recommended by veterinarians​​.
  3. Dry Vs. Wet Food: Choose between dry kibble and wet food based on your dog’s preference and health needs. Dry kibble can be more affordable and help with dental health, while wet food is beneficial for dogs with dental issues or those who prefer its texture and moisture content​​​​.
  4. Special Diets for Health Conditions: If your Boston Terrier has specific health issues, such as kidney disease or diabetes, consult your vet for a specialized diet that can help manage these conditions​​.
  5. Individual Preferences: Pay attention to what your dog enjoys eating. A diet that your Boston Terrier likes and is enthusiastic about can contribute to their overall well-being​​.
  6. Consultation with a Veterinary Nutritionist: For personalized dietary plans, especially if you’re considering home-cooked meals, a consultation with a veterinary nutritionist is advisable. They can guide you in formulating a diet that meets all your Boston Terrier’s nutritional needs​​.
  7. Understanding Dog Food Labels: Learn to read dog food labels correctly. Look for the AAFCO Feeding Statement and be wary of marketing-focused ingredient lists that may not provide real nutritional value​​.

For more detailed information on Boston Terrier diet and nutrition, check out these resources:

The Role of Exercise and Health in Reducing Flatulence in Boston Terriers

In addition to diet, addressing exercise and overall health is essential in managing Boston Terrier farts. Regular physical activity is essential not just for their physical well-being, but also for aiding digestion and reducing gas:

  1. Regular Exercise: Regular walks, play sessions, and engaging activities help stimulate digestion and promote gut motility, which in turn can reduce gas accumulation. An active Boston Terrier is less likely to suffer from severe flatulence issues.
  2. Health Check-ups: Regular veterinary check-ups can help identify and manage any underlying health conditions that might be contributing to excessive flatulence. Issues such as gastrointestinal disorders or food sensitivities can exacerbate gas problems, so it’s essential to keep a close eye on your pet’s overall health.
  3. Weight Management: Maintaining a healthy weight is crucial. Overweight Boston Terriers may experience more digestive and respiratory issues, which can lead to increased flatulence. Regular exercise coupled with a proper diet helps keep your Boston Terrier in good shape.
  4. Stress Management: Just like in humans, stress can affect a dog’s digestive system. Ensure your Boston Terrier has a calm environment, regular routines, and plenty of affection to keep stress levels low.

For more information on the importance of exercise and health for Boston Terriers, consider reading:

Why my Boston Terrier farts a lot

Their skull shape is a major reason for their gas. Their skulls are shorter and wider, which changes how their food is digested. Their short noses also cause them to swallow more air while eating. These features, therefore, lead to more gas, which means there is only so much you can do about it. If your Boston terrier farts a lot, this is likely not a health issue so don’t panic. It is nothing more than an annoyance that is part of the nature of the dog. Things you can do include: 

  • Changing your dog’s diet 
  • Giving him or her exercise 
  • Watching for anything out of the norm 
jojo the Boston Terrier trying to look like he did nothing wrong

Curtailing Flatulence Through Diet 

Gas is made in the digestive system by bacteria that ferment food. Your dog’s body gets accustomed to the types of food you regularly feed it, so changing its diet may temporarily cause gas. A diet with a lot of carbohydrates will also lead to more flatulence because it is harder for your dog’s body to digest them. They may also change your dog’s stools.  

Moreover, it is possible that your dog may have allergies. Many dogs are sensitive to grains, so switching to something with higher meat content may help. Soy products and beans tend not to be digestible to dogs, so they too may lead to more gas. Be mindful of the ingredients in any human food you give your dog because some of it can contribute to the problem.  

Apart from these factors, your dog is unique, so you need to pay attention to what does and does not work for it. You can temporarily give your dog a “bland diet” to help ease his or her stomach. Such a diet should consist of foods low in fat but high in soluble fiber.

The purpose of a bland diet is to feed your dog easily digestible foods such as pumpkin, chicken breasts, and sweet potatoes. Rice and beef are harder for dogs to digest and should be avoided on a bland diet. Bland diets should only be done for short timeframes. Afterward, you will switch your dog to a long-term diet.  

In the long run, probiotics and enzymes can help with digestion. You should talk to your veterinarian about which probiotics to use because some dogs cannot tolerate certain ones such as those derived from milk. Enzymes can vary in strength and type. 

Within their long-term diet, there are foods that are great for humans but not so great for the Boston Terrier. Foods with non-absorbable sugars and fermentable fibers are bad choices for gassy dogs. They do not have the needed enzymes for certain large sugars and fibers. These will include peas, fruit, and beans.

image of milk dripping

Foods containing lactose like milk and yogurt are also bad ideas. Other foods that make dogs gassy are cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and spices. Onions, in particular, are toxic to dogs. Once your dog is off its bland diet, rice is the best carbohydrate for it because it is highly digestible.  

Changes in the diet must be gradual, not sudden. You may mix some of the old food with the new for a few days. Start with a larger percentage of the old, then slowly increase the amount of the new. Sudden dietary changes can be the reason your dog has an upset stomach. 

Remember to Maintain Your Dog’s Overall Health 

Flatulence problems can be a sign of your dog’s overall health. Regular exercise with your dog should be part of your routine, and the benefits of exercise go beyond maintaining a healthy weight. It helps your dog’s cardiovascular system as well as its GI tract. Your dog will be able to better digest food and avoid chronic health problems such as obesity. The exercise doesn’t always have to be intense to get a benefit. Switch up your routine to keep your dog happy. 

It is recommended that Boston Terrier dogs receive 30 to 60 minutes of exercise a day. Use your own judgment regarding the amount of exercise your dog needs but remember this breed often causes mischief when it is not active enough. Exercise is best when broken up into smaller intervals because this breed’s nose makes it harder for it to breathe.

For the same reason, Boston Terriers are not the best running dogs.  In the summer months, you have to be mindful of hot, humid weather. These dogs do not regulate their body temperatures as well as other dogs, causing them to overheat easily. This is partially due to the shape of their heads, which makes it hard for them to pant enough to cool down.

If you are in a hot climate, you will need to be mindful of how hot your house gets. As you give your dog its daily dose of exercise, watch for fatigue and give it frequent breaks. The occasional jog is fine but not the marathon run. You can try swimming, fetch, and tug-a-war. Just be creative and don’t overdo it. 

Because health conditions can lead to flatulence, it is possible you may have to rule out possible illnesses. This will mean consulting your vet, especially if you’ve noticed any changes. Do not try to self-diagnose your dog. Self-diagnosing can waste your time on a problem your dog doesn’t have while the real problem gets worse. Possible health problems can be: 

  • Gastrointestinal disease 
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) 
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS):  
  • Parasites 
  • Pancreatitis 
  • Cancer 

The list sounds scary but don’t panic. There may not be anything wrong with your dog at all. You won’t know unless you go to the vet. Whatever you do needs to be consistent, so you can take note of anything outside the norm. 

Natural Remedies 

Outside of probiotics and enzymes, there are other natural remedies to help. Peppermint and ginger are good in small doses. Peppermint can be added to dog food by mixing in a few bits of leaves or as tea poured over it. You can also mix diluted peppermint oil with ginger. Watch your dog carefully, since too much peppermint can be toxic. This remedy is good for easing an upset stomach. 

As for ginger, the benefit of giving it to your dog is its anti-inflammatory properties. It is safe for dogs in small doses. The antioxidants it has can help with gastrointestinal issues, bloating, nausea, and motion sickness. Talk to a specialist to determine the appropriate doses.  

Other Solutions for Gas 

There are other small things that can make a difference. One way is to change how you give your furry friend its food, so they won’t swallow as much air. Dogs that eat fast will naturally swallow more air and have more gas thereafter.

You can give them their food in a slow feeder bowl or a puzzle toy. The environment they eat in plays a role as well. Noise or anything else distracting can encourage the dog to eat faster, since they may feel they need to compete with other dogs or people.  

Watching your dog’s pooping patterns is also a must. If your dog is holding its bladder a lot, it is going to be more prone to flatulence. On your next day off, you can give your dog free access to the backyard and adjust its bathroom schedule accordingly. They may have to go more often than you think. 

dog poop and stinking image on sidewalk

Other Things to Know about Boston Terriers 

Boston Terriers or the “American Gentlemen” originated in America and are typically happy and friendly towards people. They are known as child-friendly dogs who get along well with other pets. They are short dogs with a lifespan between 11 to 13 years and can weigh up to 25 pounds. Because these dogs have short hair, grooming is easy if done on a weekly basis.  

Like other dog breeds, the Boston Terrier is more prone to certain health problems. Higher genetic tendencies do not mean your dog will get them but knowing about them can help you cater to their needs. Like other dog owners, you want your dog to look and feel its best, which means knowing what to look out for. 

Dental disease is one of those things. Although it is a very common problem among house pets, the Boston Terrier has a higher tendency towards it than other dogs. It starts with tartar buildup and progresses into an infection. Ugly rotting teeth aren’t the end of it though.

Bad oral health leads to other health problems such as damage to joints, kidneys, the heart, and the liver. That’s right. The reason for your dog’s illness could literally be right under its nose! Get the dog’s teeth cleaned regularly to stop this from happening to your beloved friend. 

Additionally, this breed has a higher tendency to develop eye problems. Neglecting to treat this can ruin your dog’s quality of life because they can go blind. In older dogs, cataracts are common. The vet will look at the dog’s lenses to see if they are cloudy. Oftentimes, this is resolved through surgery. 

Glaucoma is another eye condition leading to blindness. Watch out for squinting, watery eyes, bluing of the cornea, and redness. Glaucoma is painful and affects people too. If you see signs of this condition, go to an emergency clinic as this is a medical emergency.  

Dry eye is also common in Boston Terriers. It’s painful and works by lowering the amount of liquid made by the tear glands, so they are no longer keeping the eyes moist. The eyes can become sore, itchy, and infected. Symptoms include having a dull, dry appearance, a thick discharge from the eyes, or squinting and pawing at the eyes. This would be a condition you would never want to wait to get tested. 

The fact that the Boston Terrier’s eyes protrude makes it more susceptible to injuries. Scrapes and punctures to the cornea are the most common ones. Letting your dog stick its head out the window of a vehicle is a common culprit for eye injuries. Eye injuries easily become infected and affect vision. It might be best to keep your car window closed. 

Bone and joint problems are often reported among Boston Terriers. The dog’s kneecap might slip out of place, changing the way it runs. It could also develop hip dysplasia which causes the hip joints to improperly form, which can eventually lead to arthritis.

This can make it hard for the dog to get up after lying down. The problem is genetic, so catching it early is the best course of action for treatment. Its chances of getting arthritis will be higher if it’s overweight. For all of these health problems, the best thing you can do is give your dog a healthy diet and exercise regimen and pay attention to anything outside the norm. Other possible health problems include: 

  • Deafness 
  • Epilepsy 
  • Reproductive problems 
  • Heart disease 
  • Spinal deformities 
  • Hair loss 


The question of whether Boston Terriers fart a lot is common, and yes, they do, but understanding and managing it is key. It is simply the nature of the breed. At the same time, there are things you can do to reduce gas such as feeding your dog well, giving it exercise, and monitoring your dog’s health. Complex carbohydrates, table scraps, and allergies are all known culprits of flatulence that dog owners don’t consider.

Certain health issues are genetic but taking good care of your dog will naturally mitigate them and give your dog a long healthy life. The next time you are annoyed at your dog’s gas, you can remember that Boston Terriers are wonderful dogs that will give you company for years to come.  

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