Remedy for Dog Constipation
5 minutes read
When it comes to health problems in dogs, one of the most common ones is that of Constipation. Constipation occurs more commonly and frequently than you might expect. A dog cannot excrete stool on a consistent or proper basis.
There are numerous reasons for a dog to contact constipation and contrary to what some people might tell you, it can be easily treated. However, then again, certain dogs develop chronic constipation. The latter can lead to obstipation in dogs, which is where the dog’s stool becomes harder, compacter, and drier. It becomes so bad that the dog eventually can’t pass stool /defecate at all.
Causes of Constipation in Dogs
Dog waste is filled with electrolytes and water and an automatic muscular motion (peristaltic waves) moves this waste through the intestines onwards to the colon. The waste is excreted from the colon after water is absorbed into the colon. At least, this is what happens in normal digestion.
In an abnormal function, the colon continues to absorb water and as a result, the stool becomes harder and drier, and even more compact. This is what we call slowed or impaired digestion in dogs.
There are some common causes for constipation in dogs. These can be listed as follows for your information and convenience:
- Less exercise
- A diet that isn’t proper
- Diet without sufficient fiber
- Items like bones, garbage, plants, gravel, etc. can also cause blockage
- Sometimes, excessive self-grooming by dogs leads to hair getting accumulated in the stool
- Constipation can appear more readily amongst aging dogs
- Hypothyroidism is also responsible for constipation in dogs
- Constipation is common amongst dogs with renal issues
- An enlarged prostate can also lead to constipation
- Dogs with anal gland problems can also have frequent constipation
- Excessive dehydration is responsible for constipation as well Besides these, other causes include specific medications, surgery, stress, a trauma in the pelvic region, spinal injury, etc.
Symptoms of Canine Constipation
There are certain symptoms that you can look for if you suspect that your dog has constipation. These can be listed as follows:
- If your dog hasn’t defecated in several days
- If the stool develops a hard and pebble-like consistency
- If the dog produces stool that isn’t commensurate with the large strain applied
- If the dog seems to be in discomfort and defecates painfully and with difficulty
- If there is mucus or blood in the stool
The colon’s main purpose is to store waste. It can even store it up to a few weeks so don’t worry if your dog doesn’t pass stool for a day or two. But if your dog doesn’t defecate for several days then you need to be concerned as it could be due to constipation.
Can Constipation happen to Any Dog?
Yes, constipation is something that can affect any dog. However, older dogs are more susceptible to developing it. Usually, it is insufficient electrolytes or a problem with the kidneys that is to blame. In our opinion, constipation occurs if your dog doesn’t drink the daily minimum requirement of water or doesn’t exercise as much as is needed. Plus, a diet that doesn’t contain a significant amount of fiber can also lead to this condition.
Treatments and Remedies for Constipation in Dogs
You will be pleased to know that most of the time; constipation in dogs can be treated easily at home. There are many home remedies that you can try to treat constipation in your canine pal. But, it is best that you still consult your vet before resorting to any of these remedies. That is because constipation can be an indicator of other more egregious health conditions in dogs.
The home remedies that you can use for your dog are listed as follows:
- Bran cereal
- Canned Pumpkin
- Siblin, Metamucil, or some other product of the sort
- More water intake
- Extra exercising
- Feed your dog canned dog food as it increases moisture
If constipation persists or is chronic, then contact your veterinarian. He or she will make certain adjustments to your dog’s diet and recommend some treatments. These can be from amongst the following:
- A diet that is low on residue. Such diets are most effective against persistent constipation and are great since it means that your dog will eat more nutrients. This will result in the passing of fewer amounts of waste into the colon. This diet is better than any other one that you might feed your dog but is only available from your vet. But hey, nothing is too difficult to arrange for our four-legged pals right?
- Laxatives are great for an immediate resolution to a tough constipation spell. However, extended use of such medication can lead to dehydration in dogs and render its use unsafe. So, consult your vet before giving it to your dog.
- The vet might remove the stool manually if the colon becomes impacted
- The vet might recommend Enemas but the latter can be highly uncomfortable for your dog. This is a procedure that shouldn’t be imposed on dogs as most of them can’t or won’t tolerate it. An enema can be toxic and detrimental to the dog’s health if administered improperly. So, best get a vet that is well versed in these procedures.
- Your vet might also recommend medications that can block enzymes for removing constipation. It is also possible for him or her to recommend medications that can stimulate the nerves for this purpose.
You really should not consider constipation as a trivial problem. If this condition is left untreated, then it can lead to a condition in dogs called megacolon. The latter is indicative of a condition where the colon becomes uncomfortably enlarged and the dog becomes incapable of passing stool. This can lead to further serious complications which may require surgery. We recommend that you make it a habit to take your dog out for exercise daily. Also, make sure that your dog has access to clean and fresh water in plentiful quantity. A well-balanced diet will also go a long way towards ensuring that your dog remains safe from constipation.