Microbiome 101 (Why Probiotics Matter)

Probiotic Skin Care for Pets

There’s been a lot of buzz going on out there lately about the importance of a healthy “Microbiome.” But the truth is, most people have NO IDEA what that means.  We’re here to break it down for you and explain why this uber-trendy word is one that you need to familiarize yourself with.

Let’s start with the actual definition: Microbiome (Noun) 

mi·​cro·​bi·​ome | \ ˌmī-krō-ˈbī-ˌōm  \

  1. A community of microorganisms (such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses) that inhabit a particular environment and especially the collection of microorganisms living in or on the body.  

While that may sound gross or ‘dirty’ to some – the microbiome is actually our skin’s living, protective layer.  Not all bacteria is “bad” bacteria – in fact, we need “good” bacteria to thrive in and on our bodies in order to maintain a healthy life.  The skin microbiome is home to billions of bacteria at any given time – both good and bad.  When the balance of good and bad bacteria gets out of whack and the bad bacteria is given the opportunity to take over, we experience symptoms of inflammation, irritation and other health problems.  For the skin, these symptoms of a microbiome that is off-balance often appear as itch, odor, redness, dryness, etc.

Enter topical probiotics…

It has been proven that when applied to the skin, probiotics do an incredible job at supporting and strengthening the “good” bacteria on the skin so that it can more effectively defend against opportunistic pathogens and “bad” bacteria from taking over.  Probiotics are the ultimate protector, preventer and defender against our skin’s worst enemies (bad bacteria) – and when applied regularly can offer an effective, natural way to keep skin problems from occurring in the first place.

So it’s no surprise that the trend of Probiotic Skin Care has quickly evolved as one of the hottest, most innovative solutions in human beauty and skin care products to treat our most common skin problems: acne, rosacea, etc.  Check any beauty shelf or cosmetic counter at retail today and you’ll find a selection of items that claim probiotics as a key, active ingredient for balancing and restoring skin health.

So, since probiotics offer such a powerful solution for treating human skin care woes – just imagine the possibilities when it comes to using topical probiotics on our favorite furry family members (our pets)!  Just as we suffer from time to time from skin irritations and inflammation due to environmental factors, genetics, etc. – so do our pets.  Any pet parent can recall a moment when their dog or cat has gone crazy itching or scratching the same spot for  hours – and we all know how odor control can be a problem when it comes to a pet with ongoing skin irritations.  We want our pets to look, feel (and smell!) their best – and today’s pet parents are constantly seeking new opportunities to improve their dog or cat’s well being.

Our pet’s skin microbiome is just as sensitive as our own.  When the balance of good and bad bacteria gets off track, we start to see problems like hot spots, itching/licking, odor, shedding, dander and dryness.  Unfortunately the most common response to date has been a cycle of “treat and repeat” – using shampoos/topical treatments that temporarily relieve the presenting problem (oatmeal baths for itch, steroids for inflammation/redness, etc.).  The problem is that once those treatments wear off, the same underlying cause of the symptoms is still there – which is ultimately an imbalance in the pet’s skin microbiome.  Until the good bacteria on their skin is effectively restored and supported, pets suffering from recurring problems will never be cured.

At Skout’s Honor we are excited to offer a new solution for pet parents who have been on that treat-and-repeat cycle with their own animal(s).  We saw an exciting opportunity in the science behind topical probiotics and the results it has offered humans for transforming skin care/health.

Through the introduction of our Probiotic Skin Care line for pets – we’ve unleashed a game changer for the pet industry and the grooming category in particular.  Our Probiotic shampoos, conditioners and daily-use treatments are infused with a live probiotic kefir culture, which offers an incredibly hydrating, soothing and luxurious grooming experience – while providing a powerful boost of probiotics to the skin and coat.  That boost leaves the animal feeling clean, soft, shiny and smelling amazing.  Best of all, the probiotics that are left behind after the wash provide an active, preventative approach to skin health – helping support the good bacteria on the animal’s skin in order to keep the bad bacteria away.

Don’t take our word for it.  Since launching this innovative line, our Probiotic grooming products have received several industry awards and accolades from pet industry experts including Pet Age magazine, Pet Business Magazine, etc.  Every day we receive new testimonials and before/after images from pet parents, professional groomers and veterinarians who say that our products have been able to restore skin and coat health for animals who have long-suffered chronic skin problems.

We invite you to learn more about the Microbiome, Probiotic Skin Care Products for humans, and Skout’s Honor’s Probiotic Grooming line.

If you are interested in trying a sample of our grooming products for your own pet, click here to sign up for FREE sample kit! 

What is Dysbiosis? 5 Signs your Dog’s Skin Biome is out of Whack.

About half of your pet’s bodyweight is made up of microorganisms. No joke! While this may sound gross, it turns out that the bacteria, yeasts and fungus (commonly known as the microbiome) play a more critical role in the health and well being of our fur friends than expected. In fact, the importance of the microbiome is something that modern medicine is just beginning to understand.

When the natural skin biome is out of balance, the resulting condition is known as “dysbiosis.” A recent article by Suzannah Weiss on Bustle.com discussed findings on the widespread affects of dysbiosis in humans, ranging from bloating to chronic depression.

While the gut biome and the need for a diet with probiotics gets plenty of attention in the pet world, current research conducted by the American Academy of Dermatology is finding that regular topical probiotic use in skin care products can prove beneficial to general skin problems associated with “topical dysbiosis.”

Most pet parents are closely in tune with their pet’s health status – but there are also some common symptoms that get overlooked, which could actually be a result of an out-of-whack skin biome.

5 Signs Your Pet is Suffering from a Dysbiosis of the Skin:

  1. They Itch a Lot

Environmental damage from wind, weather, over-grooming and even the occasional dip in the swimming pool can wreak havoc on a dog’s skin, stripping away the protective layer known as the sebum. The sebum is an oily layer on the surface of the skin that houses the microbiome and acts as the first layer of protection against pathogenic yeast, fungus and bacteria. Oatmeal shampoos and medicated products can provide some symptomatic relief, but do not address the underlying problem, and can often contribute to a relapse.  

  1. They have excessive body odor

The number one cause of excessive odor is yeast. Dogs suffering from allergies or hormonal imbalance are especially susceptible to underlying infection. A lot of the over-the-counter solutions feature anti-bacterial properties, which can actually perpetuate the problem.

  1. They shed more than normal

All dogs shed, but if things are getting out of control it is most likely due to physical and/or psychological stress manifested in an autoimmune response. Most shampoos advertised as “de-shedding” simply help rinse out unwanted hair. Addressing the cause of stress is the first step and often requires a trip to the vet.

  1. They take a lot of antibiotics

Antibiotics are good at killing the bad bacteria, but they are even better at killing the good bacteria too – and they have no effect whatsoever on fungus and yeast (which is usually the real problem). Animals that take antibiotics regularly are open to all kinds of opportunistic pathogens and lack the support of their symbiotic community. The best bet is to avoid antibiotics unless absolutely necessary and actively replenish the beneficial bacteria (through ingestible & topical probiotics) once the drug cycle is complete.

  1. They have frequent hot spots

Pyotraumatic dermatitis, commonly known as a “hot spot” is a common form of pyoderma. Bad bacteria on the skin triggers the immune system to react by creating an itchy, inflamed, bumpy skin rash that can quickly turn into a hot spot. Products that kill the bad bacteria do nothing to prevent it from returning or calm the inflammation, necessitating additional ingredients to help mask the pain.

Supporting a Healthy Skin Biome for Your Pet:

Topical probiotics are a great alternative to traditional solutions. “Probiotic shampoos and conditioners such as Skout’s Honor Probiotic Shampoo Products can help maintain the health of your pet’s skin and luster of their coat,” says Liz Hanson, DVM. “Using a probiotic shampoo has shown benefits to help prevent infection, combat hot spots, rehydrate dry skin, naturally deodorize, and prevent matting and excessive shedding.” Probiotic shampoo and conditioners is on the forefront of natural ways to help restore the health of your pet’s skin and maintain the natural beauty of their coat.

Probiotic Grooming Line Wins 2018 Industry Recognition Award!

Skout’s innovative line of Probiotic Grooming Products, was selected by the publication’s editors as the WINNER in the competitive Dog Skin & Coat category. The awards are featured in this month’s issue of Pet Business Magazine.

Skout’s Honor’s Probiotic Grooming Line Includes:

  • Probiotic Shampoo (16oz, MSRP: $19.99)
  • Probiotic Conditioner (16oz, MSRP: $18.99)
  • Probiotic Shampoo & Conditioner (2-in-1): (16oz, MSRP: $20.99)
  • Probiotic Daily-use Detangler (8oz, MSRP: $14.99)
  • Probiotic Daily-use Deodorizer (8oz, MSRP: $12.99)

*Each product is available in Honeysuckle, Lavender and Unscented varieties, as well as in bulk sizes (gallons) for professional grooming service providers. Grooming professionals can receive a FREE full size sample of grooming products by filling out a Skout’s Honor PRO FORM here.

Why do Probiotics Matter for Grooming?
The skin’s natural microbiome serves as the first line of defense against allergens and opportunistic pathogens, responsible for a variety of conditions in pets, including excessive shedding, itching, dryness, hot spots and odor. When applied to the skin, probiotics offer soothing hydration and long-lasting odor control without negatively affecting the function of this vital protective layer for a naturally healthier-looking skin and coat.

Probiotic Shampoo & Conditioner WINS Pet Age 2018 Reader’s Choice Award!

2018 Pet Age Reader’s Choice Award WINNER!

Pet Parents Love New Grooming Line for a Preventative Approach to Skin & Coat Health!

Pet Age Magazine has named Skout’s Honeysuckle Probiotic Pet Shampoo + Conditioner (2-in-1) as a winner in the “Dog: Grooming” category, and features the product in this month’s issue.

Probiotic 2-in-1 Shampoo + Conditioner in Honeysuckle

Having launched earlier this year, the new Probiotic line signifies the first and only preventative grooming products that stop skin problems before they start. Patent-pending topical probiotic technology supports a pet’s natural defenses against shedding, itching, dryness, hot spots and odor for a naturally-balanced and healthier skin and coat.

Infused with a live, colony-forming probiotic kefir culture, the Skout’s Probiotic grooming line brings a naturally healthier-look and feel to even the most sensitive skin. Suitable for all skin types and conditions, the products are sulfate-free, paraben-free and soap-free, with no added colors or dyes, no triclosan, no petrolatum, no DEA, no cocabetaine and no fillers. All of Skout’s Honor’s products are eco-friendly, non-toxic and are never tested on animals.

The 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner combo offers a premium grooming experience in just one wash and gently cleanses and hydrates, while leaving a pet’s fur silky and smelling amazing.

 Skout’s Honor’s Full Probiotic Grooming Line Includes:

  • Probiotic Shampoo (16oz, MSRP: $19.99)
  • Probiotic Conditioner (16oz, MSRP: $18.99)
  • Probiotic Shampoo & Conditioner (2-in-1): (16oz, MSRP: $20.99)
  • Probiotic Daily-use Detangler (8oz, MSRP: $14.99)
  • Probiotic Daily-use Deodorizer (8oz, MSRP: $12.99)

*Each product is available in Honeysuckle, Lavender and Unscented varieties, as well as in bulk sizes (gallons) for professional grooming service providers.

Professional Groomers/Service Providers can receive a FREE full size sample of products by filling out the PRO FORM on Skout’s website.

For more information about Skout’s Honor’s Cleaning & Grooming products, visit www.skoutshonor.com. For national & international distribution and retail opportunities please contact Shannan Morlas, National Sales Manager, at shannan@skoutshonor.com.

About Skout’s Honor

Skout’s Honor is an award-winning company based in Irvine, Calif. that offers BETTER, FASTER, STRONGER green cleaning solutions to everyday pet stain and odor problems and a patent-pending line of Probiotic Skin Care/Grooming products for pets. Founded by a team of animal lovers and proud pet owners, the company created its “Skout’s Paw Pledge,” and donates a day’s worth of food for a shelter animal in need with every product sold. For more information on the products and for specific retailers, please visit SkoutsHonor.com

GQ.com: For Healthy Skin, Just Add…Bacteria?

There is more bacteria on our skin than inside of our body!

Just like your gut, your skin can benefit from the right balance of bacteria. Marketing for soaps and hand sanitizers typically uses scorched-earth language, stuff like “Kills 99.99% of germs!” The idea being: Destroy all bacteria. But that might actually be bad for you—the way antibiotics disturb your body’s chemical makeup. Like your stomach, your skin has a delicate balance of bacteria called a “microbiome.”

“Our bodies are a symbiotic organism that rely heavily on their relationship with bacteria, inside and out,” says Julie E. Russak, MD, founder of Russak Dermatology Clinic. “We have more bacteria on our skin than we do in our body.”

Russak says that the skin microbiome protects us from invasive virus-causing pathogens and maintains the pH function of the skin. (That is, it prevents skin from getting too dry or too oily.) So how can we thwart the bad bacteria without offing the good stuff?

Apparently certain brands are rolling out “biome-friendly” products that specifically work to fortify the skin’s microbiome—like Mother DirtTULA, and even Clinique. They don’t necessarily contain live bacteria (though some do); instead, most contain “pre-biotics,” which stimulate the good stuff. Russak names lactic acid as one example: “It helps against acne and decreases inflammation in sensitive skin, thus restoring the barrier function of the skin, which helps with sensitive skin and eczema,” she says.

Here’s another way to look at it: Instead of an antibacterial approach (“Kill everything!”), these brands buttress the good stuff so that it’s strong enough to fend off the bad stuff on its own. (“Organize and resist!”) Another way to support your skin’s microbiome is to eliminate ingredients that kill the good microbes in the skin—these are typically the ingredients that preserve a product and thus give it a longer shelf life. So while you might sacrifice longevity on that cleanser, you make up for it by not sacrificing the healthy ecology that has effectively sustained humans for, I dunno, hundreds of thousands of years.

Your scalp and hair can benefit from a probiotic approach, too. A microbiome-friendly shampoo helps balance the oil production up top, meaning your hair gets less greasy…meaning you don’t have to shampoo as often. (This is a good thing, since shampoo strips your hair and scalp of its natural, healthy oils that keep them strong.) So, yeah, it’s a shampoo you buy so that you ultimately use shampoo less. Weird, I know, but it’s the same theory as a probiotic approach: Don’t kill the good with the bad! Preserve the good oils and increase your dependence on them, instead of stoking your repulsion to oil as a whole. You’ll have more good hair days because of it.

You can further benefit your skin and body’s microbiomes by maintain a pro-probiotic diet. “Include a wide variety of fresh, whole foods that will activate, replenish, and nourish your body,” says Russak. “And as long as you avoid common irritants such as processed foods, sugar, gluten, and dairy, your skin will thank you.” She also suggests eating foods like fermented organic veggies and fruits, as well as fermented yogurts (with live or active cultures) in moderation, though goat’s milk yogurt, coconut yogurt, and almond yogurt are good alternatives. And here’s one curveball: Russak “prescribes” sauerkraut as a source of many healthy live cultures, in addition to microbiome-friendly vitamins A, B, C, and K.

Bottom line: “A strong, balanced microbiome is essential for a glowing, healthy complexion,” Russak says.

Even if it means rubbing bacteria on your skin.

(Reposted from a Skincare GQ.com article – August 2017 – by Adam Hurley)

CURIOUS ABOUT PROBIOTICS & HOW THEY CAN BENEFIT YOUR PET’S SKIN HEALTH?  Click here to find out about Skout’s Honor’s Probiotic Skin Care line — FOR PETS!  Shop our probiotic skin care line!

Real Simple Magazine Picks Skout’s Honor for “Best Natural Grooming Products” Round Up

 

This August, Real Simple Magazine published it’s short list of top choices after reviewing more than 30 Natural Pet Grooming products and Skout’s Honor’s NEW Probiotic Skin Care line for pets made the cut!

“You won’t find any harmful chemicals in these pet grooming supplies—only pampering, moisturizing products that really work…Rethink your pet’s skincare routine with [Skout’s Honor] probiotic shampoo, conditioner, and deodorizer set. Made for pets suffering from excessive shedding and itching, this system uses beneficial bacteria to reduce inflammation while also keeping your pet smelling (and feeling) good.” – Editor, Real Simple

Incredible results using our Probiotic Daily-use Deodorizer!

Don’t take our word for it…check out this latest testimonial we received from a customer who used our Probiotic Daily-use Deodorizer to treat a serious skin allergy/hotspot problem.  Bow to the WOW!

Our Probiotic Skin Care for pets is the first and ONLY grooming line designed to stop problems before they start…but we’re also hearing some amazing stories from our retail partners and pet parents about its ability to treat and speed up the healing process for a variety of skin issues.

Natural solution to treating hotspots, itching, odor, shedding, inflammation & infection!

HGTV Magazine features Skout’s Honor Probiotic Skin Care for Pets!

Pick up the latest issue of HGTV Magazine and you’ll find Skout’s Honor’s Probiotic Shampoo + Conditioner (in Honeysuckle scent) featured as one of “16 Ways to Spoil Your Pet!”

Your competitive advantage: Topical Probiotics!

Discover the unique Competitive Advantage of using Topical Probiotics on your pet, and why our NEW Probiotic Grooming line is better than the current alternative ‘natural’ skin & coat treatments…

Skout’s Honor Topical Probiotics – support the good bacteria that naturally calm inflammation and prevent bad bacteria from taking over. No known side effects. Safe for use on all animals. An active approach designed to correct the underlying cause of the most common grooming related ailments, including excessive shedding, itching, dryness, hot-spots, odor and infection. Helps breaks the cycle of treat-and-repeat.

Current Alternative Treatments:

Enzyme Treatments – kill the source of infection on dog or cat’s skin. Effectively wipes the slate clean, leaving the door open to opportunistic pathogens and creating a cycle of treat-and-repeat.  Promotes imbalance.

Colloidal Oatmeal – create a physical barrier to soothe and protect itchy skin. Passive replacement for damaged or missing skin biome. Only works when present. Does not treat the underlying cause of bacterial imbalance. Can be an allergen. Creates a cycle of treat-and-repeat.

Alpha Hydroxys – remove the top layers of dead skin cells. Eliminate the skin’s natural protective barrier, leaving the door open to opportunistic pathogens and creating a cycle of treat-and-repeat. Can cause mild skin irritation, redness, swelling, itching and skin discoloration. Promotes imbalance.

Corticosteroids and Antifungal Cream – treatment of symptomatic inflammatory yeast infection. Kills fungus and reduces inflammation. Potentially fatal if swallowed. Kills yeast, disrupts biome, leaving the door open to opportunistic pathogens and creating a cycle of treat-and-repeat. Promotes imbalance.

NOTE: Topical probiotics can be used in conjunction with an enzyme or other anti-fungal treatment as a therapeutic remedy to help restore the natural biome and break the cycle of treat-and-repeat.

How to Clean Up After Your New Dog, The Skout’s Honor Way!

Skout’s Honor knows that welcoming a new member of the family can be a challenging feat. When a new baby comes home, parents spend hours ‘nesting’ – decorating the nursery, washing linens and clothing, sanitizing bottles, vacuuming and safety-proofing various areas from room to room.

The same thing also happens when there’s a new puppy or adopted dog in the house! You pup-proof everything, making sure he or she doesn’t have access to dangerous TV & lamp cords, chemicals, valuables that could become chew toys, etc. You also spend time blocking off areas with nice furniture and rugs, to prevent marking incidents and expensive accidents from happening. They will potty-train in time, but what if it takes longer than you imagined it would? Here is a rundown of puppy cleaning essentials to have in your arsenal from Skout’s Honor, so that your new ‘fur’ baby will feel welcomed – and you’ll still feel at home, too!

Skout’s Honor Puppy Essentials

Skout’s Honor Urine Destroyer & Carpet Pad Penetrator

Got pee problems?  We’ve got the answer. Ideal for carpets, upholstery and porous or water-safe surfaces, our Urine Destroyer attacks the worst stains and eliminates them for good!  And when you’re dealing with dried, old stubborn urine stains that have made their way into carpet padding below the surface, you don’t just need a cleaner – you need a penetrator. No stain stands a chance with the Skout’s Honor Urine Destroyer/Carpet Pad Penetrator! Don’t take our word for it…click HERE for customer reviews on this potty-training essential!

Skout’s Honor Urine Destroyer & Carpet Pad Penetrator

Skout’s Honor Stain and Odor Remover

You’ll thank us later.  Our everyday, all-purpose stain and odor remover that truly works on everything – and gets the job done fast. From those occasional muddy paws on the furniture and severe pet messes that require serious attention, to grease and even wine stains! Let us handle the dirty work so you can get back to living and loving your pet. Find out why our customers love this one HERE.

Skout’s Honor Stain & Odor Remover

Skout’s Honor Odor Eliminator

Love stinks (but it doesn’t have to)!  We know you love your pets, but they sure do create some awful odors at times.  Skout’s Honor Odor Eliminator instantly destroys odor molecules on contact, so they never come back. Spray on dog beds, furniture, car seats…and try on other stinky household areas like the bathroom, trash can, diaper pail, etc.  Find out why our customers call this product “Magic in a bottle”!

Skout’s Honor Odor Eliminator

Skout’s Honor Patio Cleaner and Deodorizer

Keep the great outdoors smelling great! Our Patio Cleaner & Deodorizer is perfect for freshening up your outdoor living spaces and preventing those unpleasant, lingering stains and odors from ruining your next backyard party.  Spray on concrete, stone, astro turf and other water-safe surfaces to quickly rinse away nasty smells and get back to enjoying the day.

Skout’s Honor Patio Cleaner & Deodorizer

Skout’s Honor Carpet Machine Solution

What stain?  This is what you’ll be asking yourself after super-charging your carpet cleaner with our professional-strength Carpet Machine Solution. Simply pour the product into your machine’s water tank for a whole new level of deep cleaning & deodorizing.

Skout’s Honor Carpet Machine Solution

Put simply, if you have Skout’s Honor’s cleaning products on hand, you will be prepared for whatever pet mess comes your way!  Shop all of our cleaning products HERE – or search our RETAIL LOCATOR to find a pet specialty retailer near you who carries Skout’s Honor!

Skout’s Honor Better, Faster, Stronger plant-powered cleaning products