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10 Leading Causes of Diarrhea in Dogs

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Diarrhea in dogs is a common issue that almost everyone with a canine companion will experience sooner or later. This condition occurs when there is too much fluid in the feces. It usually involves increased frequency of defecation. When diarrhea strikes your dog, you may have some clean-up to do in your home, but you will also most certainly be worried about your furry friend, and will probably be asking yourself what caused your dog . Below we dive into the most common causes of diarrhea in dogs so you can know what to do to help your dog:

1. Dietary Indiscretion

The most common cause of diarrhea in dogs is what veterinarians call dietary indiscretion. This means that the dog has eaten something other than normal dog food. Leftovers, food that is partly rotten, grease from the barbecue grill, and more: many dogs love to get into and eat what they shouldn't, and it often leaves them with diarrhea.

2. Parasites

Parasites are frequently diagnosed in dogs with diarrhea, especially puppies. Hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms and whipworms are all parasites that cause dog diarrhea. Coccidia and giardia are single-celled organisms that are common causes of diarrhea in dogs as well.

3. Viral Infections

Viral infections of the gastrointestinal system can cause diarrhea in dogs. The most common of these are parvovirus, distemper virus, and coronavirus. These illnesses are all more common in very young puppies or, in the cases of parvovirus and distemper, unvaccinated dogs.

4. Bacterial Infections

Salmonella, E.coli, Clostridia, and Campylobacter are among the most common of the bacteria that cause intestinal infections and diarrhea in dogs. They are most often diagnosed in very young dogs and those that have conditions that cause immunosuppression. Dogs on raw food diets may be more susceptible to bacterial infections than other dogs, as well.

5. Stress-Induced Diarrhea

Dogs that experience stress often develop diarrhea. This is most common in puppies just coming into a new home or dogs in shelters. It is also a common occurrence when new animals are brought into the home or a person in the household leaves or has a new schedule.

6. Sudden Diet Changes

Dogs that experience a quick change in diet often develop diarrhea (and sometimes vomiting). This happens commonly when people feel that their dog is bored with a certain diet or when they introduce new treats. If a dog's diet needs to be changed, it should always be done gradually so as not to induce gastrointestinal upset.

7. Food Allergies

Food intolerances, sensitivities, and allergies may cause diarrhea in dogs. Skin involvement, such as scratching, redness, and hair loss is also commonly seen in association with these conditions. One example of a food intolerance is that many dogs are lactose intolerant and develop diarrhea when given milk products.

8. Pancreatitis

Inflammation of the pancreas, or pancreatitis, causes diarrhea in many dogs that suffer from it. This condition often causes vomiting and lack of appetite. Pancreatitis is commonly caused when dogs get into or are given a food item that is high in fat. If the dog is not used to this, pancreatitis can occur as a result. This causes pain, diarrhea, vomiting, decreased appetite, and sometimes other organ involvement.

9. Foreign Bodies

If a dog ingests something that isn't edible, it is called a foreign body, and this can cause diarrhea (and often vomiting and decreased appetite). A foreign body may be a ball, stick, rock, toy, cloth, or any other non-food object that a dog may eat.

10. Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, is caused by a high number of inflammatory cells in a dog's gastrointestinal tract. It isn't clear what the exact cause of IBD in dogs is, but it may be an immune response in the body to parasites, allergies, bacteria, or something else. Vomiting is a classic sign of IBD in dogs, as is chronic diarrhea.

This list is not all-inclusive, so if your dog develops diarrhea, call your veterinarian for guidance. You may be able to give a bland diet at home for a period of time to see if it resolves. However, if the diarrhea goes on for more than 48 hours or if it is accompanied by blood, vomiting, loss of appetite, or extreme straining, your dog should be seen by a veterinarian right away.

Holistic Remedies

If you'd like to read further about dog diarrhea, check out our in-depth article here written by our veterinarian. We've also written another article on our blog where we dive into how you can use pumpkin to naturally treat dog diarrhea.маки�?ж круги под глазами �?крыть�?амые мощные планшеты 2019

Meet Our Expert

Dr. Janice Huntingford

Pet Wellbeing's own Dr. Jan has been in veterinary practice for over 30 years. Since receiving her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, she's founded two veterinary clinics and lectured extensively on pet herbal therapy, nutraceuticals, acupuncture, rehabilitation and pain management.

Dr. Jan has studied extensively in both conventional and holistic modalities, helping us to formulate all of our supplements. She is an essential part of Pet Wellbeing.

And lucky for us, she's only one of the great team of people who make Pet Wellbeing so special.

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