Dogs are very indiscriminate about what they eat, and as a result they often suffer from gastric disorders including diarrhea and vomiting. Sometimes this can be minor, but in other cases it can lead to severe dehydration which can prove fatal.
When your dog has diarrhea, there are several home remedies that you can try out at home. If however the condition does not subside after a day, you should immediately seek out veterinary help.
How do I know if my dog has diarrhea?
The biggest symptom of diarrhea is of course loose stool which may or may not be accompanied by vomiting. Persistent diarrhea can also lead to dehydration which in turns contributes to lethargy and fatigue. More severe cases can lead to kidney failure, urinary tract infections, and even death.
What are the main causes of diarrhea in dogs?
The primary cause of diarrhea in dogs is scavenging activities, in which dogs eat indiscriminately without regard to what is good for them and what isn’t. Dogs are also prone to gobbling their food which can also lead to gastric disorders. Diarrhea can also be a secondary outcome of another disease or infection.
My dog has diarrhea: What can I do?
What you should do for your dog depends on whether or not he has been vomiting or not.
If your dog is vomiting:
- Do not allow your dog to eat or drink anything for twelve hours
- Give your dog ice cubes to lick. This will soothe his stomach and help to prevent dehydration.
- Wait for the vomiting to stop, after which you should give your dog cooked chicken and rice.
- Ideally you should also offer your dog chicken broth to help deal with dehydration.
- If the diarrhea and vomiting persist after 24 hours, take the dog to a vet.
If your dog is not vomiting:
- Do not allow your dog to eat anything solid. Instead, restrict his food intake to just water.
- Keep giving him clean water to drink which will help to keep dehydration at bay.
- Only allow your dog to eat boiled chicken and white rice until the stool consistency becomes normal again.
- Keep observing your dog’s stool. If the consistency does not improve after 24 hours, or if you see any signs of blood, please consult a vet immediately.
Reasons behind diarrhea in dogs
There are many reasons why your dog should suffer from persistent diarrhea. Here is a list of main reasons:
- Intestinal infections
- Bacterial infections
- Parasitic infections
- Food allergies
- Undigested food
- Food that has gone off
- Poor absorption of food
- Infections in the digestive system
- Irritable bowels
- Poor metabolism
In simple cases, a fecal exam will help you determine the cause of the problem. In more complicated cases an ultrasound or colonoscopy may be required.
You can help to prevent diarrhea in your dogs by:
- Not allowing your dog to scavenge
- Checking his food to make sure that it is fresh
- Keeping his deworming sessions up-to-date
- Not allowing him to eat bones