Most people aren’t aware of it but diarrhea is almost as common in Dogs as it is in humans.
Although Dogs generally have stronger stomach acids that allow them a greater degree of protection against parasites and bacteria, they are not immune to them entirely.
The good news is that most cases of canine diarrhea will clear up on their own even without medication or treatment, although persistent or long lasting episodes of diarrhea should be brought to the attention of your veterinarian.
You should also take your pet in for treatment if vomiting occurs, or if there is blood in the stool.
Symptoms And Signs Of Dog Diarrhea
Canine diarrhea can be characterized by quite a few symptoms, although there are a few that occur in the vast majority of cases.
The most common sign that your Dog is suffering from diarrhea is the increased amount of loose or watery fecal matter.
The feces may also smell more unpleasant than usual.
At this point, you will hopefully be familiar enough with your Dog’s bathroom habits to realize when something is out of the ordinary.
Most Dogs that suffer from canine diarrhea will have to defecate more frequently, and with more intensity.
Your Dog may also seem to get better only to experience a more severe case within the span of a few days.
In addition, your Dog may pick up a certain amount of fecal matter in his tail, which may result in a lingering unpleasant odor around his vicinity.
As a Dog owner, you will probably experience quite a few case of canine diarrhea over the years.
The good news is that most cases of diarrhea in your pet is nothing to be concerned about, and they should clear up on their own within a few days.
There are certain cases of canine diarrhea that may warrant a more thorough diagnosis and treatment however, particularly if they are accompanied by the following symptoms:
Blood in The Stool
Any signs of blood in the feces should immediately be brought to the attention of your veterinarian.
This is a particularly alarming symptom that can be caused by a number of serious medical conditions ranging from a virus infection to parasites.
Both of these conditions can obviously be potentially dangerous and even life threatening, so it is best not to take any chances when you notice them.
Short Periods of High Intensity Diarrhea
This is another common sign of a serious health problem, and should again be brought to the attention of your veterinarian.
In addition to being a common sign of a viral or bacterial infection, this could also be an indicator of any one of a host of common canine illnesses.
Dogs can be a lot more sensitive to the effects of dehydration than humans are, particularly during episodes of canine diarrhea.
Making sure that your Dog gets plenty of water at all times is important of course, but it is even more so during diarrhea attacks.
If your Dog refuses to drink the water that you give him, take him to a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Most of these causes are quite common and easily observed in most Dogs.
The underlying conditions that may be present may not be as easy to detect however, so it is important to bring your pet in for diagnosis if the diarrhea persists for more than a few days.
Be aware of your Dog’s habits and take him to the vet if things do not improve within a few days, and you will have done your part in ensuring the continued good health of your pet.
What Causes Diarrhea In Dogs
In most cases, the primary cause of canine diarrhea is simply eating the wrong kind of food.
As tough as a Dog’s bodily functions may seem to be, its digestive system can actually be quite sensitive, and something as seemingly insignificant as eating foods that are not intended for canine consumption may be enough to cause a severe bout of diarrhea.
Keep in mind that Dogs have very different dietary requirements to humans, and it would be best to avoid feeding your dog human food if you are at all concerned about preserving his health…as well you should be!
Since eating “risky” food is so often the main cause of canine diarrhea, the easiest way to prevent this from happening is to simply stick to commercial Dog food from a reputable manufacturer.
The problem for many new Dog owners however is that there is quite a bewildering array of Dog food brands out on the market, and it can be quite confusing–not to mention–expensive to try them all out.
A good rule of thumb to follow is to choose your Dog food in accordance with the age, size, breed, and lifestyle of your pet.
Many Dog owners are concerned about feeding their Dog food that contains a high amount of preservatives and artificial ingredients.
If this bothers you as well, you may opt to feed your pet home-cooked meals instead.
Keep in mind that Dogs need a lot of protein in order to ensure their continued good health, and meat, poultry and fish are the best sources.
You do have to be careful about making sure that no bones from fish or chicken end up in your Dog’s plate, since they can case a number of health issues that are a lot worse than canine diarrhea.
You should be aware that a lot of cases of diarrhea is caused by rich or spicy foods that your Dog’s digestive system simply is not equipped to handle.
For this reason, it is best to stick to bland food and go easy on the flavors and seasonings.
You should also limit your sue of salt, oil, and even vegetables, which aren’t really essential for your Dog’s health.
One other common cause of canine diarrhea is a switch from one type of protein to another.
If you have to do this for whatever reason, it may be best to consult with your veterinarian in order to figure out the best way to go about making the change.
Another common cause of diarrhea is simple neglect.
A lot of Dogs would happily root through the trash for hours upon hours of given the chance, and this is unfortunately a good way to come down with a severe case of diarrhea.
As a responsible pet owner, it is up to you to ensure that your Dog doesn’t eat anything that it isn’t supposed to, and garbage definitely falls into that category!
You already have a number of risk factors to contend with so make it easy on yourself and on your Dog by keeping him out of the trash.
How To Treat Dog Diarrhea At Home Naturally
Diarrhea is actually quite a common occurrence in many pets, and as numerous Dog owners are aware of, it can strike suddenly and with no apparent cause.
As undetectable as the root cause of the condition may seem, there are actually a number of different reasons why your Dog may get diarrhea, with the most common one being poor eating habits.
In the majority of cases, canine diarrhea can be treated quite effectively at home using natural remedies.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take your Dog to the vet mind you, since all case of diarrhea should be treated as soon as possible in order to prevent dehydration in your pet.
Nevertheless, it is good to know that the condition can usually be treated fairly easily.
Before we go into the most common ways by which you can treat canine diarrhea naturally, it is important to make sure that you bring your pet in for proper diagnosis and treatment in cases of persistent diarrhea, or if you detect blood in the stool.
This also goes for pets in which diarrhea is accompanied by vomiting.
Fasting Your Dog for 24 Hours
The first step in treating your Dog naturally is putting him on a 24 hour fast or feeding him only a liquid diet.
This will flush out the digestive system of toxic matter and help hasten recovery.
If you choose to go the “fasting” route, make sure to provide plenty of water in order to protect your Dog from dehydration.
After the 24 hour period has lapsed, you can add some vegetable or meat broth to your Dog’s diet.
In addition to replacing lost water, this will also replenish his stores of essential sodium and potassium.
Your veterinarian may also recommend giving your Dog probiotics in order to restore the balance of beneficial and harmful bacteria in your Dog’s digestive system.
It may also be a good idea to introduce certain amino acids and herbs that will help ease the effects of an inflamed intestinal lining, which is so often a result of chronic diarrhea.
There is a certain approach to treating canine diarrhea naturally that involves restoring the gastrointestinal tract to its normal function.
Treating Dog Diarrhea Requires the Use of Nutrients Such as:
- Lactobacillus sporogenes, which is a probiotic substance that can control the spread of harmful bacterial.
- L-Glutamine, which is an amino acid that has beneficial effects on the walls of the intestines.
- Slippery Elm, which is an herb that can provide relief to irritated mucus membranes in the intestines.
- Saccharomyces boulardii, which is a yeast that can enhance the function of the intestines.
This can help hasten the road to recovery while easing any negative symptoms that your Dog may be experiencing.
Prevention Of Dog Diarrhea
Just like with any form of illness, prevention is a far better option than finding a cure.
Keep in mind that diarrhea is often a symptom of an underlying medical condition as opposed to being a disease itself.
In addition, diarrhea may be characterized by occasional loose stools or frequent watery feces.
One of the most common reasons for canine diarrhea is an irritation in the intestines.
This can itself be caused by a number of factors, ranging from unfamiliar food to eating “human” food.
In both cases, diarrhea can be avoided simply by preventing contact with the offending foods.
Changing Dog Food Can Causing Diarrhea
If you do plan to make changes in your Dog’s diet for whatever reasons, it may be a good idea to implement the changes over a span of several days as opposed to doing it all overnight.
You should allow your Dog to adjust slowly to the new diet in order to prevent any adverse effects in your pet.
For starters, you can try mixing in ¼ of the new food with ¾ of your Dog’s regular food.
You could then gradually increase the ratio of new food to “old” food if your Dog takes well to the new diet.
Making dietary changes in this manner will reduce the risk of intestinal upset and thereby reduce the chances of your pet experiencing diarrhea.
Some Table Scraps are Bad for Dogs
While feeding your Dog table scraps may not necessarily be a bad thing in itself, you do have to make sure not to give certain foods that may be too rich for canines’ digestive systems.
Fatty foods are particularly risky factors for canine diarrhea, and they may cause a number of other health issues as well.
They may put your Dog at risk for pancreatitis for instance, which can lead to a host of chronic digestive issues.
Most Dogs love meat of course, although you should be aware that commercial Dog food is processed to a much greater degree than food for humans is.
Food that is intended for human consumption may simply be too rich for your Dog’s sensitive system, and should probably be avoided in order to prevent canine diarrhea.
If you have to give your food to your Dog, it is also best to stick to beef or pork, as the bones from chicken or turkey can puncture your Dog’s stomach and intestinal lining, resulting in a number of health problems that can be significantly more serious than diarrhea.
Dog Diarrhea is result from a wide variety of causes including a change in the Dog’s food, the intake of medication, contaminated or spoiled food, intestinal pests, or even simply stress.
Dogs in which diarrhea is a regular occurrence would probably benefit from foods that are easy to digest.
This may require a shift to purely homemade food or a commercial Dog food that is intended specifically for Dogs with sensitive digestive systems.
You could also add a bit of fiber (canned pumpkin is a good choice) to your Dog’s diet. In addition to providing your pet with an additional source of dietary fiber, this will also help firm up the stool.