Unfortunately, diarrhoea is a problem most dogs will encounter at some point in their lives. Many dogs suffer regularly from this unpleasant digestive problem, causing them to have to relieve themselves more often, and giving their stools a liquid consistency. Here’s a 5-step list to help get you and your dog through this unpleasant experience and back to having fun together.
- Make sure it’s not a symptom of something more serious
If your dog’s diarrhoea lasts for more than 48 hours, there is blood in your dog’s stool, your dog vomits frequently, it shows signs of abdominal pain or has a fit of any kind, you should immediately take them to the vet, who should carry out blood and urine tests to determine the cause of the diarrhoea. If your puppy has diarrhoea, you should consult a vet after around 6 hours, as puppies are less developed and can quickly become very ill.
- Give your dog’s tummy a break
As soon as your dog produces a liquid stool, it is advisable to stop feeding them for at least one day, to let the digestive system recover and regenerate. Ensure that your dog receives plenty of fluids in the form of water that has been boiled and then chilled, or chamomile tea in order to replace the lost fluids through lose stools.
- Ease your dog back onto food
After 24 hours you can begin to feed your dog again, but it’s best to start with plain foods such as cooked rice and boiled, de-boned chicken. Ultimately, you may find it beneficial to switch your dog onto a specialist Vet Food for digestive problems. However, this should only be done following consultation with a vet and it is highly important to introduce new food gradually to prevent further stomach upset.
- Build your dog’s intestinal flora back up
Diarrhoea can often coincide with your dog’s stomach being stripped of friendly natural bacteria. If your dog has no friendly bacteria left in its stomach, it’s likely to suffer a relapse of diarrhoea when foods are reintroduced. Natural yoghurt contains pro-biotic bacteria and can often alone correct this imbalance. If that’s not enough however, try giving your dog a biologically active supplement.
- Prevent future bouts
Hopefully at this stage, the diarrhoea will just stop. If it does continue or reoccur however, this may be a sign that there is something in your dog’s environment that he or she is intolerant of or allergic to, in which case you need to determine the allergen. In addition, you can take several steps to prevent future bouts of diarrhoea, including dividing your dog’s meals up over several small meals a day, feeding your dog a diet with lower carb and fat content, avoiding sudden dietary changes, and checking the food’s use-by date.
Follow these 5 steps and hopefully you and your dog will be out getting into trouble again in no time!
Click here for further advice on how to cope with your dog’s allergies.