A Pet Dog May Shield Children from Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease is a form of inflammatory bowel disease characterized by inflammation in the digestive tract that can result in abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, and malnutrition. An analysis of data on nearly 4,300 people enrolled in the Crohn’s and Colitis Canada Genetic, Environmental, and Microbial project found that having a family dog during childhood is associated with a healthier gut microbiome later in life. Senior author Dr. Williams Turpin notes, “Our study seems to add to others that have explored the ‘hygiene hypothesis,’ which suggests that the lack of exposure to microbes early in life may lead to lack of immune regulation toward environmental microbes.” American Gastroenterological Association, May 2022

Leave a Comment