Dog Constipation

Dog constipation is a common condition affecting the digestive system. All dogs can suffer from constipation, but older dogs suffer more than younger dogs.

Dog constipation can range from less frequent bowel movements than normal to more difficult passage of stools or, usually, a combination of both.

Being constipated can make your dog feel uncomfortable, bloated, sluggish and inactive.

Regular excretion of waste material from the dog's body is crucial to maintaining health. If waste is not removed your dog's system is polluted and put at risk.

The colon is the organ in the dog's body that gets rid of waste, toxins and bacteria. It controls and moves waste materials throughout the body.

If these waste products become choked inside the colon, constipation occurs and because the dog's colon walls are so thin, clogged waste material that stays in the colon too long can leak through the colon wall and into the body causing further complications.

If your dog is constipated and the colon is not in regular use it can become weak finding it difficult to do it's job properly.

Signs and Symptoms of Dog Constipation

Bloating of the abdoman

Cramps or abdominal pain

Hard, compacted stools that are difficult or painful to pass

No bowel movement

Loss of appetite

Flatulence with the inability to pass a motion

Bad Breath

Coated tongue

Vomiting and appetite loss

Causes of Dog Constipation

In the majority of cases dog constipation is due to a bad diet. All dogs need fibre - bran, whole grains, fresh fruit and vegetables

Insufficient consumption of water

Lack of proper exercise

Stress and anxiety

Medical conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, underactive thyroid gland, colon or rectal cancer, spinal injury, kidney failure, excessive calcium in the blood, tumors in the bowel can all result in dog constipation.

Changes in the dog's environment

Medications prescribed for other ailments particularly antibiotics.

Parasite infestations - worms

Obstructions caused by ingested, or undigested, grass or bones etc.

Diagnosing Dog Constipation

It is crucial to monitor your dog's bowel movements, taking particular notice of any changes in stool color or consistency. Veterinarians emphasise that it's important to be mindful of any signs of constipation early on and deal with them promptly.

Continuous constipation can result in a term called megacolon, which is a stretched and slack colon no longer capable of contracting as it should. If you detect any changes in your dog's bowel movements take your animal to your vet for a check up.

Treatment for Dog Constipation

Several treatments can help to ease the symptoms of constipation and encourage a healthy digestive system. Conventional medication, complementary therapy and natural remedies together with a high fiber diet and regular exercise will keep your dog's digestive system regular.

If your dog does become constipated, established laxatives are often prescribed. Giving your dog a mild laxative, if advised by your vet, can resolve the condition. All the same, remember that smaller dogs will probably need smaller measures than larger dogs, so be sure to get the correct dosage from a professional veterinarian.

Sometimes enemas are performed, but this is not a pleasant experience and may be stressful for your dog (and you). If an obstruction is suspected, x-rays may be required.

Natural Remedies for Dog Constipation

There are numerous natural and holistic treatments that can assist with dog constipation and promote easier digestion for your dog, without the side effects commonly connected with veterinary prescribed drugs.

Treatments like herbal and homeopathic remedies can reestablish balance and regularity to the digestive system. Psyllium nigrum husk and Avena sativa (Oats) are very high sources of dietary fiber and have been used for hundreds of years to encourage regular bowel movements.

Aloe Ferox is known for its beneficial effect on digestive functioning and acts as a natural detox while Natrium Muriaticum helps to maintain the dog's water balance and is a necessary ingredient of all living cells helping to ease constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, indigestion and bloating.

Always obtain your natural remedies from reputable companies to ensure utmost effectiveness and safety.

Tips to Prevent Dog Constipation

Supply high fiber foods such as whole grain oats, wheat bran, rice and fresh vegetables to your dog's diet

Always have plenty of clean, fresh drinking water available for your dog.

Regular exercise is crucial to both prevent and relieve constipation.

Try to encourage regular bowel movements by walking them outside at regular times about an hour after meals.

Cut back on foods that contain flour, excess sugar and dairy content.

Make sure your dog does not have access to objects that may block the colon or bowels such as coins, buttons, keys, large brittle bones, or garbage, as you know your dog will try to eat anything

Related Natural Remedies:

Natural Moves for Pets contains a blend of herbal remedies and biochemic tissue salts especially selected to support bowel health in pets and to maintain healthy bowel and digestive functioning.