Diarrhea. What a word. Difficult to spell and even more difficult to deal with, especially when it’s your dog who is afflicted. Your sweet pup can’t tell you what is wrong. Does he have pain in his tummy? One day, firm poops and the next, dog diarrhea. Or worse yet, day after day, loose stool. Many canines tend toward this chronic issue. Happily, some remedies can help – a lot!
Dog diarrhea is a very common occurrence, largely because our beloved four-legged friends will generally put just about anything in their mouth, from vegetation to other animal’s poop to lizards and “it’s too scary to think about!”. But loose stool can also have other causes which may require medical attention if frequent or severe. Diarrhea can be especially dangerous if your dog is very young, very old, or has other medical conditions.
Common causes of sudden dog diarrhea:
- Eating something “questionable”
- Stress in the household
- New food or treats
- An infection of some kind
Common causes of chronic diarrhea in dogs:
- Dietary allergies or intolerances
- Infection with bacteria or parasites
- Various internal medical issues requiring veterinary intervention
Read more about immediate care for dog diarrhea from PetMD
Most of the time, sudden diarrhea, when caused by raiding the garbage or other of the common causes listed above, will subside in a day or two. Offering water while removing food for 12 hours, and then giving boiled chicken breast with rice until the stool is normal again can be very helpful. However, if your dog is vomiting, you see blood in the stool, there is a loss of appetite, extreme fatigue, or the diarrhea is tarry in color, it’s time to pick up the phone to your vet.
I have just dealt with recurrent diarrhea in my 2 young dogs. Now that I have stopped all treats, diarrhea has subsided. It’s very common that
Mother Nature vs. your dog!
It’s important to note that attractive plants in your yard can make for upsets in your dog’s tummy. Here in Florida, Sago Palms, oleanders, poinsettias, and even azaleas are poisonous. Did you know that tulips and hyacinth bulbs are very toxic, should your dog dig them up and chomp on them? Please take a few moments to survey your yard and identify potentially dangerous plants and shrubs.
Resources to help you identify toxic plants:
Research shows Flora Dog probiotics reduce dog diarrhea!
I have good news for you! Recently the University of Florida conducted a study in which Vital Planet probiotics were given to dogs with diarrhea. Research has proven for some time that probiotics help reduce diarrhea in humans from all stages of life, infancy to old age. I’m extremely excited to tell you that the same is true for our four-legged friends. The dogs receiving probiotics vs. placebo or standard medication experienced a quicker recovery from diarrhea than either of the other groups!
Are you and your dog ready for a Firm Stool?
Another helpful remedy for diarrhea in dogs can be fiber. Our favorite vet, Dr. Joel Murphy, tells us that “Often dogs with chronic colitis or sensitive colons that are prone to diarrhea benefit from increasing fiber in the diet.” A simple solution – Firm Stool. This easy to add powder contains pumpkin, alfalfa, rice bran along with probiotics to promote healthy bowel movements and a strong immune system.
Read all about the value of fiber in our recent blog Why Fiber for Fido, where you can check out our Healthy Doggy Poop chart and learn how to make sure that you meet your pet’s fiber requirements.
The process of declining health begins with impaired digestion. Your dog’s stool is a very helpful and obvious indicator of intestinal health. Besides the mess and smell, diarrhea is, at the very least, an indicator of internal imbalance, and at the worst, a serious disease process. Often intestinal balance can be restored simply through the daily addition of probiotics and fiber to your dog’s diet.
As an added plus, a strong digestive and immune system can much better withstand the occasional lizard delicacy! Dogs will be dogs!