Top tips to spot and treat dog constipation
Identifying the symptoms
Your dog can’t tell you when something’s wrong but, as a caring owner, you will probably notice straight away when something’s not right.
As the person who makes their pet’s business your business on a daily basis, it won’t take long before it occurs to you that your dog is suffering from constipation.
Every dog is different, of course – that’s why we love them – but there are several ways to tell if dog constipation is a factor.
If your dog has not passed a stool in more than two days, or is having trouble doing so, then there could be a problem.
Your dog may cry in pain or pass mucus, rather than a firm stool, which is when you should see a vet.
It is probably nothing to worry about but constipation could be a symptom of another issue so it is best to seek expert advice.
Possible causes of dog constipation
Dogs can become constipated for a variety of reasons, most commonly an imbalance in their diet.
Just like us, dogs need to be hydrated, to eat plenty of fibre and enjoy a good amount of physical exercise to stay regular.
Another common cause could be that your dog has eaten something he or she shouldn’t – such as a stone or a chew toy.
If your dog has become constipated since starting a course of medication, this could be another cause.
Medical issues can also be behind the problem, including:
- An enlarged prostate gland
- Swollen anal sacs
- A tumour on the rectum causing an obstruction
- An orthopedic problem causing your pet pain
- Neurological disorder
What to do if your dog is constipated
The best bet is to see a vet. Not only will this be your dog’s best chance of a quick recovery but it will also give you peace of mind.
Your vet may have to perform an enema but, in most cases, will recommend measures you can take at home to help your dog recover.
These might include:
- More exercise
- Adding fibre to your dogs diet with foods such as bran or canned fruits suitable for dogs
- More water
- A laxative or stool softener
What if the problem goes untreated?
It is important to get the issue treated as soon as you notice any constipation as it could lead to further problems.
It is, of course, also not very nice for your dog. A build-up could result in discomfort, lethargy, a loss of appetite and vomiting.