Constipation can occur in dogs they get older. Constipation occurs
when defecation becomes difficult or is absent. When feces stay
in the intestines longer than is necessary, too much moisture is
absorbed from the stools, causing them to become dry and hard. This
makes the stools difficult to expel. As a result, he will strain
to defecate and may not have a bowel movement for several days.
If this condition goes untreated, the lower bowels may eventually
become severely and irreversibly stretched, causing them
to lose their ability to expel feces. This condition is known as
who is constipated will usually:
-Take more time than usual when having a bowel movement
– Have small feces, which are typically round and hard
Certain drugs can also cause constipation such as antihistamines
and motility modifiers (e.g. Imodium) can cause the intestines to
slow down, resulting in constipation. In fact, laxatives themselves
can in some cases make matters worse.
more commonly, diet appears to play a significant role in constipation.
Sometimes putting your dog on a diet causes constipation. This can
be prevented if you make sure he gets some vegetables (a source
of fiber and vitamins).
a dog swallows foreign materials such as hair, bones, garbage, cloth
or rocks, it can lead to constipation.
addition, prolonged lack of exercise, a change in surroundings,
or a change in daily routine (i.e. stress) can lead to constipation
problems as well. In these cases, pets may become reluctant to relieve
themselves and become constipated.
medical problems such as infected anal glands or a fractured hip
can cause painful defecation and result in constipation. Some pets
may have an intestinal obstruction or a nerve or muscle disorder.
Regular grooming will prevent excessive hair ingestion and regular
exercise will encourage bowel regularity.
can usually be treated at home. First, ensure your dog has plenty
of fresh water to drink and make sure your dog has the opportunity
to take frequent bowel movements. (Oftentimes constipation is caused
by not enough water and having to wait to defecate.)
laxatives can also be effective. These usually contain a combination
of mineral oil and/or petrolatum along with a flavor base. They
soften and lubricate feces and thereby make it easier to expel.
Always ask your vet for his recommendations on using
pets should avoid bones, have access to fresh water at all times,
and be fed a high fiber diet.
can go a long way toward kick-starting your dog’s digestive system.
with your veterinarian if the condition persists for more than a
day or two. Your veterinarian can advise you on what’s best suited
for your dog if he gets constipated.
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