Dog Diarrhea Medicine and Dog Diarrhea Cures

How can you choose the right dog diarrhea medicine when there are countless causes?

Fortunately, dog diarrhea cures are usually easy to come by with little to no side effects regardless of the cause. 

Before choosing treatment, you must find and eliminate the causes and figure out how bad it really is...

Diagnosing Dog Diarrhea

Dog diarrhea is simply diagnosed – your dog will have frequent, soft, fluid-like and often-uncontrollable bowel movements.  The feces are “runny” either because food is moving through your dog’s system so quickly that the colon doesn’t have time to absorb the normal amount of fluid or because more fluids are being secreted by the intestine.

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It’s the body’s natural way of moving unwanted or irritating contents through the system as fast as possible (another great example of your body trying to heal itself, which is what holistic medicine attempts to support!).

If your dog poops frequently but the output looks normal and healthy, there should be nothing to worry about.  By the way, on a raw natural dog food diet the average dog should have no more than one to two bowel movements per day.

More aggressive dog diarrhea medicine may be required for severe cases whose symptoms point to problems in the following areas:

  • Upper small intestines – inflammation or bleeding
    • Sometimes dark or black feces (from digested blood)
    • Belching, bloated stomach or flatulence from buildup of extra gas
  • Inflammation in the colon
    • Diarrhea “explodes” out during bowel movements
    • Feces may have red areas from bleeding in the colon
    • More frequent diarrhea
    • Possibly more mucus in feces

There are more serious conditions that could be causing dog diarrhea in puppies, especially those puppies that have not been vaccinated.  If your puppy is experiencing severe diarrhea you should contact your veterinarian immediately.

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Find and Eliminate the Causes of Dog Diarrhea

No one says this will be easy, but you should keep your dog away from all potential dog diarrhea causes to hone in on the culprit.

Food is the easiest thing to identify...

Have you changed your dog’s diet recently?  Could they have eaten something indigestible such as bone fragments?  Is there a chance that you fed them spoiled food or that they have a dog food allergy? Could they have gotten into something around your home or in the yard?

Has your dog received vaccinations recently? If the diarrhea was secondary to a recent vaccination, you should be VERY concerned about future adverse reactions if the vaccinations continue. You can consult with a holistic veterinarian in your area regarding an exemption form for vaccinations.

We’ll get into altering your dog’s diet as the first and often best dog diarrhea medicine further down the page, but in the mean time take note of new food, chewed up plants, new lawn fertilizer, etc. so you can keep your dog away from them in the future.

Dog worms are another possibility, which can be diagnosed by a veterinarian using a fecal test.

If you have ruled out food and worms, bacteria or a virus is the likely problem, both of which are difficult to eliminate over the long term.  Make sure that you keep your dog’s sleep area, food and water bowls disinfected and clean your dog’s bedding frequently.

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The Best Dog Diarrhea Medicine & Dog Diarrhea Cures

We have categorized the best dog diarrhea medicine and cures as follows

For Mild Dog Diarrhea

Always change your dog’s diet as a first step towards dog diarrhea cures.  Their systems need a chance to rest, reduce inflammation and get rid of whatever they don’t like.  

How can you let their system rest without starving them?  Simple!

Don’t feed them for 12 to 24 hours other than a few ice cubes and a good organic dog treat or two, then transition to a liquid diet.  It is important that they don’t eat any solid foods for at least the first day or two.

If you are looking for quicker relief, use RuniPoo Relief from Native Remedies.  Aside from it's great name ("runny poo" - yep, I guess that's another way to say diarrhea!), it contains several natural ingredients that have been proven to quickly and effectively curb the problem:

dog diarrhea medicine
  • Plantain - supports the health of the digestive system and mucous membranes.
  • Lady's Mantle (Alchemilla vulgaris) - supports healthy firm stools and maintains bowel functioning.  Also contains tannis, which supports the natural production of secretions that form a soothing layer on the lining of the digestive tract.
  • Podophyllum - especially good for those dogs who tend to drink larger than average amounts of cold water at one time ("liverish" temperament") in addition to those who need digestive support in hot weather.
  • Sulphur - sulphur can be found in every cell in the body.  As a natural remedy it supports digestive function.
  • Arsen alb. - supports both the digestive and nervous system (so is also good for "highly strung" pets.

Dehydration is a big danger with the resulting loss of water, potassium and sodium, so encourage drinking distilled water as often as possible until the dog diarrhea subsides. 

If you decide not to go for the quicker relief...

After the initial 12 to 24 hour fast, feed your dog a broth made from distilled water, rice, vegetables and meat (the broth only – remember, no solid foods yet!) to replenish necessary nutrients.

After the one to two-day liquid diet, start leaving the solid vegetables in the broth (start with a little bit then slowly add more solids with each meal). After one more day, introduce yogurt along with white rice, switching to brown rice after a few days.

Once your dog is on the way to recovery, feeding them a little plain yogurt or acidophilus will reintroduce healthy bacteria to the digestive tract.

Following a day or two of the veggies and broth, brown rice and yogurt, you can slowly transition them back to their normal diet. You can also feed chicken or turkey baby food mixed with brown rice and acidophilus.

Organic Puppy Food

Taylor Tips!

My owners have used this approach for me countless times, and boy am I a happy camper when my poop goes back to normal after just a few days.  

Guess that's what I get for stealing chocolate off of the coffee table!

For More Severe Cases

More severe cases require more potent dog diarrhea medicine.  Give these options a try, one at a time in no particular order:

  • Activated charcoal – especially good dog diarrhea medicine for diarrhea caused by bad food or ingestion of toxic substance
    • Depending on your dog’s size, mix ½ to 1 teaspoon of powder OR 1 to 3 tablets with water and feed by mouth every 3 or 4 hours
    • Use no longer than 24 hours, as longer-term use can interfere with digestion
  • Roasted carob powder – yep, the chocolate substitute!
    • Mix powder with water
    • Depending on your dog’s size, give ½ to 2 teaspoons 3 times per day for 3 days
dog diarrhea medicine
  • Slippery elm powder
    • Mix 1 teaspoon (slightly rounded) of slippery elm powder with 1 cup of cold distilled water
    • Stir constantly while bringing to a boil
    • Reduce heat to simmer and stir for 2 to 3 minutes while mixture partially thickens
    • Remove from heat
    • Add 1 tablespoon of honey and stir well
    • Cool to room temperature
    • Give ½ to 1 teaspoon to small dogs, 2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons to medium dogs and 3 to 4 tablespoons to large dogs
    • Give 4 times per day or every 4 hours
    • Cover the mixture and store at room temperature

Conventional veterinarians may prescribe motility modifiers, which are drugs that increase or decrease the movement of food through the intestines.  This dog diarrhea medicine can control the problem for a couple of days, but like all other man-made dog diarrhea medicine it can have negative side effects.

We recommend trying the above options first and taking this route as a last resort.  Either way, motility modifiers should not be used longer than 48 hours.

Dog homeopathic treatments are also effective, such as may apple, mercury, nux vomica, arsenic trioxide and windflower.  Consult with your local holistic vet or one of ours to determine which is best for your dog.

For Chronic Diarrhea

Does your dog tend to get diarrhea frequently?  If so, it may be because they are just "built that way".  But it could also be due to a more serious problem. To be on the safe side, get a full workup done by your local holistic veterinarian.

In the mean time, try one or more of the following...

  • Try supplementing their diet with Digestive Support from PetAlive.  It will help boost digestive functioning, as it contains:
dog diarrhea medicine
    • Licorice (glycyrrhiza glabra) - an excellent tonic for the intestines, bladder, kidney and entire digestive tract.  Also sooths the lining of the digestive tract.
    • Slippery Elm (Ulmus fulva) - Rich in trace minerals that improve the health of the digestive tract.
    • Marshmallow (althaea officinalis) - remedy for digestive health and very effective in soothing the mucus membranes of the digestive tract.
  • Use RuniPoo Relief (description above) or one of the other natural treatments discussed in the "Severe Diarrhea" section above each time your dog's diarrhea comes back.
  • Add 2 to 3 drops of Rescue Remedy to your dog’s drinking water two times daily for the next 3 weeks. It will not matter if you have other dogs that drink from her water, as it will not hurt them. Rescue Remedy is for humans with anxiety, but for a dog with frequent urgency from chronic diarrhea, it will help to calm her and her gastrointestinal tract down.
  • Try the homeopathic remedy called Secale cornutum. If you can get 12c (smaller dogs) or 30c potency (bigger dogs), it will come in a vial with small pellets. Feed one pellet by mouth two times daily for 3 days. (Note: You are not supposed to touch the remedies with your fingers. They will come in a vial in which you remove the cap, tip the vial upside down and twist the opening so a pellet will drop out into the cap. Then 'pour' the pellet into her mouth. You can assist her by pulling out the side of her lower lip and just drop it into the area between her teeth and her cheek.)
  • Feed the herb Slippery Elm for a few days as discussed above.
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Top 5 Tips for Preventing Dog Diarrhea

  1. Don’t feed them fatty, sugary or spoiled people food.  Also avoid onions, dairy, citrus, grapes, raisins and chocolate.
  1. Keep them away from objects they can chew on or swallow such as plants or toys not specifically made for dogs
  1. Have puppies vaccinated the right way and keep them away from animals that have not been vaccinated
  1. Keep them on a steady and balanced natural dog food diet
  1. Have their stool checked at least once per year – more often if you live in an area known to have dog worms
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If you'd like more specific advice to your dog's situation, we’re happy to help.  Through our My Online Vet Ask-the-Veterinarian service, you can submit a picture of your dog along with a description of the issue.  Details should include:

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  • Your dog’s breed, age and gender
  • The progression of your dog's diarrhea (how long its gone on and what your dog's behavior has been like)
  • Your dog's diet before and after the diarrhea began
  • A photo of the diarrhea (gross, we know, but it may help with a diagnosis!) or at least a description of the way it looks (color, consistency, etc.)
  • Advice you have received from others, if any
  • What you have done to try to fix the problem, if anything, including dog diarrhea medicine given

dog diarrhea medicineCan't find your exact issue on this page? Our veterinarians will answer your specific question no later than tomorrow... click here to ask a veterinarian via My Online Vet.

You can also review pictures and questions submitted by other visitors in our My Online Vet Ask-A-Vet Library section on Dog Diarrhea.

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