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Guide To Decode Your Dog's Health From Their Poop

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Dog poop offers valuable health information. Every bit has some information to add, from its color, consistency and coating to its contents.

For instance, abnormal color or consistency can indicate a diet change or health issues. Therefore, it warns dog owners so that they look into their dog's poop for clues and consider potential vet visits.

Moreover, understanding "normal" poop consistency is crucial for a healthy digestive tract. Veterinarians advise owners to monitor their dog's typical potty habits and output to identify potential issues.

This post comes with a compilation of guides from experts to help dog owners decode the hidden meanings behind their pet’s poop.


How Much and How Many Times?

Dogs' stools' size varies significantly based on their fiber intake and food quality. Therefore, it is important to use a guide to understanding your dog’s poop. Fresh food-fed dogs produce smaller, higher-quality poop due to better absorption.

A University of Illinois study found that diets with human-grade ingredients are palatable and highly digestible.

However, dogs on kibble diets had to eat more to maintain their body weight. Therefore, they produce 1.5 to 2.9 times more poop than those on fresh, human-grade diets. Also, this indicates that dogs absorb more nutrition, and humans scoop less poop.

Moreover, the frequency of poop production is crucial for understanding a pet's health. Some dogs need multiple bowel movements daily, while others only defecate once daily.

As long as the color and consistency of their poop appear healthy, it's considered normal. However, sudden increases or decreases in frequency could indicate a digestive issue.

Understanding  The Different Kinds of Dog Poop 

Now that you know how to regulate and perceive the amount and frequency of your dog’s poop let us understand the different types.

This covers the color, consistency, shape and even contents of your dog’s poop. According to these factors, you can categorize your dog poop in the following manner—

1. Diarrheic poop

Diarrheic poop can result from various factors like the following:

  • Food-related issues.
  • Environmental factors.
  • Different types of consumption.
  • Early warning signs of disease or infection.

Food-related matters may require 1-2 more days of reducing the amount of new dog food gradually increasing the new portion until it completely replaces the original food.

On the other hand, environmental factors may include stressful events, changes in living conditions, medication, or unsuitable drinking water.

An early warning sign of disease or infection may also be present in the dog's poop.

Therefore, you must adopt a "wait and see" approach to address these issues. Next, consult a vet if the situation doesn't improve after 2-3 bowel movements.

Also, consider feeding them plain, steamed food, such as broccoli and pumpkin, mixed with their preferred meat when they face these conditions. Add more vegetables or starches to cleanse the body and solidify stools.

Moreover, feed bones, such as dehydrated or raw chicken, duck feet or wings, and pre and probiotics to help with maldigestion, especially diarrhea.

2. Loose Stool

If your dog suddenly has soft, loose poop, it's important to rethink the new food or items you've introduced to their diet.

It usually causes no harm. However, it's best to introduce it slowly to avoid upset stomachs.

Furthermore, when the poop remains loose, consider altering the diet. If the issue persists, feed only a quarter of the new food and keep the rest.

Check if your dog has consumed unfamiliar food, whether a once-off treat or something they ate without supervision.

Therefore, dogs need more variety in their food intake to maintain a balanced diet. Start small by feeding them a small amount of mashed steamed pumpkin and observe any adverse reactions before gradually increasing it.

Also, they should be able to drink clean water during this period to improve their health.

Some pet owners may permanently stick to one type of food, but a comprehensive and balanced diet is essential for long-term health.

3. Pepple Poop

Constipation in dogs is common due to a dry kibble diet, which is high in dietary fiber and lacks water.

This diet can lead to hard stools the next day. To prevent constipation, you must ensure your dog drinks enough water and is dehydrated.

External body conditions, such as insufficient grooming, lack of exercise, or excessive self-grooming, can also contribute to hard stools. More serious issues may include anal gland infections or hard foreign objects stuck in the intestinal tract.

If these reasons are not detected, seeking a doctor's opinion may be better. To encourage your dog to drink more water, add water to their favorite food or give them steamed vegetables and meat broth.

Additionally, adding dietary fiber like green leafy vegetables or mashed steamed pumpkins can help them drink more water. Addressing these issues can help your dog maintain a healthy and happy life. 


Understanding Coprophagia In Dogs

Coprophagia is the practice of eating stools in dogs, which can be repulsive for owners. It is not an abnormal behavior for canines, as bitches naturally consume their pup's feces to keep the nest clean and prevent unhygienic conditions.

Nursing females are compelled to consume their pups' excrement due to a biological drive that was ingrained as a survival instinct.

Many puppies go through an oral stage, exploring everything with their mouths, sometimes ingesting non-food items, including feces.

Over time, the majority of puppies come to realize that food tastes better than excrement and decide to never again eat their own feces.

Some older puppies may continue to eat feces for a few months, but most grow out of the habit after the first year.

Dogs may eat their own poop due to  the following reasons:

  • Behavioral issues.
  • Nutritional deficiencies.
  • Medical issues.

These behaviors may include seeking attention, boredom, inspiration from others, or pleasing humans. Stressful or cleanliness-conscious dogs may also exhibit poop-eating behaviors.

Nutritional deficiencies, such as enzymes or trace minerals, may cause a dog to eat its own poop to replenish its nutrient needs. Moreover, medical-related issues, like parasites, diabetes, or thyroid issues, can cause a dog to crave its stool.

Healthy Pooping, Healthy Living.

The color of healthy dog feces should range from light to dark brown, which indicates a well-functioning digestive system.

The texture should be firm and well-formed, with clear segments that hold their shape. When you pick it up, there should be minimal residue left behind.

The volume of the stool should be consistent with your dog's food intake, so if they eat more, you can expect more output.

Overall, paying attention to your dog's poop can give you valuable insight into their overall health and wellbeing.