Dog Diarrhea Explained

Dog diarrhea is most unpleasant and is usually indicative of a problem going on within the dog. While most dog diarrhea is easy to treat, it usually involves a trip to the veterinarian's office.

Dog Diarrhea Exposed

Dog diarrhea is a rapid movement of digested material in the intestines that can cause loose stool, a frequency of bowel movements and an increase in the amount of stool that is produced. Most of the time, the need to release the diarrhea is very urgent and dogs tend to have accidents in the house. Diarrhea is a result of excessive water in the stool and can cause dehydration, electrolyte problems and acid-base imbalances.

Causes and Treatment of Dog Diarrhea

There are many different reasons in which dog diarrhea can occur.

Eating something that they shouldn't, such as when they are rooting through the garbage, can cause many dogs to have diarrhea. The treatment for this is usually withholding food for a day and then giving a bland diet, such as chicken and rice or ground beef and rice until the diarrhea resolves. If you switch your dog's food too quickly, she can get diarrhea from the abrupt change. The treatment for this cause of diarrhea is withholding the food, feeding a bland diet, then slowly switching back to the original food.

Parasites are a common cause of dog diarrhea, especially in puppies. Roundworms, whipworms and hookworms, along with coccidia and giardia, are all common causes of diarrhea. The worms can usually be treated with a wormer, such as Drontal, at intermittent doses. The coccidia is usually taken care of with the use of sulfa antibiotics, while giardia requires metronidazole, albendazole or febantel. The dog diarrhea will usually resolve once the parasites are out of the body. If the dog diarrhea is severe enough, the doctor may prescribe the use of metronidazole to help stop the diarrhea and may give subcutaneous fluids.

Idiopathic hemorrhagic gastroenteritis is a serious condition that can cause diarrhea in dogs. Small dogs are prone to getting this illness, which can also cause bloody vomit and diarrhea, depression, stomach and back pain and dark and tarry stool. Administering intravenous fluids, along with antibiotics and withholding food and water can usually resolve the idiopathic hemorrhagic gastroenteritis.

Viruses can also cause dog diarrhea, while they usually effect puppies who have not been fully vaccinated. Parvovirus, distemper and coronavirus can all be quite dangerous and cause diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy and loss of appetite. Intravenous catheterization and antibiotics are usually given to help treat the viruses.

For dogs who seem to always have diarrhea, a change of diet may be in order. Some dogs can develop food intolerance or sensitivities which enable them from being able to properly digest certain foods, such as gluten. Switching to a food that has alternative ingredients may help to stop the chronic dog diarrhea.