Is My Dog’s Poop Normal?
Ask any veterinarian and they’ll tell you that a pet’s poop can tell them a lot about their overall health and digestive system.
That’s why it’s always a good idea to take note of their stools on a daily basis. If you see a change for more than two cycles you should notify your pup’s veterinarian, say the pet health experts at petted.com.
Additionally, they recommend observing the “Four Cs of Poop,” which are:
1. Color — Normal, healthy stools are chocolate-brown in color and don’t dramatically change in size. Subtle changes can result due to diet, hydration, dyes in their food.
However, some abnormal color patterns and their possible cause are as follows:
- Black stool: bleeding high in the digestive tract can cause a tar-colored stool
- Red streaks: can be indicative of bleeding in the lower digestive tract
- Grey or yellow stools: may indicate issues with the pancreas, liver or gall bladder
2. Consistency — Some vets actually use a fecal scoring system from 1 to 7 to describe its consistency. For example, the number 1 represents very hard pellets and 7 is a puddle. The ideal stool ranks number 2 and is a firm segmented piece that has the consistency of Play-Doh and is caterpillar shaped, according to petmd.com.
A formless stool can indicate that the large intestine is having difficulty reabsorbing water while a hard stool can be painful to pass and be the result of dehydration. If your pooch passes an occasional sour soft or hard stool it’s probably not need for concern. However, if it occurs more often notify a veterinarian.
3. Content — If the inside of your pooch’s poop looks different than the rest of it there are things to be on the lookout for. In a fresh sample if your find:
- Worms: roundworms are long and skinny; tapeworms resemble grains of rice
- Foreign materials, including grass, pieces of socks, plastic, rocks
- Fur: large clumps of fur can indicate over-grooming caused by stress, allergies, skin disease or boredom
4. Coating — Your pet’s poop should not have a coating of film on it, nor should it leave any sort of trail when you pick it pop to dispose of it. A coating of mucous can be indicative of large bowel inflammation.
Most poop issues clear up in 24 hours. If your pooch is eating, drinking and behaving normally otherwise it’s probably okay to give it a day to sort itself out, the petmd.com experts said.
It’s always a good idea to consult with your pet’s veterinarian whenever you have questions or want peace of mind about their health issues, right down to the appearance of their poop!