As is the case with us humans, the quality of the transit in dogs East highly variable. When some have three or even four daily stools, others have only one and are doing very well.
Dr. Pierre Fabing, veterinarian: Most of the time, an adult dog has a bowel movement between one and three times a day, with a daily average of two bowel movements. For puppies, it’s usually a bit more.
There are quite a few causes of constipation in dogs.
– a diet that is too low in fiber can be responsible for constipation. “While most kibbles are well balanced, some may provide an insufficient amount of fiber and cause constipation. If in doubt, ask your veterinarian for his opinion”, insists Dr. Fabing.
– Conversely, a diet that is really too high in fiber is also likely to cause a blockage, responsible for temporary constipation, although this is rarer.
The signs of constipation are quite numerous and visible:
These symptoms can be accompanied by more general symptoms: swollen stomach, stomach pain, depression, even vomiting.
If mild and chronic constipation is not an emergency situation, acute constipation impacting the general condition of the dog is!
Dr. Fabing: A dog that no longer has a bowel movement, seems down, listless and/or is vomiting, must be seen urgently by a veterinarian.
A healthy dog may not have a bowel movement for 24 to 48 hours., or even 3 days, without it being worrying, if his general condition is not affected and he is in good shape. “We must also differentiate a dog that is constipated because its transit is blocked, from a dog that has no stool because it does not eat, or eats very little,” recalls the veterinarian.
The most effective natural remedy for treating occasional constipation in dogs is paraffin oil. As Dr. Pierre Fabing explains, “paraffin oil is a good natural remedy because it is not absorbed by the body at all, so it remains in the digestive tract and lubricates the stool and the intestinal walls.
Add one drizzle of olive oil in his bowl can also be effective, although it is digested by the body, it can nevertheless help to soften the stool.
To improve chronic constipation, it is simply recommended toadd fiber to the daily ration of the dog, ideally in the form of cooked green vegetables : green beans or zucchini for example.
And for dogs with a naturally slow transit, there are special fibre-enriched kibbles.
If natural remedies are not enough, a consultation with the veterinarian is essential. “You have to be careful with self-medication, and check first if there is no real obstruction of the transit linked to the presence of a foreign body”, insists Dr. Fabing.
The veterinarian will therefore start by doing a digital rectal examination to assess the size of the plug, possibly followed by a ultrasound or x-ray,even a blood test in case of suspected illness.
If there is no actual obstruction: prokinetics or some laxatives suitable for dogs will be prescribed, depending on the type of constipation.
“In extreme cases, we proceed to a enema under anesthesiaand in the most severe cases, we can go as far as surgery,” adds the specialist.
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