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Constipation in Dogs and How to Find Solutions

  • 12/08/2021

Constipation in dogs is a very uncomfortable problem both for the dog but for the dog owner as well. Nobody likes to set their dog suffering and constipation in dogs is a condition that can cause a lot of discomfort and distress for your dog. Luckily, there are things that can be done both to prevent and to relieve the condition. This article will give you tips on how to deal with constipation in dogs.

What is constipation in dogs

Constipation refers to a condition where the bowel movements are incomplete or infrequent. This leads to feces being collected in the bowels, where it turns in to a dry and hard mass that is difficult to expel. If and when it is expelled, it is usually done with pain and discomfort.

A healthy dog will usually need to defecate once or twice a day so if your dog suddenly misses a day or two it is very likely that it is constipated. This means that your dog has difficulties in digesting and it can be very uncomfortable. A constipated dog is likely to show signs of pain, irritation and stress and will behave differently than usual.

Most likely, you will notice a lack of appetite and perhaps less activity as well.

What causes constipation in dogs

The most common causes of constipation are connected to the dog's diet. Perhaps a change of food, less fiber or an inadequate intake of water. Constipation has a lot to do with the level of hydration as the dry feces is created when the colon absorbs almost all the water from the food. Therefore, it is important to make sure that your dog drinks enough water so the food will not be strained from water when it passes the bowels. Senior dogs have a tendency to drink less water than younger dogs, so they are more often suffering from constipation as well. This can be prevented by adding water to the dog food and you should always make sure that your dog eats high-quality food that is customized for its age and life stage.

Some dogs have a tendency to eat anything they find on their way and they will gladly start chewing shoes, toys, paper, fabric and other indigestible items. This can easily block their system and they will develop constipation. Excessive licking of the fur can also lead to constipation problems as fur will collect as fur balls that will create blockage.

What can you do about it

The best thing is to keep your dog healthy and prevent constipation from happening in the first place. This can be done by giving a nutritious, high-quality diet that is rich on fiber plus plenty of fresh water. Regular exercise is also necessary in order to keep your dog healthy. Food, water and exercise are the most effective ways to keep your dog healthy.

However, when the problems has already occurred there are also things you can do to help your dog. One of the first things you can try is to add fibre to your dog's food. A very common tip is to add canned, unsweetened pumpkin to the food. Pumpkin is rich on fiber and contains a lot of water as well. You can also buy certain types of food supplements that contain fiber that you can sprinkle over the dog's food. Oil is also used to relieve constipation as it lubricates the bowels, which makes it easier to pass the feces that has collected. You can add some vegetable oil or mineral oil to you dog's food and this is very likely to solve the problem.

If the problem doesn't go away within a few days or if your dog starts showing signs of unusual discomfort then you should contact the vet for consultation. Home remedies should only be used for mild cases of constipation that will pass within a couple of days. If your dog starts vomiting or starts showing signs of extreme tiredness then you should seek medical care. In these cases, constipation can be a sign of a more severe condition and the symptom should not be ignored.

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