Dog Diarrhea

Dog diarrhea is a symptom of another health problem in your dog, and sometimes it can be a bit difficult to determine what is causing the diarrhea.

The real problem with diarrhea is the fact that it is not as common as you think it is. If your dog is having diarrhea, it's always a good idea to take the animal to the veterinarian.

Types of Diarrhea

The first thing you should understand about diarrhea is that dogs can have one of two different types.

Acute diarrhea lasts for several days up to a week. Most of the problems that cause acute diarrhea are easily fixed, although you will find it helpful to look for other symptoms.

Diarrhea itself is a very common symptom that can be caused by a variety of different things. If the diarrhea is acute, there will likely be other symptoms that will tell you and your vet exactly what is causing the diarrhea.

The second type of diarrhea dogs can suffer from is chronic diarrhea. This type of diarrhea lasts longer than a week, and it is caused by an underlying problem like a food allergy or another health condition.

Causes of Dog Diarrhea

Dogs can get diarrhea for many different reasons. The most common reasons are a change in diet or too much stress.

A change of diet may consist of either a different brand of dog food, an unusual treat, or even table scraps (whether you intended for the animal to eat them or not!)

It is not uncommon for dogs, and especially puppies, to have diarrhea for the first week or two after they move into a new home. This is caused by the stress of the new situation, and the best thing you can do for your dog is to keep him hydrated.

Puppies are especially prone to dehydration during bouts of diarrhea because of their small size. If the diarrhea is especially severe, then the vet may have to give the animal fluids through an IV.

Diarrhea can also be caused by many different types of diseases. Most of these diseases are easily cured, although there are a few that can be deadly.

The most common cause of diarrhea is parasitic diseases or worms. The vet can prescribe medication for these diseases.

Another common cause of dog diarrhea is Parvo, which is common in puppies that have not been vaccinated. Canine Parvovirus can be a deadly disease, and many dogs that get it do not recover.

Other common causes for diarrhea include distemper in dogs, coronavirus, hepatitis in dogs (all of which have vaccines available), and even canine irritable bowel syndrome and colitis.

Treatment for Dog Diarrhea

If you are certain that that the dog's diarrhea is caused by stress or a change in diet, the best thing you can do for him is to switch him to a bland diet.

Give the animal plain white rice and plain chicken mixed together. This will ensure that the animal gets the nutrients it needs to start feeling better.

If the dog diarrhea isn’t severe, then try removing all food for 24 hours and restricting the dog to water only. The day after, give the dog only boiled white rice and increase his food gradually after that.

Depending on the exact cause of the diarrhea, your vet will give you other instructions for treatment, but the most important thing is to keep your dog hydrated.

You may want to add unflavored Pedialyte to your dog’s water to ensure that he is getting the electrolytes you need to recover.

Return to Common Dog Health Problems

Return from Dog Diarrhea to our Yorkshire Terriers homepage