Constipation can be a problem for dogs, just as much as for humans. Constipation is basically when a dog needs to defecate, but cannot. Please note if a dog is trying to urinate and cannot, it should be taken to a veterinarian immediately, but there are some home remedies you can try for a dog that is constipated.
What Causes Constipation in Dogs?
- Diet Change (although diarrhea is more common)
- Low quality food
- Forcing a dog to "hold it" too long
- Excessive grooming
- Something stuck in the digestive tract (toy, rawhide)
- Kidney disease
- Prostate problems in male dogs
- Tumors or other health concerns
- Lack of Exercise
How to Treat a Dog with Constipation
Assuming the constipation problem is not medical, which would require a veterinarian's attention (swallowed toy, prostate problem, etc.) you you can try to remedy the situation yourself. If the problem continues for more than a few days or your dog starts showing other health symptoms, please seek veterinarian attention.
Taking the dog for a walk, or run, will often help stimulate their bowels.
Encouraging the dog to drink more will keep them regular too.
If the dog does not normally eat canned food this can sometimes do the trick, if they do eat canned food, adding some water to it may help.
In most constipation cases more is needed than the above ideas.
Veterinarians and pet supply stores do sell stool softeners for constipated pets, follow directions carefully, do not over medicate.
Mineral oil may also be given, mixed with the food, contact your veterinarian in regards to dosage.
Giving the dog a boost of fiber will often be very effective, the two may ways of doing this are by giving the dog either a 100% bran cereal (as for people) or canned pumpkin. Only a little is needed. This should not be pumpkin pie filling, just proper canned pumpin.
A small dog with constipation problems might only need half a teaspoon of canned pumpkin, where as a larger dog might require a tablespoon full. This can be given twice a day. You can portion out the extra pumpkin onto a pie sheet and freeze, then put the pieces into a bag for future use (it will go rotten if kept in the can). You might even give your dog one piece a week for regularity.
If your dog's constipation lasts more than a few days remember to see a veterinarian. If constipation seems like a regular problem for your dog check his diet, and see a veterinarian to rule out other health concerns for which constipation might be a symptom.