Updated: Oct 11, 2019
As pawrents, there are plenty of opportunities to clear your furkid’s poop that can come in variations – we are referring to different colours, texture and smell. As disgusting as it sounds, have you ever taken a good look at it other than trying to move away from it as far as possible?
A dog’s poop is one of the best ways to assess your dog’s digestion and overall health and we strongly recommend you to always see and feel your dog’s stool (feel through the poop bag of course).
Accessing dog’s poop is like accessing a diamond. You evaluate based on 4Cs – Colour, Consistency, Content and Coating.
Should be a chocolate brown colour. During normal digestion, the gall bladder will release bile to aid in the breakdown of food. Bilirubin is a pigment in bile that gives stool its colour. There may be minor deviations in colour and that’s okay, this is due to the diet, hydration and type of food eaten.
The ideal stool is the consistency of a Play-Doh, easily squished and hold its form (caterpillar lookalike). Hard stool may indicate dehydration while formless stool means that the large intestine is not properly re-absorbing water.
The inside of the stool should look the same as the rest of the stool. You can look out for abnormal things like worms, or some food residue that is undigested as your dog may chow down his food in supersonic speed.
Poop should not have a coating or a film over it. A coating of mucus often accompanies large bowel inflammation.
One time or another, your dog will punish you with diarrhoea for eating the wrong things. Since his digestive system is not functioning properly, you can try feeding him a bland diet such as rice and boiled chicken breast with pumpkin.
You can boil the rice, chicken breast and pumpkin together to make it into porridge. Give small portions of the porridge every few hours so that it will not put so much stress on your dog’s tummy, giving it time to heal and still provide the necessary nutrients for it to function. Continue to give your dog this diet until his poop returns to normal.
During this period of diarrhoea, your dog will experience water loss and it is crucial to replenish water. If your dog does not want to drink fresh water, you can boil some chicken breast and scoop out the broth and offer to your dog, to entice him to drink.
This method is tested and proven with our dog, who used to pick up random objects from the ground and eat them when we are not looking. And then starts to diarrhoea or vomit for the next few days.
If your dog is not getting any better or the condition worsens within 24 hours, you should contact your vet immediately. If your dog’s stool has traces of blood, you should also contact your vet immediately as well. Blood in stool should never be taken lightly because it could mean different causes that can be life threatening.
We used to give our furkid commercial kibbles when she was young because of the nutrients that a puppy needs when growing up. She was pooping as much as she eats, which was a concern because it seemed that most of the kibbles was not digested and she is not getting the full nutrients that the kibbles promised. So we decided that we should cook our own fresh food and added them as toppings to her commercial kibbles. The result was that the poop decreased and the smell was not as strong. We slowly transited to giving more percentage of home-cooked food as compared to commercial kibbles and her poop became so much less with stool that is moist and firm with less odour.
If you decide to make this change for your dog, do consider giving home-cooked fresh food a try and see the results!