Treating Diarrhea in Dogs

By Bridie Cavanaugh

Treating Diarrhea in Dogs

Diarrhea can be treated and cured at home in healthy dogs. If the dog exhibits other symptoms, like vomiting or diarrhea that is black or bloody, contact your veterinarian promptly.

Bridie Cavanaugh
By Bridie Cavanaugh

Canine diarrhea is common. Chances are that your dog will experience a bout of diarrhea at least once in his lifetime. The primary symptom of diarrhea is the frequent passing of watery or loose stools. Diarrhea has many causes, the most common of which is diet. Canine diarrhea can lead to dehydration. Any occurrence of diarrhea should be discussed with your veterinarian.CausesEating human food can lead to diarrhea.

Feeding your dog a low-quality commercial dog food may cause intestinal issues.

Foraging through the garbage may allow your dog to access items that cause distress.

Changing your dog’s commercial diet, without proper time for introduction, can cause diarrhea.

Parasites, bacteria or virus can cause illness.

Stale dog food can contain mold, which will cause loose stools.

Food allergies may require a change in food to alleviate diarrhea symptoms.

Stress can cause diarrhea.

Diarrhea may be a sign of poisoning.Home TreatmentYou can attempt home treatment for the first few days of diarrhea. If your dog has not improved, after you have implemented these methods, a veterinary visit will be necessary.

Provide clean water at all times. Diarrhea can quickly lead to dehydration and even death.

Add low-sodium chicken broth to the dog’s water if you are having a hard time getting him to drink.

Supplement his food or water with probiotics. Probiotics are a natural supplement consisting of helpful bacteria and yeast.

Feed you dog a bland, homemade diet. Boiled chicken and rice is a good menu plan. Boiled hamburger, plain cottage cheese and canned pumpkin, not pie filling, may also help.

Do not add oils or spices to your dog’s food.

Give your dog Pepto-Bismol or Imodium D. Check with your veterinarian for an appropriate dosage.Veterinary VisitSchedule a veterinary visit if your dog’s symptoms have not improved after a few days of home treatment. A visit should be scheduled immediately if there is blood in the diarrhea, if his feces are black or if your dog is vomiting. These can be signs of a larger health issue.

Bring a stool sample with you to the veterinary visit. The veterinarian will use the sample to test for parasites.

Be prepared to discuss your dog’s symptoms and any potential causes that you may know.

Testing may include blood tests, intestinal biopsy and a digestive system examination.

The veterinarian may prescribe a commercial dog food designed for dogs with allergies. She may also suggest medication such as metronidazole, tylosine or tetracycline.ResourcesreferenceDog DiarrheareferenceHolistic PetreferenceDog Health Guide

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