Dogs are not just pets; They’re more like friends and family members to us, especially in the US, where 50 million-plus households own at least one dog. Like all other biological species, dogs can also be affected by different diseases. Diarrhea is one of the common diseases that hamper the health of your dog. It’s a severe health condition in which there is a loss of nutrients and minerals through feces. I hope you do not want your beloved pet to be a sufferer from diarrhea, and the question spinning inside your head right now is- how can I stop diarrhea in my dog?
Because you love your puppy and want to keep it healthy, well, do not worry at all!
In this article, we will have a thorough discussion on the causes of diarrhea in dogs, symptoms of diarrhea in a dog, and how to treat dog diarrhea. Let’s dive into this vital discussion for all dog owners!
Causes Of Diarrhea In Dogs
The first question that comes to a dog owner’s mind when they think about this vile threat, diarrhea, for their dog is, “what causes bloody diarrhea in a dog?”. Indeed!
Firstly, you need to understand the causes of diarrhea in dogs. So, you can take the necessary steps to keep your dog safe from this severe disease. Here are the common causes of diarrhea in dogs:
- Ate rotten food and indigestible kinds of stuff: It’s the most common cause of diarrhea in dogs. Sometimes, dogs tend to eat garbage or rotten food, which causes upset in their stomach. The intensity of diarrhea from this cause can be mild to severe depending on the type of food/stuff swallowed by the dog. For instance, having spoiled food has less effect on the stomach and eating indigestible pieces of things like toys, plastic materials, and different types of other objects. If your dog is affected by such a cause, try to cure it at home. But take it to a nearby veterinarian if the severity increases over time.
- Sudden change in the diet: your dog’s stomach is used to having almost homogenous food for a long time. So, a sudden change in the dietary plan can upset the stomach and cause diarrhea in your dog. It takes time for the stomach to adopt new diets. To prevent this problem, you can change the diet gradually and take some to switch to the new diet.
- Swallowed toxic materials: If your dog is suffering from diarrhea frequently, the reason could be that your dog swallowed something poisonous. The common types of toxic materials eaten by dogs are toiletries, poisonous plants, toxic drugs, and other available chemical materials from your house. That is the reason why these things need to be kept safe from these curious puppies.
- Affected by harmful bacteria and viruses: Treating your dog with raw meats, half-cooked meats, or rotten vegetables can cause diarrhea. So, you should provide items that are health certified and safe to eat. Sometimes, dogs are also affected by viruses like Calicivirus Infection, Coronavirus gastroenteritis, and Parvovirus Infection can be causes of diarrhea in your dog. Such viral diseases can be highly threatening for the life of your puppy.
- Side reaction of drugs: Diarrhea can also be derived from regularly prescribed drugs like anti-inflammatories or antibiotics. In such a case, you should discuss it with the veterinarian to change the medications or add new medicines to the prescription that will help prevent such side effects.
- Symptom of liver and kidney disease: Diarrhea can be a symptom that your dog has kidney or liver diseases. Kidney failure can cause problems like vomiting, loss of appetite, and eventually diarrhea. So, if you think this is the reason why your dog has diarrhea, visit a veterinarian as early as possible. Otherwise, your dog might face more severe health issues.
- Parasites: Intestinal parasites are one of the common reasons why your dog has diarrhea. A dog can get several intestinal parasites, including roundworm, tapeworm, hookworm, whipworm, giardia, and coccidia. Deworming methods should be used periodically to avoid such causes. It’s essential to take steps when your dog is affected by these parasites because sometimes these parasites can be transferred to humans too.
- Pancreatitis: Pancreatitis can cause your dog’s pancreas to produce fewer enzymes needed to break down and process nutrients from the food it eats. This can cause diarrhea in your dog, even if it is eating a proper and regular diet.
- Intestinal cancer: Intestinal tumors and cancers decrease the digestion power of your dog substantially. This type of disease causes different kinds of other upsets in the stomach. Care should be taken from the early stage to reduce the effect of such a disease on your dog.
- Other causes: Diarrhea can also be caused by Inflammatory bowel disease, Colitis, Allergic Reaction, and certain types of endocrine disorders, stress & anxiety, etc.
Symptoms That Your Dog Has Diarrhea
Now that you know the causes of diarrhea in a dog, it’s time to know the symptoms. You should clearly know if your dog is affected by diarrhea or not so that you can take action accordingly. If you confuse diarrhea with any other diseases, it wouldn’t be possible to cure it properly in time from such a threat. The most common symptoms of diarrhea are listed below.
- Loss of appetite: If the dog is affected by diarrhea, it will not take diets like usual time. Your dog will completely lose appetite and restrain itself from eating.
- More frequent and amount of feces: you will see frequent feces of the puppy. The number of feces will be more than usual, so will be the liquidity of it.
- Blood might be seen in the feces: blood also might be seen in the feces. In that case, you have to consider it a severe condition and visit a vet as soon as possible.
- Vomiting and nausea: The affected dog will vomit with frequent feces.
- The dog might look weak and exhausted: diarrhea makes dogs very weak, and they look highly lethargic. They hardly move from place to place in such situations.
- Might catch fever or likely diseases: The body might get overheated and look like your dog has caught a fever.
- Dehydration: frequent feces and vomiting make a diarrhea-affected dog dehydrated quickly. If you notice something like that, consider that it could be one of the symptoms of diarrhea.
- Bad breath: Due to indigestion, the dog can exhale lousy breath sometimes. Although it is a prevalent symptom of other diseases, you should be careful and vigilant to see any other signs of diarrhea present in the dog.
- Change in behavior: the dog can behave abnormally due to diarrhea. Try to figure out the actual reason behind these abnormalities. If other symptoms of diarrhea are also seen, you can take home remedies or consultancy from a vet.
- Presence of worms in stool: Sometimes, Worms might be seen in the stool. Usually, when diarrhea is caused by parasites, these kinds of symptoms appear.
How To Treat Dog Diarrhea
If your dog is already affected by diarrhea or you want to know how to treat diarrhea in a dog for unseen situations that may arise in the future, this section of the article is just the right place for you. Now we will discuss the ways how do you cure diarrhea in a dog. There are basically two ways to cure diarrhea in a dog. Firstly, you can make home remedies for diarrhea. The second option is medications and visiting a vet. Let’s discuss both of these ways.
- Home remedies to stop diarrhea in a dog: Home remedies are only applicable if the intensity of diarrhea is mild. These remedies are very effective ways to stop diarrhea in a dog without costing any money. Besides, it’s not really tough to make these remedies. Below are some home remedies that can work very efficiently to cure your dog’s diarrhea.
- Keep your dog hydrated: You must keep your dog hydrated when it has diarrhea. Due to frequent feces, the dog becomes dehydrated very quickly, which results in physical weakness and lethargy. Keeping your dog hydrated will help it to stay strong even during such a physical debacle. Besides, the consumed water helps digest the food left in its stomach and helps cure the problem quickly.
- Rice water fasting method: When your dog has mild diarrhea, the most sensible thing to start with is to put your dog on a 24-hour rice-water fast. Fasting your dog allows her GIT to rest and recover from whatever insult it has received. This fasting method helps your dog’s GIT rest and recover from any abnormalities it may have received. During this process, you have to make sure that the dog gets enough rice water to drink. Rice water is a kind of creamy liquid that results from boiling white rice in water. It is essential to use quality white rice to make the rice water; “small” rice is not much effective, and brown rice has too much fiber, which does not help firm the stool because it speeds up the transit of digested material through the colon.
“Let’s know the proper method of making this rice water. Firstly, boil one cup of white rice in four cups of water for 10 to 30 minutes or until the water turns velvety white. Pour out the liquid and allow it some time to cool down. Then serve the rice water to your dog as often as it drinks. If the dog is not interested, mix a teaspoon of any flavor your pet loves in the rice water to increase its palatability.“
- Provide bland food: Do not feed your its regular dog food after the fasting period and offer it a tiny amount of something bland like boiled chicken and rice. This would be the most appropriate item for its stomach. You can make a combination of rice and boiled chicken to serve the dog. If you use chicken, please ensure that it is skinless and boneless. Feed him modest quantities at a time to make sure he can take it in. If so, then slowly feed him more and more until he is feeling better. Make the rice the bulky part of the meal. Continually give this meal until the stools appear to be in better shape. If there are no vomiting or worsening symptoms, as time passes by, you can slightly increase the amount. You will end up feeding smaller portions more frequently than what is their usual feeding routine. Then, provide a regular diet gradually. This has to be done gradually over a couple of days.
- Cuddles and Rest: Just like us, when your puppy feels unwell, it needs a little bit of extra love and care. I hope with these natural remedies you can cure your dog at home. But make sure that your beloved dog gets extra attention and rest.
- Feeding Pumpkin and yogurt can be a good option: treating yogurt to your dog can help restore the balance in its digestive system as yogurt contains good bacteria. Definitely, yogurt is just another option among many others, but dogs usually like to eat yogurt.
Another option you can consider is pumpkins which is an excellent source of fiber. It’s a cost-efficient and natural treatment of diarrhea of dogs. You can find it anywhere in the US, or you can just order it online. Bland canned pumpkins will help improve the stools of your dog. Pumpkins contain a massive amount of fiber which strengthens the digestion power of your dog. Combining the fiber in pumpkin and probiotic qualities in specially-formulated commercial treats can cure diarrhea in your dog. Here are the steps that you can follow for this method. Firstly, purchase a spice-less canned pumpkin. Then, mix the pumpkin with plain boiled rice and feed it to your puppy. You can also keep the left pumpkin in the freeze. Some brands are offering air-dried pumpkins that you can easily store and use whenever needed.
Medications To Cure Diarrhea In A Dog
Home remedies are not the only way to treat diarrhea in dogs. Especially when your dog’s diarrhea gets severe. It would be wise if you treated your dog with medications in such cases. Here are some drugs and treatments for diarrhea in your dog.
- Probiotics: Probiotics are typically used for gut health, help restore healthy gut flora after taking antibiotics, stress-induced events, and general immune system support. These probiotic supplements contain live bacteria and yeast, good for your body, especially your digestive system. Probiotic supplements help repopulate the good bacteria in the intestinal tract after an episode of diarrhea or vomiting. You can buy probiotic tablets or give your dog plain yogurt (especially one with Lactobacillus acidophilus). You can mix yogurt with rice, chicken broth, or cottage cheese while reintroducing food after fasting. Additionally, giving dogs probiotic supplements also promotes the production of short-chain fatty acids, which inhibit the growth of pathogens such as Clostridium perfringens, salmonella, and E. coli and help prevent urinary tract infections in dogs. bitches. Just make sure it’s plain yogurt. No flavorings or added sugars. Many traditional and holistic vets recommend a probiotic for regular and occasional use on canine and feline patients.
- Diagnostic tests: Often, the diarrhea of your dog can be caused by some more serious health issues like intestinal cancer, pancreatitis, kidney, and liver failure. So it’s always best to do some diagnostic tests if the vet suggests. These diagnostics may include microscopic fecal evaluation, X-rays with or without barium, blood tests, fecal cultures or DNA tests, biopsies of the intestinal tract, endoscopy, ultrasound, and exploratory abdominal surgery. Finding out the exact cause of diarrhea can help to cure your dog quickly. Besides, if any other fatal diseases are found on the tests, you can take extra steps to provide your dog with proper treatments from an early stage.
- Medications: Metronidazole and Tylosin are two antimicrobials that contain anti-inflammatory properties in the gastrointestinal tract. If the bacteria overgrow, additional antimicrobials, such as amoxicillin, may be used. A combination of Probiotics and fiber can play a vital role in resolving diarrhea. Large, microscopic organisms in the digestive tract waste fiber and provide short-chain fatty acids that help the digestive tract to heal. For cancer-induced streaks, chemotherapy medication may be recommended. Stomach calming agents and gastric protectors can help resolve stomach and upper gastrointestinal discomfort, and anti-nausea medications are included regularly when gagging or loss of appetite are the problems.
- Deworming: If the diarrhea is caused by parasites, you’ll see worms in the dog’s stools. In that case, deworming would be a good cure option for your puppy. Deworming methods and treatments are usually controlled by mouth and annihilate varieties of worms like tapeworms, hookworms, roundworms, and whipworms. Different types of dewormers are available on the market. Your dog’s vet should fix and choose the best dewormer considering the parasite being treated and various other things, such as your pet’s age, size, and current health. The names of antiparasitic drugs include piperazine, fenbendazole, and praziquantel, according to Revival Animal Health.
- Consultancy of a Veterinarian: It is highly recommended that you visit a veterinarian if your dog’s situation does not improve by the home remedies. Take regular consultancy and communicate the health updates of your dog with the vet until your puppy gets well. Also, it’s essential to choose the right veterinarian for your dog. Administering the medications is not the only role your vet plays; they also provide care for the entire being. They tend to have different approaches when it comes to pets and medication. Before choosing the vet for your dog, have a brief discussion with him and see what he thinks about wellness and prevention issues when it comes to dogs.
It is highly possible that your dog might get caught by diarrhea at least once in its life time. But choosing the right path to treat your dog can minimize this risk. Besides, now that you know how to treat diarrhea in your dog. You can easily take effective actions and provide suitable treatment to your fur-buddy in his bad time. Remember that your awareness can protect your dog from this life-threatening disease. Shortly, Maintaining proper hygiene, providing a healthy diet & exercise and regular consultancy of a veterinarian can make sure that diarrhea cannot affect the health of your beloved dog.