How to prevent your dog suffering from constipation

Tips for helping your dog to relieve itself.

How to prevent your dog suffering from constipation

In this article we will tell you how to help your dog relieve itself. The first thing you should know is that a healthy diet and regular exercise are the best weapons against constipation if your dog suffers from it frequently.

Constipation is a fairly common problem for our four-legged friends, but you should not ignore it - quite the contrary!

Stools always reveal the state of our dog's health, so it is important to assess their consistency and colour. Liquid and unformed faeces are usually a sign that the intestine is not healthy. Hard stools indicate a lack of fibre and dehydration.

In both cases, it is best to ask your vet for advice and to make sure your best friend gets the help he or she needs to feel better.

Oh, and don't forget that feeding a healthy, balanced diet is really important to prevent tummy problems. That's why we recommend you read our tips on how to choose the best kibble for dogs with tummy problems.

Now let's talk about how to help your dog relieve itself if it has constipation.

Possible causes of constipation in dogs

If you've noticed that your dog is having a hard time relieving itself, you may see it trying to relieve itself but not succeeding, or it may only manage to produce hard pellets. Sometimes it even looks as if it hurts to try or is very difficult.

This happens when faeces spend too long in the colon, where water is absorbed. This causes your pet's stools to become harder and harder.

The longer it goes on, the worse the problem becomes, because the faeces will become even harder and accumulate.

In general, a dog should relieve itself two or three times a day, depending on its lifestyle and habits.

If this is not the case, there is no cause for immediate alarm, but it is important to speak to your vet for advice and reassurance.

However, it is important to understand the difference between acute and chronic constipation. The former is a short-lived problem that comes and goes, while the latter is more severe and lasts longer.

There are many things that can cause constipation in dogs and sometimes they need a thorough examination by a vet to find out exactly what is wrong.

These are the reasons why your dog finds it difficult to relieve itself:

  • a low-fibre diet;
  • eating something unusual that could block its bowels;
  • lack of physical activity;
  • dehydration;
  • diseases of the intestine and colon;
  • prostate enlargement (in male dogs);
  • full anal sacs;
  • hernia;
  • leg disorders that prevent the dog from squatting;
  • side effects of medicines.

How to help your dog to relieve itself: the importance of food

Constipation can have serious consequences for your dog's health, which is why it is so important to act quickly.

After a thorough examination, the vet  will give you a specific programme depending on the cause of the constipation.

However, we can tell you that if you want to know how to help your dog to relieve itself, knowing that a correct diet is the best weapon to prevent these problems is very important.

A complete, balanced diet will help prevent the risk of constipation.

It is important, for example, for your dog's food to contain the right amount of fibre, because fibre has a beneficial effect on the intestine.

There are two types of fibre: soluble and insoluble.

In other words, the former turns into a kind of gel when it dissolves in water during digestion. This slows down the process and helps the intestine absorb excess water. In addition, the soluble fibres contain prebiotic substances that feed the good gut bacteria (such as bifidobacteria and lactobacilli) and help regulate transit in the intestine.

Insoluble fibres, on the other hand, do not hydrate, which makes it easier for food to pass through the colon.

Both are therefore important for the correct functioning of the intestine.

So, it is clear that adding fibre to the diet of our four-legged friends has many benefits: it improves the digestion of food, modifies the gut microbiota for the better and regulates the gut.

Our kibble, for example, are specially designed to promote intestinal transit.

Another recommendation to ensure that your dog is able to relieve itself properly is to give it wet food as well, as this improves hydration due to the increased amount of liquids it contains.

In addition, it is important to feed regularly. Feeding your dog at set times means it becomes  used to the digestion process.

How to help your dog relieve himself: other things you should know

We have talked about nutrition and mentioned the importance of hydration. Always remember that fluids are essential for a dog's well-being.

Another tip to help your dog relieve itself is to encourage it to drink. Water softens the stool and makes it easier to pass. You can add warm water or broth (never salty!) to kibble or, as suggested above, give wet food.

Above all, don't forget that must always be fresh water to drink throughout the day.

On the other hand, never forget the importance of exercise: to maintain the balance of your dog's digestive system, it is important that it gets regular exercise. In fact, this helps the faeces to move through the colon and therefore be evacuated properly. Take your four-legged friend for a walk several times a day and remember the importance of activity: playing fetch is the perfect way to cheer up even the laziest dog!

We hope these tips will help you if your dog finds it difficult to relieve itself.

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