Constipation is a common problem for pets, and dogs of all shapes, sizes and ages can suffer from it. But while it is common, it should not be ignored.
So, what causes it? There are many ailments and activities that can cause constipation in your dog. These include:
- Prostrate problems
- Ingesting foreign objects such as dirt, hair or grass
- Lack of exercise
- Not enough fibre in the diet
- Side effects from medications
- Issues with the anus such as tumours or blockages.
It’s easy to spot a constipated dog as you’ll notice that she is straining, crouching or whining while she tries to go to the toilet. If you notice matted faeces or stringy bits around her bottom, this could also be a sign of constipation. And of course, if you haven’t noticed new poos in the yard, that’s a sure sign she’s having trouble.
Get your dog to the vet, who will be able to work out what is causing the constipation and offer treatment for it. Some typical ways to treat a constipated dog include:
- Increasing the fibre in her diet
- Increasing the amount of exercise she does
- An enema, laxative or stool softener
- Other medication, particularly if the constipation is a symptom of another medical issue.
At home, you can help your pet stay regular by giving her access to plenty of fresh water, by making sure she is getting the right amount of exercise for her age and breed, and by offering her a healthy diet.