Puppy poop consistency speaks volume about her current state of health.
The importance of monitoring puppy poop consistency both in frequency and the form of her stools cannot be overstated.
Any abnormalities even as trivial as pooping twice instead of her usual three times a day warrant at least close monitoring. In other cases, a visit to the vet is in order.
Normally, puppies eliminate soft but well-formed stools. Temporary diarrhea, the frequent passing of abnormally soft, unformed stools does happen sometimes but shouldn’t be allowed longer than 2 days due to risk of dehydration.
Temporary diarrhea or hard, dry stools can often be eliminated through dietary adjustment. Sudden change in diet or overfeeding are some common dietary causes.
Liver is rich in vitamin A but eating too much of it will lead to vitamin A overdose or hypervitaminosis A. Feeding liver or commercial dog food with liver contents more than once a week is a easily overlooked diarrhea cause. Ingredients on commercial dog food must be checked thoroughly for the presence of liver and considered into your puppy’s overall diet.
Chills and rare deficiency of vitamin B may also cause temporary diarrhea. Vitamin B can easily be supplemented into your puppy's diet through green vegetables, whole grains, nutritional yeast, nuts or dairy products.
Prolonged diarrhea (lasting more than 2 days) is a symptom for many diseases often linked with infection. Below is a list of some common diseases that often leads to diarrhea not just to puppies but adult dogs as well.
Understand that the causes of diarrhea are numerous and the examples here are no way exhaustive.
Some are more severe than others, all require professional medical attention.
Feeding a diarrhea puppy
Exclude red meat, liver content and bone meal food for 2 to 3 days. Give your puppy easy to digest food such as boneless cooked fish, chicken breast or steamed rice.
Signs of constipation include small, inconsistent or lack of stools elimination. These symptoms are usually accompanied by apparent straining and discomfort during potty times. Sometimes even vomiting.
Constipation are often the result of puppy’s diet. Excessive or exclusive feeding of dry food and not having enough fiber are 2 common dietary reasons.
Include fiber-rich food such as carrots, broccoli, apples and pumpkins into her diet will help tremendously in preventing constipation.
Exercising is another great way to improve bowel movement and deter constipation, adding yet another incentive to the already long list of benefits in ensuring your puppy has sufficient exercise.
Overall, constipation is more common especially in older dogs and are generally considered less pressing compare to diarrhea. Prolonged or frequent recurrence of constipation however, is a sign of a more serious condition. Obstructed annual glands and abdominal tumors (though not common for puppies) are among the more severe causes.
Excessive fat and lack of bile usually results in pale stools.
Drugs or supplement may also affect consistency and colour-for example; iron produces black stools.
Visiting the vet
Accurate information such as her last meal, her diet for the last few days, her potty patterns and a sample of her stools will help your veterinarian for a faster and more accurate diagnose.
Ending on a (even) more serious note
Here’s some rule-of-thumb on puppy poop consistency that absolutely requires your vet’s immediate attention, don’t wait!
Above all else, use human judgment. Trust your gut feeling. If it tells you to pay the vet a visit sooner rather than later, do it!
It’s better to over-react a little than regret not acting sooner.