Why Your Dog Has Diarrhea: 5 Possibilities

If you notice that your dog has diarrhea, you will have to determine the cause for this condition and establish whether you need to see a vet or you can treat your dog at home. In less severe cases a change in your dog's diet will cure him.

Diarrhea may be of two types: acute (lasting for up to 5 days) and chronic diarrhea (which is more severe and lasts for extended periods of time).

1. Unusual "Diet"

One of the most frequent causes of diarrhea in dogs is the fact that they are curious and eat rocks, wood, garbage and other things that don't agree with their stomachs. Consequently, the dog will have diarrhea, which is the body's normal reaction to an unusual diet. The diarrhea is meant to clean the dog's body and get rid of the toxins that were ingested.

The diarrhea treatment can be administered at home. You can prepare a special formula, cooked at home, to avoid the additives that exist in canned pet foods. This formula can contain some lean meat (turkey or chicken) and rice or sweet potatoes. Add supplements of fiber or some canned pumpkin, which help the digestion and hardens the stool.

2. Diarrhea Causing Parasites

Dogs that have parasites will have symptoms such as diarrhea or vomiting. The diarrhea is caused by the irritation of the lower intestine- where the parasites are usually located. The diarrhea caused by parasites will last for longer periods of time and persists even after you change the diet of your dog.

Some of the parasites that cause diarrhea are Giardia, worms, hookworms, roundworms or coccidia. These parasites may cause stool discoloration and sometimes even blood in the stool.

Each of these parasites has treatment options. De-wormers are the most common drugs that are prescribed. Additional dietary restrictions may be needed. Talk to your veterinary doctor and he will indicate a proper treatment for each of these parasites. The diarrhea will stop as soon as the parasites are eliminated.

If your puppy has diarrhea and it is caused by worms, he may need special attention and even hospitalization. Diarrhea cause severe dehydration and can cause death in puppies and dogs with a compromised immune system.

3. Bacteria

Ingested bacteria can cause diarrhea in dogs. Salmonella or Clostridium perfringens are two types of bacteria that cause infections and lead to diarrhea.

4. Food Allergies

Dogs can have negative reactions to food. If they are allergic to something, he will have diarrhea or vomit. Treat this condition by giving him dry food that contains probiotics. You will also want to observe which food makes your dog sick. However, it's difficult to establish what exactly causes the allergic reaction in your dog, so you will need to see a vet. He will be able to tell you what foods your dog is allergic to and prescribe a diet that will agree with your pet.

5. Severe Illnesses

Diarrhea may indicate a more severe illness. If your dog has abdominal pain, blood and mucus in the stool and is lethargic this could indicate a severe illness. These symptoms usually last for more than 3 days.