If you own a dog, you will be fully aware of their bowel movements. If you have noticed your dog not going as much or not sticking to their regular pooping or feeding schedule, they could be constipated. Knowing your dog is constipated is important, as it can cause other health problems and maybe a sign of a health problem. Below we look at how to spot dog constipation, the causes, and what to do next.
The Main Signs Your Dog Is Constipated
There are obvious signs of constipation in dogs, the most obvious being that they don’t poop at all. If they do go, have a look at their poop. If it isn’t like their usual poop and seems small, dry, or hard, this is a big sign of dog constipation. When they do go, watch their posture. If they seem to be straining and finding it difficult, it is likely constipation is the cause. This can also show up in other ways, for instance, a constipated dog may start eating less as they feel bloated.
Check if your dog’s stomach looks swollen; they might growl or whimper if you go to touch it. This could be a sign of severe constipation in dogs, known as obstipation. It could also be a problem with their colon or some kind of blockage in their digestive tract. If left untreated, any of these conditions could be serious.
On average, and depending on your dog, they should poop one to three times a day.
The Main Causes of Dog Constipation
Now we know the signs, it is good to understand the main causes of dog constipation. This can help us to cure our dog’s constipation, without the need for a vet. If you follow this advice and notice things aren’t getting better, or notice any of the serious signs listed above, see your vet straight away.
1. Not Enough Exercise
Dogs need plenty of exercises, especially if they are an active breed such as a Dalmatian or Border Collie. These breeds of dogs need around one to two hours of exercise every day. Other dogs should be getting at least 30 minutes a day. Just like in humans, dogs need exercise to keep everything moving and in working order.
If your dog is too sedentary, this could be affecting their bowel movements and causing constipation. If your dog has a health condition that makes it hard to exercise for long, such as arthritis, do what you can to make it easier for them.
An obvious one but what your dog eats will have a say in how he poops. Just like humans, dogs need plenty of fiber and other nutrients to use the toilet as they should. If they don’t have a lot of fiber in their diet, or they eat a lot of dry foods, you may need to look at changing this to improve their constipation.
Anything containing a lot of fiber, such as whole grains and veggies, will improve hydration, as they contain electrolytes. Fiber is also prebiotic, meaning for your dog, it can stimulate the growth of good bacteria in the gut, leading to easier and softer poops. Sometimes your dog could eat poop so it is very nessesassy to give a proper training.
3. Side Effects of Medication
If your pouch is on any medications, it may be that they are suffering from side effects. Constipation is one of the most common side effects of medication, especially if they are taking diuretics, iron supplements, or allergy tablets. If you think their medication is to blame, speak to your vet. If you aren’t sure, check the label on their medication.
To treat your dog’s constipation, follow these remedies:
- Add probiotics into their diet
- Make sure they are getting plenty of water, as this can also cause dehydration
- Introduce wet and organic pet food
- Exercise with your dog often
- Seek vet treatment if you still can’t treat your dog’s constipation
Changing your dog’s diet to include organic dog supplements can help treat their constipation and leads to healthier bowel movements. Native Pet offers belly and bladder probiotics for dogs, which includes organic and tasty foods such as beef bone broth and pumpkin seed.
Organic dog supplements are better for the digestive system, as they are derived from nature. These ingredients are great if you are switching your dog’s diet as probiotics and pumpkin can help to keep their digestive tract healthy during the transition from one dog food to another.
Most dog constipation can be cured within a few days. Dog constipation is common, and your dog will likely get constipation at least one point in its life. Regularly check their bowel movements for any signs of constipation.