What to feed a dog with diarrhea?
It’s going to happen. When you least expect it, your sweet canine is going to have a bout of dog diarrhea. Are you prepared? Do you know how to tell if your dog’s diarrhea warrants a trip to the veterinarian or if you can treat your dog’s diarrhea at home? Here are a few tips to help you know when it’s an emergency or when you might be able to treat your dog’s poop problems at home.
Why Do Dogs Get Diarrhea?
Dog diarrhea can occur for a variety of reasons including overindulgence, toxicity, parasites, a sudden change in food, or even stress. If you know the cause of your dog’s diarrhea, choosing the right treatment option may be easier. For example, if you know your dog ate something toxic, heading to the vet asap is the right choice.
When to Take Your Dog to the Vet for Diarrhea
If you are ever unsure, then the answer is go. Seeking veterinary treatment is always a good choice and can potentially save your dog’s life. In my opinion, the worst feeling would be to know that you may have been able to save your dog’s life if you’d just gone to the vet sooner. That said, here are some other clues that veterinary care is necessary.
Integrative veterinarian Dr. Carol Osborne offers this advice, “It’s a good idea to evaluate your dog’s health carefully. Considerations include your dog’s age. Is your dog very young, or is he or she a senior citizen? Remember, very young and very old dogs are generally more sensitive to health issues because their internal immunity and ability to recover is less than optimal.” Dr. Karen Becker, proactive and integrative wellness veterinarian adds, “If you notice she’s also sluggish, running a fever, or feels warm to the touch, or there’s a change in her behavior, I certainly recommend you contact your vet.”
Dr. Osborne also advises, “Diarrhea that has lasted over 24 hours, been recurrent, as well as diarrhea with visible blood or that is black in color are all symptoms requiring your vet’s attention. If a dog has been experiencing diarrhea and appetite loss for over 24 hours, dehydration is a major concern. If your regular vet is not available, visiting the Pet ER is a wise choice.”
If your adult dog is otherwise healthy and his health does not pose any of the risks above, you can treat your dog’s diarrhea at home. The first step would be to withhold food for 12 hours, but not water. This allows time for your dog’s gut to start to heal. If your dog is not drinking, you can add dog bone broth to his water. This will encourage drinking, help prevent dehydration, and add vitamins and minerals in a soothing way. Offer your dog small amounts of water and bone broth throughout the day.
After 12 hours, offer your dog a bland diet. I keep homemade congee in Dexter’s freezer at all times! Congee is also known as rice porridge, jook, zhou, xi fan, or even gruel. It’s a bland diet that is easy on the digestive system and helps nourish your dog.
Offer your dog a small mixture of his dog congee, warm bone broth, and slippery elm 3 times a day for the next 3 days. Once your dog’s stools are back to normal, slowly transition him back to his regular food.
If at any time, your dog seems to be getting worse or not better, please take your dog to the veterinarian for guidance.
Dog Congee Recipe
- 8 oz. chicken, ground
- 1 cup brown rice, dry
- 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
- ¾ Tbsp. ground ginger
- Rinse and drain the rice. Pour the rice into a large pot and add 5 cups of water and the chicken.
- Bring the pot to a boil then immediately turn down the heat. Allow the pot to simmer, covered, for 11½ hours, or until the rice has absorbed most of the liquid and has started breaking apart.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool, but serve warm.
- Portion out the remaining congee and freeze in glass containers.
Has your dog tried bone broth or congee? Tell me in the comments.
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