Lowest price guarantee - We will beat any price!
Free worldwide shipping for orders over $50
 
Brands
Info
 

Diarrhea in Dogs and Cats: Symptoms & Treatments

It’s not a pleasant topic to think about, but unfortunately, diarrhea is a very common digestive issue among both dogs and cats. Despite how common it is, you should always be aware of the complications and causes of diarrhea, and seek advice from your veterinarian if it does not resolve quickly.

Symptoms

A healthy animal’s stool should be firm and formed. In the case of diarrhea, problems in the digestive system lead to excess water in the feces, resulting in a loose stool. This is what most people think of as diarrhea, but the full list of possible symptoms includes:

  • Loose, watery stools
  • Abdominal pain
  • Gas
  • Abnormal smelling feces
  • Weight loss
  • Matted hair around the tail

Causes of diarrhea

Frustratingly, there are many things, both internal and external that can cause diarrhea in dogs and cats, which can sometimes make identifying the cause difficult. Often, dietary indiscretion will lead to an upset stomach, but other causes of diarrhea include:

  • Allergies
  • Change in diet
  • Stress
  • Infections
  • Parasites
  • Polyps or tumors
  • Trauma to the digestive tract

Treating diarrhea

Identifying the cause of the problem should be one of the first things on your list, as eliminating this can help relieve the symptoms. This is particularly relevant when it comes to any kind of food allergy or intolerance. You should also take into account if your pet is suffering from any other symptoms, and if this might indicate a need for a trip to the vet.

If your pet is otherwise healthy, it is usually safe to treat their diarrhea at home in the short term. Vets often recommend allowing your pet’s stomach to rest by fasting them for 12 hours, but note that they should always have access to plenty of fresh water even when fasting. Pets with diarrhea may also benefit from a bland but digestible diet, which is designed not to cause any stress or irritation to the digestive system. This includes foods such as boiled chicken breast, white rice, cottage cheese or boiled pumpkin.

It is important not to give your pet any diarrhea medications that are designed for humans, as these can be toxic to animals. Consult your veterinarian for a medication that is right for your dog or cat. To help your pet’s digestive system return to normal, you may wish to introduce a probiotic supplement, which will help to restore the balance of good bacteria within the intestinal tract.

When to see a vet

While diarrhea is a common complaint that affects nearly every animal at some point in their lives, there are times when it is serious enough to warrant a visit to the vet. In the case of dogs or cats that are in bad health, old pets, puppies or kittens, having diarrhea can quickly weaken their constitution. Not only are they not absorbing all the nutrients from their food, but the excess water expelled with diarrhea can lead to dehydration.

Diarrhea can also be a sign of a more serious condition. If the diarrhea is also accompanied by vomiting, blood in the feces, fever or lethargy, you should take your pet to see a vet as soon as possible.


Diarrhea in Dogs and Cats: Symptoms & Treatments

There are no products to display

What we’ve been talking about!

See all

Tips for socializing an older dog

by james on 22 Oct 2021
Socialization occurs in puppies at an early age, but there are plenty of practices to help an older dog learn proper social etiquette.   Tips for socializing an older dog Socialization is an important part of young dogs’ lives. During this time, they learn how to behave an a way that is accepted by their peers and human companions, leading to smoother social interactions throughout adulthood. If you are considering adopting an adult dog or missed this window in your pet’s early life, however, do not worry. There are plenty of ways to help your adult dog develop the social skills needed in his daily interactions with people and other pets.   Ideally, socialization occurs in puppies between three and 12 weeks of age, when they are at their most receptive formative stages. After about 16 weeks, learning new ways of socializing become much more difficult, but there are many ways to help an older dog learn the tricks behind behaving in a socially acceptable way. One of the best approaches is to simply walk your dog daily. This provides the perfect opportunity for your companion to meet and great other people and pet in a controlled setting, where you can help him learn the ropes of proper canine etiquette. Introduce your pet to other dogs slowly to help make this process smooth. If your dog barks and jumps, do not yell or tug at his leash, but instead maintain a calm and confident demeanor while distracting your pet with a command or touch to keep his social experiences positive. Calmly walk away from tense situations and, over time, your dog should learn how to interact with other people and animals in a socially acceptable way. Walking also helps burn excess energy, helping your pet stay calm throughout the rest of his day.   Training can be another great opportunity to socialize your adult dog. Research group classes, where you will have the opportunity to expose your companion to other dogs and people in a controlled setting. You can also arrange for your dog to meet a friend or friend’s canine companion to help Fido ease into new social behavior. If your dog is particularly cautious around unfamiliar people and pets, start by having your friend walk across the street from your pet, slowly decreasing distance over time. Any time your dog remains calms and listens to your commands, reward him with plenty of treats and praise. Do not push too far during any one training session, however, as this can overwhelm both you and your pet, leading to a negative experience and backtracking progress. Over time, these interactions will help your pet master the calm behavior desired during introductions to new people and pets. As with any new activity, always put safety first when socializing your pet. Keep him on a leash until you are certain he will stay calm and follow your commands in a given setting. When meeting a new dog, always ensure the other animal is friendly before initiating a greeting. Watch for signs of stress in your pet when he is in new social situations, such as excessive panting and “smiling,” yawning, and tucking his trail between his legs. If you notice this stress signals, back off and start training fresh again another day to ensure socialization stays positive for you and your pet. If your dog is experiencing more severe behavioral obstacles as you practice socialization, consider working with a behavior specialist to help him adjust, improving his quality of life and opportunities for you to both interact with other people and pets.

How to replace dogs’ problem behaviors using differential reinforcement

by james on 15 Oct 2021
Many dog owners struggle with their pets’ bad habits, but do not want to punish them. Differential reinforcement offers another option. How to replace dogs’ problem behaviors using differential reinforcement Many dog owners struggle with their companions’ problem behaviors, but do not like the idea of punishing their pets. Fortunately for pet parents, differential reinforcement swaps bad behaviors for better ones without the need to scold your four-legged friend. Differential reinforcement is a complex name for a relatively simple concept: By replacing problem behaviors with more desirable actions, you can reduce bad behaviors in pets. This is done through positive reinforcement of incompatible behaviors, or actions that cannot take place at the same time as  the undesired habit. By rewarding the more desirable action, you make it easy for your pet to choose the preferable behavior, reducing bad habits without ever needing to punish your pet. To start differential reinforcement of other behavior, it is crucial to pick a replacement behavior that cannot take place at the same time as the unwanted habit. For example, if your dog is prone to jumping on guests as they enter your home, you may choose the “sit” command as your alternative. Start your pet’s practice in a quiet spot with very few distractions and no other people. As he begins to master the alternative commend in this setting, slowly add distractions to his training. You can do this by practicing in your backyard, during walks, and even in a dog park. Eventually, when you feel confident Fido has mastered the command, you can practice in the scenario that triggers his problem behavior. Begin this phase of training with your dog on a leash to help maintain control over the environment, as allowing him to continue a problem behavior only reinforces the habit. Likewise, even negative attention such as scolding can be a reward to some pets, so avoid reinforcing any unwanted actions as much as possible. In the example above, this means asking guests to turn away and not acknowledge your pet if he begins to jump on them. Instead, ask your dog to sit and as soon as he performs the command, reward him with treats, praise and attention. This will be especially effective if you use high-value treats such as meat or cheese during the early stages of training. As with any training, practice makes perfect. It is common to experience setbacks as you introduce the alternative behavior in trigger situations, so be patient with your pet. It may take more than a few attempts to achieve the desired outcome, so do not push your pet too hard during any given training session, as you and your dog will both lose focus and become frustrated. Over time, your companion should learn to seek the reward rather than repeat bad habits, replacing problem behaviors with more desirable actions.

How to help your cat lose weight

by james on 06 Oct 2021
Indoor cats live longer lives, but are more prone to pack on extra weight. Here are a few tips to help keep Kitty lose weight gradually. How to help your cat lose weight Keeping your cat indoors can help him live a longer life, but housecats are prone to a more sedentary lifestyle that can lead to problems with weight gain. To help keep Kitty a healthy weight, you may need to reconsider his diet by and lifestyle by providing him with nutrient-rich food, carefully considered portions, and interactive toys to inspire activity and play. Before ever starting a weight-loss program for your pet, talk to your veterinarian about establishing a plan that supports healthy dieting and avoids severe food restrictions. Rapid weight loss can cause a serious disease in cats called known as fatty liver disease, so this is a not a step you should skip when putting your cat on a weight-loss program. Once your veterinarian has approved a plan, you can begin working towards achieving a healthy weight for your pet. What “healthy” means is unique to each animal, but you can use your pet’s body to establish a good baseline for your companion. Objective measures of a cat’s body condition are based on observable features, such as whether you can see his ribs and a distinct waistline, and how easily you can feel your pet’s bone structure. At a healthy weight, you should be able to see your cat’s waist behind his ribs; feel, but not see, his ribs; and observe a small pouch of fat on his stomach.  Cats should never lose more than 2 percent of their body weight in a week, so shedding excess body mass should be a gradual process. While your veterinarian can assist in calculating calorie goals and a feeding schedule to help Kitty achieve a healthy weight, you can try your hand at helping him lose weight through small changes such as modifications to his food type. For example, a diet high in fiber and low in fat can help your pet feel fuller longer by allowing him to consume more volume of food without excess calories. Likewise, a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet can help your pet feel fuller longer and contribute to weight loss. Choosing wet foods with more water content will help with weight loss by increasing the volume of Kitty’s portions without contributing calories. In addition to feeding your pet nutrient-rich food in controlled portions, you can help him lose weight gradually by supporting a more active lifestyle. Though living indoors increases cats’ life expectancies and protects wildlife such as birds that serve as prey for outdoor pets, housecats are less active and are prone to packing on extra weight. You can help your pet become more active by using toys such as laser pointers or fishing pole to play with your pet; giving him a puzzle feeder to challenge both his body and mind; or providing him with more vertical spaces for jumping and climbing, such as a cat trees and perches in windowsills. Combined with a healthy diet and portions, this can help your pet shed unhealthy weight in a controlled way.
Sign up to our newsletter to know more about our specials!
 
Marketing by