When to Take A Puppy With Diarrhea to the Vet

A puppy with diarrhea can cause its owner considerable concern. Viruses, bacteria, parasites or food changes all cause diarrhea in puppies. When to take a puppy with diarrhea to the vet depends upon a number of factors.

New Situations Can Cause Diarrhea

If you have recently adopted a puppy, the change in environment, feeding new food or being away from its mother and littermates may cause a temporary case of diarrhea. If your puppy appears alert, has a good appetite, drinks plenty of water and doesn't play too recklessly, observation may be all that is needed.

More Serious Causes

If the diarrhea continues more than two days and/or your puppy exhibits the following signs, take him to the vet:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Profuse diarrhea
  • Defecating multiple times throughout the day
  • Weakness or lethargy
  • Fever (greater than 102.5 °F)
  • Painful or distended abdomen
  • Vomiting
  • Passing worms in stool

In addition, if you suspect your puppy has eaten spoiled food or a dead animal, or has ingested some other toxic substance, take him to the veterinarian. Bring a fresh, non-frozen sample of stool along so it can be examined for parasites or bacteria.