In the course of the dog’s life, they may encounter diarrhea. The condition will run for one to three days and should go away with some medication. However, when should the ailment be considered severe? And when should you bring your pet to the veterinarian?
Understandably, pet owners rush their dogs to the vet when they see soft or watery stool. For the most part, dog diarrhea should not be a cause for concern. There are plenty of remedies that will relieve your dogs of their discomfort. You can do it at home, and you do not have to spend money on the vet.
Common Causes of Diarrhea in Dogs
Young pups are most likely to be brought to the vet for diarrhea. According to this study, 11% of one-year-old dogs and below were brought to clinics for diarrhea treatment.
Here are the most common causes of why your dog may suffer from diarrhea:
- Infection — Young dogs are susceptible to bacterial or viral infection, which may cause diarrhea.
- Parasites — Parasitic worms inside your dog will irritate their digestive tract. Both the small and large bowels will be affected. You need to deworm the dog to prevent it from happening again.
- Stress — If your dog is under too much anxiety, diarrhea is a common side effect.
- Changes in diet — A puppy is vulnerable to the risks associated with a sudden change in diet. Some breeds are especially at risk. Yorkies, for instance, are notorious for having a sensitive stomach.
- Metabolic changes — Diseases involving the thyroid, liver, and pancreas may result in an upset stomach.
- Medication — Some dogs may negatively react to any new drug.
There are two cases of diarrhea to watch out for:
- Acute Diarrhea — It happens when your dog is relatively healthy, and then you suddenly observe them lose appetite, be lethargic, and excreting soft stool. In most cases, you do not have to bring your dog to the vet. You can treat your pet with some medication and a little rest.
- Chronic Diarrhea — Chronic diarrhea lasts for about three to five days, and it is typically recurring. There is also prolonged diarrhea, which could last for up to a month or even more. It is considered a serious condition, and you should bring your dog to the vet right away. Prolonged diarrhea could be a symptom of some form of cancer, liver failure, pancreatic disease, hookworm, or inflammatory bowel disease.
When Should You Bring Your Dog to the Vet?
In the case of dog diarrhea, you visit the medical professional when:
- The dog is young (two years old or younger).
- The dog is old (six for large breeds and seven years for small breeds).
- Your pet has a pre-existing condition.
- The stool is very watery or extremely dark.
- The stool contains blood or mucus.
- They are also vomiting.
- The dog is in extreme discomfort and pain.
- They are very restless.
- They are lethargic.
Any of those conditions warrant a visit to the vet. Barring those conditions, you make sure to feed your dog regularly so they can get the nutrition they need. Second, you need to boost fiber intake. Most people do not know that fiber is also beneficial for pets with diarrhea. You should also give them over-the-counter medications like Imodium and Pepcid, and check their condition religiously.