View Full Version : Recurrent diarrhea

6th April 2007, 04:37 AM
Ok, I have a slight problem with Bertie and would like to work to get it under control.

He keeps getting diarrhea lately, I guess for around the past month, it's not watery but is very runny poop.

He has been on James Wellbeloved kibble since he was a pup, the breeder had them on it and I have kept him on it. With JWB they can be put onto adult at six months so I put him onto it around that time, he is now 9 months.

I have been buying the James Wellbeloved treats for him as opposed to lots of other things to try and get this diarrhea under control, I figured keeping his treats hypo allergenic would be a good idea. He has always had tripe sticks from around four months old and a couple of other treats that haven't disagreed with him to the best of my knowledge (ie: no diarrhea from them in the past).

I am trying to work out what it is causing this problem, it happens a few times a week now. Trouble is, people leave scraps in the park, drop their litter, don't bother to pick it up etc which makes it very difficult to monitor the situation when Bertie decides it's great fun to eat everything he finds.

He had two days where the diarrhea cleared up and I took him to the beach yesterday evening, great fun for Bertie by the pier, lots and lots of peoples rubbish, melted ice cream on the ground where kids had dropped it, bits of this and bits of that, so much so that I couldn't get Bertie to come back to me for his usual treat reward.

During the night, he has had an accident indoors and you guessed it, diarrhea.

So, I'm wondering a couple of things here. Firstly, if he's needing to go out and I'm not waking up for him, could holding on bring on a bout of diarrhea? Probably not but it's worth considering to rule it out at least.

Secondly, how do I train him not to eat every single thing he finds on the ground? Difficult one methinks.

Thirdly, would it be worth muzzling him for a while when we go out so that he cannot eat the scraps on the ground in order to monitor properly what he IS actually eating being given by me?

I really don't like the idea of muzzling him but for the sake of his health, maybe it's a good idea to at least try and find out what exactly is causing the diarrhea. The downsides are that, a) It makes rewarding with a treat when he comes when called a bit difficult and b) muzzles can put the fear of god into people as they automatically think it's on for aggression and no other reason.

I could of course keep him on a lead but even then, he still manages to get hold of things and also, I really enjoy letting him run around, he loves it and is generally very good about coming back to me, give or take the odd time of selective deafness, usually when he finds something tasty on the ground.

Muzzling kind of seems like a good idea, just for a period of around a month to monitor very closely and accurately. Once I've got it sussed, I can then start to leave the muzzle off depending on where we are walking. For example, if I take him to the beach at the end of the day when tourists and the like have been dropping their rubbish, I would know to muzzle him and if I took him somewhere relatively free of this sort of thing, I would know it's reasonably safe to leave the muzzle off if that makes sense.

Sorry to ramble on, just would like peoples opinions as I would like to try and get to the bottom of the diarrhea (no pun intended) rather than just leave it to keep coming back. If he still had the problem after being muzzled and not being able to pick up god knows what, then I would know it's nothign to di with diet or that the diet he's on isn't agreeing with him. Am I making sense?

Anyway, any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


PS He doesn't get sick or anything, is his usual lively self and doesn't get more thirsty than normal when he gets the diarrhea.

6th April 2007, 05:07 AM
I wish I could offer more advice - Lucky's been loose too lately, but he had chronic colitis as a puppy, so I'm not too surprised by it anymore. :-(

For us, I think it ties back to the bully sticks I gave him last weekend - he was going bonkers chewing away at a huge braided stick ... Not sure, but he'd never had that much in one sitting, I think it upset his stomach. So anyway, advice I'd give is to watch what treats you give and notice if there is something new that has been given in the last month or so since the problems started. It sounds though like you are doing this.

As for keeping him from eating everything on the ground - have you taken him to obedience class? If so "Leave it" is a very very useful command. Lucky's pretty good at dropping stuff when I say "leave it" - you might try practicing it indoors, and then taking it out on walks.

In terms of waking up at night - does he sleep with you in bed or no? Lucky does sleep on my bed most of hte time and when he's had the dreaded "D" this past week he wakes up in the middle of the night and walks around my face which tells me he has to go out - otherwise he's quiet and sleeps all night long. Not sure if all dogs are the same, but I got a wake up call at 4:30 am on Tuesday morning when Lucky couldn't hold it anymore.

Poor babies. I hope they both get over their tummy troubles soon. :flwr:

6th April 2007, 11:01 PM
He knows the leave it command but when his mind is really set on something, it doesn't always work unfortunately. I'm constantly working on it and eventually we will get it right.

Yes, he sleeps with me, always has done and usually wakes me if he needs out. Last night was no exception but I needed a wee and couldn't hold it and he couldn't hold his poo long enough for me to be done, bless him.

I've always been quite strict with his treats and gradually introduced new things. I am 90% sure it's the crap he picks up that selfish people drop and don't bother to clean up after themselves that causes the problems.

He hasn't got hold of anything today though so hopefully he will be fine tonight and his poops have been fine all day so fingers crossed.

I'm going to avoid the beach for now I think until it's all under control again, could be that he ingested sand and salt which would probably upset his tummy.

Such delicate little tummies these cavvies seem to have, little darlings.


7th April 2007, 12:37 AM
Before even thinking of all the other things:

** You need to take him to a vet right away** . They may want you to bring in a stool sample so ask about this when you make an appt.

It could be anything from a worm load (you won't necessarily see the worms,) to giardia, food allergy, various tummy bugs, food intolerance, or a sign of other illness. Any time diarrhea is chronic and/or recurrent you really need to immediately get in to see the vet. That means there is a problem.

It is very unlikely to be related to eating things on the pavement so please do not muzzle though as noted it would be a good idea to do some training to teach him drop it and leave it. Dogs have very tough stomachs ad can eat some pretty horrible stuff with no bother. If it makes you feel any better, mine are sidewalk hoovers and hardly ever eat anything that disagrees with them. A dog can still eat things through a muzzle anyway so this isn;t a solution unless the food is really large -- mostly stuff they find isn't.

9th April 2007, 01:26 PM
My Ellie also had this problem for a few weeks. She would have a bad case of diarrhea for a day or so and then runny stools for a while after. Then she would get better and then it happened again so we took her to the vet last Friday They did a stool sample and there were no parasites. Turns out she was still in season though after we though she wasnt (she stopped bleeding) and the vet suspected her efforts to keep herself clean had actually made her somewhat ill. He suggested a bland meal of rice and chicken for a few days and to just wait out her season. So far she has been better and no more runny stools

Now I know that doesnt help you much as your lil guy is a boy but it does show that sometimes things they get into have some what of bad effect on them. On the other note though I would take him to the vet and get a stool samples ASAP just to rule out parasites as that was my big fear with Ellie. Once your vet checks him out he will be able to better advise you as what the next steps are to take as there are a lot of different ways to help diarrhea I have read and it got me all confused as which and what to use so I would say get to the vet soon and get the stool sample checked first for parasites and then take it from there

Good luck and I hope he is feeling better soon I know how stressing it can be for you as the owner when your baby is sick

9th April 2007, 05:43 PM
I just got over this with Zoey. It was absolute hell because it began right in the beginning of the food recall so my vet and I were panicked to figure out what was wrong with her. We ran fecal examines, a float and a smear and found no parasites, but we still couldn't determine what was wrong. The vet gave me Hill's I/D, which didn't agree with her because she hadn't eaten grains AT ALL because the Innova Evo is grain free. Eventually, it just went away on it's own...

Cody went through the same thing as a puppy, we never did figure out what was causing it, but thankfully it went away even though it had lasted for weeks. Knock on wood, but both of them have been fine since. A food change seemed to be the cure in both instances.

I agree that it warrents a trip to the vet, just to be sure there isn't something underlying going on. Good Luck!

9th April 2007, 06:26 PM
I agree, I would get to the vet as soon as I could, just to rule out something serious. Bentley had a bout of loose stools a while back, and fortunately a brief change of diet (boiled chicken and rice) and some canned pumpkin did the trick.

10th April 2007, 01:28 AM
Well, since posting my original message, I have managed to keep Bertie from eating anything on the ground and he's had no diarrhea. As for dogs not getting upset stomach from picking stuff up on the ground, I strongly disagree with that as my previous dog had the same problem until I managed to get her to leave stuff alone.

We don't have Gardia over here in the uk either so it's not that, as for worms, he's wormed regularly so I doubt it's that.

My last dog, Honey, she had a food intolerance and kept getting loose/runny stools as well. I put her on James Wellbeloved and it sorted it really quickly. Bertie is on the same food as she was on and I now only give him James Wellbeloved treats since the last bout of the runs.

I do appreciate peoples advice but strongly disagree that it's not a food intolerance. I know my dog well and know when this diarrhea business started and what he's eaten when it occurs.

I will however take him to the vets should it happen again now that he's not picking the stuff up off the ground so much.


10th April 2007, 03:01 AM
Glad to hear his diarrhea has gone away. That's just no fun when that happens.