My Dog has Diarrhea… What Can I Do?
Diarrhea is the increased frequency of bowel movements. This situation produces a greater amount of fecal matter. This malaise is usually very recurrent in animals and if not treated in time, it can trigger a bigger problem. Below we share some advice to avoid this type of ailment in dogs.
What are diarrhea symptoms?
Diarrhea can be caused by several reasons. In many cases, animals usually present this malaise because they ate some food that is in poor condition or that increases their bowel movements.
Other causes can be environmental. Often, dogs’ curiosity can cause many problems.
Sometimes they tend to sniff or lick products that can be toxic. That’s why it’s very important to be aware of your little friend’s movements.
Do not give your dog any medication if it has not been indicated by your veterinarian. To diagnose diarrhea, the specialist will indicate a series of laboratory tests and other tests that help determine the discomfort.
The first studies the veterinarian will do will consist of a complete physical examination, which includes taking the dog’s temperature, checking the heartbeat, looking inside its mouth, feeling its abdomen, checking if it is dehydrated, and performing a rectal exam.
In all cases of diarrhea, the veterinarian will also recommend fecal examination to see if there are parasites such as roundworms.
If a bacterial infection is suspected, a faecal culture is performed. In cases of certain viral diseases, such as parvovirus, other stool tests can help with the diagnosis.
X-rays are appropriate if a tumor or anatomical problem is suspected. Other imaging diagnoses, such as ultrasound, may also be helpful. For some conditions, the only way to make an accurate diagnosis is to perform a biopsy.
How is diarrhea treated?
Preventing is the best way to preserve your pet’s health. In this sense, it is very important that you observe your little friend’s feces.
If they are bloody or black, pay close attention. If you suspect he may have eaten something toxic or poisonous, or if you notice he’s depressed, it’s likely that his bowels aren’t working properly.
In many cases of diarrhea, it is recommended that dogs do not eat food for at least 24 hours. It is also advisable to provide small amounts of water frequently.
It is best to eat a light diet, such as rice cooked in small amounts. If the diarrhea does not recur, the animal should slowly return to its normal diet.
In some cases of diarrhea it may be necessary to permanently modify the diet. It is likely that certain ingredients should be avoided, added fiber to the diet, and decreased fat intake to increase digestion.
If the animal has intestinal parasites, the veterinarian will prescribe the appropriate medication. It is also important to try to eliminate the worm eggs from the environment. For this it is important that the spaces you are used to visiting with your pet are cleaned and disinfected.
If the animal has an infection caused by bacteria, antibiotics should be given . This treatment may last up to two weeks.
How to prevent diarrhea in dogs?
To prevent diarrhea it is important that dogs get the necessary vaccinations. You must also make sure they are free of parasites.
In this sense, don’t let your friend have access to garbage or eat food in poor condition.
When you go out for a walk with your pet, watch what it eats on the street, especially if it eats vegetable products or drinks water from puddles or fountains.
Don’t allow him to smell or eat the feces of other animals and minimize the stress around your dog.
If you decide to change food, it is best to introduce it gradually. The most effective thing is to mix it with the current food to ensure an easier transition to your pet’s digestive tract.
Keep your dog with proper hygiene and clean the spaces where he sleeps, eats and plays.
Disinfect water and food containers, always leaving clean, fresh water at his disposal.