Why Pay Attention to Your Dog's Poop
No puppy parents want their puppy to have an accident in their home that they have to end up scrubbing off of the floor, and luckily, with the puppy potty training pads from Mednet Direct, your home will always be protected. However, just because you don’t want your dog’s poop on your floor, it doesn't mean that it’s not important to pay attention to it. In fact, despite how gross it may be, it’s important to inspect your dog’s poop on a regular basis.
You can learn a lot by paying attention to your dog’s poop.
From the signs of digestive distress from giving your dog the wrong kind of food to the signs of gastrointestinal disease and parasites, a lot can be learned when you take the time to inspect your dog’s poop. Your dog obviously cannot talk to you and tell you when something is wrong, and paying close attention to changes in their stool can help you stay alert to changes in their health. If you notice that your dog’s poop is suddenly runny, has a funny color or is covered in blood or mucus, you won’t have to wait until any other symptoms show up to take your dog to see the veterinarian. When you read your dog’s poop, you don’t have to read their mind to know how they are feeling, at least physically. You’ll have all of the information you need!
The four Cs of dog poop
Before we we get into the nitty gritty details of the signs of trouble in your dog’s poop, you first need to understand what to look for when you’re inspecting your dog’s poop. Much like how there are four Cs in determining the value of diamonds, there are also four Cs in dog poop.
A healthy dog stool is a chocolatey brown color, akin to a Tootsie Roll. The color comes from bilirubin, which is a pigment in the bile released during normal digestion. While hydration, diet and dyes in food and treats may affect the color of your dog’s stool, it shouldn’t vary too much. Occasionally, you may see streaks of blood in your dog’s stool. This could mean that your dog had to strain when they defecate, but if you notice more than just a single streak of blood, it doesn’t hurt to consult the veterinarian.
- Small, hard pellets that look like Milk Duds could indicate constipation.
- Stool that is the texture and color of a Tootsie Roll could be difficult for your dog to pass.
- Slightly squishy, chocolate brown logs that are easy to pick up are ideal and indicate health.
- Tan, grey or chocolate logs that have a slimy coating could indicate irritation or inflammation.
- Logs that are slimy, moist and fall apart when picked up could indicate irritation or inflammation.
- Plops of poop that are shapeless and dropped in many locations could mean that your dog is reacting to stress or a food sensitivity, or that they have a possible health issue.
- Tan, reddish or watery puddles could indicate a reaction to a food sensitivity or stress, or a possible health issue.
The only way to know what’s going on inside your dog’s poop is to actually dissect it. Luckily, this is something your veterinarian will do, so you won’t have to do it yourself. However, if you’re curious or you are worried that your pet might have a health problem, the inside should be the same — squishy and chocolatey brown — as the rest of it. But, you may spot something abnormal, like grass, trash, worms or fur. While small bits of trash or grass may not be troubling, you should definitely consult the veterinarian if you spot worms. Fur, too, could indicate a problem, like overgrooming due to stress or boredom, or even a skin disease, so it doesn’t hurt to consult your veterinarian.
Healthy dog poop doesn’t have any sort of mucus, film or coating on it, and when you pick it up, it shouldn’t leave a trail behind. If there is a mucous coating, it could indicate inflammation of the large bowel, and it’s common to see it accompanied by diarrhea.