Dog Constipation: What is it and how to prevent and treat it?

Dog Constipation

The words “dog constipated” can cause worry and fear for dog owners. Not only this, but dog constipation can be just as unpleasant for your pet as dog diarrhea. The inability to rid the body of waste and toxins can cause a series of problems and conditions. The build up of toxins can cause bloating, loss of appetite and abdominal pain. If your dog does manage to have a bowel movement while constipated, likely through strain, the resulting stool will be hard and impacted. While dog constipation can cause worry and fear, the good news is, there’s no need to panic. Canine constipation is not a serious condition and there are a number of remedies and preventative measures that you can take to spare your pooch the misery of dog constipation. Your dog's constipation can be caused by a number of things, but one of the main causes of dog constipation (and even puppy constipation) is diet, specifically, feeding your dog low-quality, processed foods that are lacking in fiber. Your dog's constipation can also be caused by eating trash, chew toys, bones, and sticks. These types of materials are not easily digestible, so they can cause blockages in the dogs digestive tract. Avoid excessive exposure to chew toys, bones, and sticks and feed your dog high quality, unprocessed, fiber rich food. This will help to prevent frequent recurring dog constipation. Other preventative measures include mixing oat bran in with your dog’s food or grape-nuts. Milk helps to lubricate the colon, so this can be used to relieve dog constipation and a tablespoon or two of pumpkin can be helpful as well. If your dog is constipated, you should call your vet immediately for help. In the meantime, you can give your dog a mild laxative or a tablespoon of mineral oil. With your doctor’s approval, you can also perform an enema. This will help to remove the hardened stool. When it comes to dogs and constipation, prevention is everything. In addition to the preventative measures listed above, you can also control the dog’s eating habits by only allowing him to eat at certain times of the day. This means you cannot leave the pet's food sitting around all day. Also avoid feeding the pet table scraps and skip the snacks. Snacks can cause any number of digestive problems and weight-gain. Also, exercise your pet regularly. This also helps with digestion and weight control. If you notice any of the following symptoms of dog constipation, contact your vet immediately. • Straining while trying to have a bowel movement • Avoidance of his regular food • Changes in elimination habits • Sudden lethargy • Parasites in the stool • Blood in the stool • Tenderness in the stomach