Dogs are beloved by their families, but just like humans, they’re susceptible to moments of digestive discomfort.
When this happens, many families tend to worry, unsure of how to fix these problems. Does diarrhea in dogs indicate a severe health issue? Are there home remedies to solve it? How can you prevent it?
When your pet has diarrhea, it’s often not their only symptom, and can mean something greater than just an upset stomach.
Here, we’ll cover how to best alleviate these symptoms, as well as what to do in the future.
Dog Diarrhea Symptoms to Watch For
Of course, diarrhea is never a good thing, but there are other health issues that can accompany that.
First and foremost, vomiting; this can dehydrate your dog and cause further complications. There is also the danger of a loss in appetite, which can then by extension cause lethargy.
Should any of this happen, it is time to consider the vet, as the situation has escalated past the bounds of normal.
Causes of Dog Diarrhea
Diet will be the primary issue. It’s best to start by evaluating what your dog has eaten. You should check what items, foods, or plants your dog has had access to which may have been harmful.
Animal bones or carcasses are prime examples, as well the excrement of other pets, as these can transfer diseases or illnesses.
If Fido has recently played in the park or went for a solo run in the woods, they likely consumed something which their body is now rejecting.
Also, be wary of “people-food.” Stuff like raw chicken or chocolate are especially bad, as the chicken can give them salmonella and chocolate is essentially just poison for dogs.
Some varieties of dog food also use corn as their primary ingredient, which many dogs are actually allergic to.
The issue can also be from parasites. Much like humans, dogs can catch a wide variety of illnesses from unclean water, allowing worms to invade their system – even if they’ve recently been treated for this.
Depending on the frequency of the diarrhea, the problem could be hookworms, roundworms, or whipworms, all of which can be serious if not treated immediately.
Treatment Methods for Basic Dog Diarrhea
If you’re unsure of the cause, or have reason to believe they’ve consumed a toxic food or item, then be sure to take your dog to the vet. Here, an expert will be able to determine the cause and prescribe the appropriate treatment.
However, if they’ve consumed food that is too rich or chewed on a nasty old bone, it’s likely to pass. In the meantime, ensure your dog has access to lots of clean water.
Also, try feeding your dog a small meal of boiled white-meat chicken (ensuring there are no bones or skin) with white rice. This can help steady their digestive system and assist in passing whatever triggered this condition.
If Your Dog Has Vomited
If there is vomiting included with the diarrhea, the problem may be more serious. While it’s always wise to visit the vet, should you choose to play this by ear, start by removing all food for twelve hours.
Your dog may refuse the water, but do not let up, instead, try mixing in a small amount of broth with the water to ensure they drink it.
Once the dog has at least six hours without throwing up, it is time to give them the white meat chicken (once again with no skin or bones) and white rice. Repeat this if there is no vomiting after another two hours.
You will want to continue this treatment, gradually increasing the amount you’re providing your dog and separating the time between meals further and further, until everything is back to normal.
How to Prevent Dog Diarrhea
Once you have cured your dog’s diarrhea, it is time to keep it from happening again. The first step is keeping your dog from getting overly stressed. Avoid major changes to their diet and environment.
It is also advised not to give your dog small bones, especially not chicken bones, as these can splinter inside of them and cause problems much worse than just diarrhea.
Additionally, it’s often a bad idea to feed them table scraps. This can cause them to eat something that does not agree with them, which can be a serious problem if left unchecked.
You will also want to make sure their deworming and vaccinations are up to date. If they’re behind, there is a much bigger chance of the dog catching a serious disease or worse.
Here’s a video showing more details on dog diarrhea treatments.
Diarrhea can be frightening unless it is taken care of immediately. As soon as it begins, contact your local veterinarian and schedule a visit with them.
Most importantly though, be there for your dog. Make sure they’re comforted and taken care of, and they will get better.