From a change in diet to worms or parasites, there are many possible causes of puppy diarrhea. Since diarrhea can be a symptom of serious illness in dogs, puppies should be monitored closely. Bugs and viruses that older dogs can stomach may have more adverse effects on puppies, who are still developing immune defenses.
But if your vet determines that your pet’s symptoms are mild and not cause for alarm, there are many home remedies that will help alleviate puppy diarrhea naturally.
Mild Versus Severe Puppy Diarrhea
Any noticeable changes in a young dog’s stools is worth a call to your veterinarian. But if your dog is still playful and active, you may be dealing with a mild form of diarrhea that can be treated at home. Contact your vet immediately if diarrhea lasts more than a couple days, is liquid, has blood, or is accompanied with off behavior like weakness or vomiting. If your puppy simply has soft stools (the texture of pudding), describe any accompanying symptoms to your vet and discuss what home remedies might help most.
Home Remedies for Mild Puppy Diarrhea
For minor diarrhea cases, a few items in your cupboard can help ease discomfort and help your pup’s gut get back on track. Try these home remedies after ruling out more serious causes of puppy diarrhea.
1. Bland, Binding Foods for Puppy Diarrhea
Bland foods like white rice can be good for a puppy’s upset stomach. Try mixing rice with salt-free chicken or vegetable broth to enhance the flavor. Fiber from cooked sweet potato or plain, canned pumpkin (not pie filling) is also recommended to help normalize stools.
2. Beneficial Bacteria and Puppy Diarrhea
Yogurt has beneficial bacteria that can help restore balance in your dog’s belly and firm up stools. Depending on their size, try giving dogs a small container (6 oz) of plain yogurt daily. Some dogs may not like the taste or texture of yogurt, but you can try mixing in dried food or natural treats to make it more appealing.
3. Over-the-Counter Treatment for Puppy Diarrhea
Anti-diarrheal medicine such as Petpo Bismol, Kaopectate, and Immodium AD are generally okay to administer to pets with upset stomachs. You can also purchase medicine made specifically for dogs, like DiaBec. Consult your veterinarian for dosing based on the size, age, and breed of your dog. Ask your vet before administering medicine to puppies under six weeks old.
Make sure your puppy gets plenty of water during a bout of diarrhea to avoid dehydration. Dehydration is a concern for young puppies, and can become a danger to their health quickly. While fasting for up to 24 hours to rid the digestive system of bugs helps grown dogs, it is not recommended for puppies under five pounds.
Puppy diarrhea can be a messy and unpleasant situation, but these simple remedies will help bring comfort to your pet.
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This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian with respect to your pet. It has, however, been verified by a licensed veterinarian for accuracy.