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All Stopped Up: How to Help Your Dog Poop if They’re Constipated
You know your good boy or girl is eating okay, but it seems like what’s going in isn’t coming out. If your dog is suffering from a case of FarFromPoopin’ it can be nerve-wracking (and painful for him). Here’s why your best friend may not have gotten invited to any recent poop parties, and how you can help your dog poop when he’s constipated.
Is my dog constipated?
Want to know something crazy? Your dog could take a daily poop but STILL be constipated. That’s right!
Pooping every day doesn’t mean they’re not constipated; it just means they’re consistent. And that’s important, BUT if their poop is rock-hard turd nuggets, he could still be constipated, and you want to fix that!
Do you notice your dog straining or not pooping as much as he typically does? Is he leaving near-fossilized logs instead of firm, consistent and easily-expressed dookie? Do you think he’s holding his poop in?
If he’s going more than two days without a poop but eating as he usually would, his colon may be holding out on you.
Does he go through the motions like he’s going to drop a deuce, but then it’s a false alarm? Does he whine or yelp as he squats? All of these are signs he may be constipated, and you’ve come to the right place if you want to help your dog poop.
Why won’t my dog poop? Why is my dog constipated?
There are a handful of reasons your dog is constipated.
Maybe it’s as simple as ensuring he’s getting enough water. According to Petguide, dogs need about an ounce per pound of water a day. So your 50-pound Lab mix should be drinking about 6.5 cups of water a day at a minimum.
Water is a KEY factor in your dog’s digestion, and without enough, his fecal matter is going to end up very hard and compacted. Not to mention, he’s not getting enough nutrient absorption from his food.
Additionally, if your dog is not getting enough fiber, he may be constipated. The thing about fiber is that quality really does matter. Too many low-quality dog foods have lots of low-quality fiber to ‘bulk’ the food up, but that can bring too much filler-fiber into your dog’s diet. But, if they’re not getting enough of a premium fiber that’s going to take the food you feed through your dog’s digestive system appropriately, he’ll be constipated.
Without a quality fiber to draw in enough water from the outside of your dog’s colon to help bulk up and solidify your dog’s stool, poop is likely to compact and bring on constipation.
If your dog’s anal glands are swollen, your dog may be constipated. You can have your vet or a groomer express them if this is the case. Adding a premium fiber to their diet can also help.
If your dog eats something he shouldn’t, there could be an obstruction. Too often, dogs will eat parts of toys or shoes or your very expensive purse and that’ll cause life-endangering blockage and constipation.
As well, if your dog has fur that mats easily, constipation can happen. Fur matting around their anus can make it harder for your dog to get it all out, and this can lead to constipation in dogs. Always make sure the fur around your pup’s poop shoot is groomed and trimmed.
There are several other reasons your dog is constipated. They include:
- Age. Getting older is not for sissies and as dogs age, constipation may occur.
- Lack of exercise. When doggos get moving, their colons get grooving. Exercise helps move food through the gut.
- Metabolic disease. Hypothyroidism or kidney issues can cause constipation
- Tumors or cancer. Sometimes tumors can restrict movement in the colon.
- Spinal or neurological disease. If your dog physically can’t squat or his body can’t tell the gut how to move food along, you may see dog constipation.
- Drugs. Many pharmacological interventions can make your dog constipated, whether it’s for a condition or as part of surgery or recovery.
The poop process: how do I make my dog poop?
No matter the cause of dog constipation, the pooping process is pretty consistent.
Your dog will eat his meal and the food goes through the digestive process. Digestive enzymes start breaking it down and it travels through the esophagus to get to the stomach and intestines.
When good dog gut health is a priority, your dog’s gut does a great job of moving the fecal matter through his digestive tract and to the colon. That’s where the electrolytes and water are absorbed from the mass of fecal matter.
Fun fact: This happens as the result of a process known as “peristaltic waves.” If anything (including any of the above reasons) blocks this process, the fecal matter just slows or stalls. It’ll stay in your dog’s colon, losing moisture as it does. This is what makes it dry and extremely hard for your dog to poop.
The scientific term that’s typically used in geology but also in dog constipation is called concretion–the rock-hard poop.
If your dog’s bowels are being stubborn, you can definitely do something to help make your dog poop!
Simply ensure your dog is getting enough water, and getting enough fiber in his diet to ensure good gut health. That’s super easy to do with Bernie’s Perfect Poop. Perfect Poop’s Miscanthus grass is a premium fiber that helps bulk up your dog’s poop and pass it through smoothly. It also contributes to gut health by adding XOS (xylooligosaccharides) to your dog’s microbiome. These are prebiotics, and along with inulin, they help feed the good bacteria in your dog’s gut!
Pumpkin and flaxseed add to the fiber combo and pre- and probiotics keep your dog’s colon healthy and happy to do its job.
The digestive enzymes in Perfect Poop start working to break your dog’s food down the minute he starts to eat, and this means better nutrient absorption for your dog too.
Better nutrient absorption means that what’s left to come out of his rear is really just the waste, and he is the healthiest he can be.
All of that good gut health is what you’re going for, but your dog just thinks you’re giving him some delicious treats!
If your dog is constipated, it can be worrisome. You may want to know how to help your dog poop, but the truth is, good health begins in the gut.
Like the doctor always said…Some Bernie’s Perfect Poop a day makes the poop come out the right way!
Okay, maybe they don’t say it quite that way, but pretty close. And if you’re looking for how to help your dog poop? Spot on!
Bernie’s Thoughts on Perfect Pooping
Did you know some of the best joys a dog has in life come from the poops they take?
We love finding that just-right spot and popping a squat. But when we can’t get the bum working right, it isn’t good.
It most likely means something’s not right in our gut and we need you to help!
The good news is that it’s so easy to do, though! My pawrents created Bernie’s Perfect Poop to…well, help your dog have the perfect poop.
It’ll be the stuff your dog’s poop dreams are made of and he’ll just think you’re giving him a delicious treat!
If you’ve been looking for how to help your dog poop, here’s your answer!
Get the poop bags ready for the Poop Pawty!
Chief Dog Officer