Sad dog on couch

Diarrhoea

Dogs and puppies can get diarrhoea for many different reasons. It can be mild, moderate or severe.

What is diarrhoea?

It’s loose, unformed stools. In most cases there’s a large volume of stool and an increased number of bowel movements.

What causes diarrhoea?

The most common causes of diarrhoea in dogs are:

  • indigestible foods - garbage and decayed food, dead animals, grass, plants, plastic, wood, paper and other foreign materials
  • intestinal parasites and - infectious diseases. roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, threadworms and giardia, bacteria and viruses e.g. canine parvovirus
  • drug side affects – aspirin, heart medications, dewormers, antibiotics
  • emotions – stress and excitement from going to the vet, a dog show, etc

How to treat diarrhoea

Treatment will depend on the cause of the diarrhoea, so consult your vet.

If the diarrhoea is acute, and your dog seems otherwise fit and healthy, your vet might decide to restrict or withhold food for a day or so. You should still give your dog water. After the fasting period, you can re-introduce foods, but they will usually need to be bland for a few more days.