How to Treat a Dog That Is Constipated
I want to talk a little bit about the possibility of your dog being constipated. It's one of those topics that's very misunderstood I think because I've had maybe 90% of the animals presented to me where the owners thought they were constipated and it was really some other kind of a problem. Animals can strain because they have bladder stones. They can strain because they have bladder infections. And so the real key is if the animal is trying and trying and trying to pass stool and is unable to then there may very well be a constipation problem. It's not going to really hurt a dog if you want to give them an enema but it's probably better to have your veterinarian check the dog first and be sure that that's what the problem is. Occasionally I've had animals that have come to me and the owners have been waiting and waiting and really should have been seen earlier because the owners thought it was constipation and it was a more serious disease. So today I wanted to show you a little bit about how to prevent that. You can prevent constipation by having a proper diet for your dog. And I believe in the super quality dog foods. Science Diet, the Eukanuba, Iams are all super good diets that are going to help your dog not have this kind of a problem. The other thing that I think is if you know your dog or if you know your dog is having a problem with constipation you can start adding Metamucil into the diet. Another thing that's really helpful is to add a little pumpkin to the diet. You can get canned pumpkin from your grocery store and just start adding a little bit, like a tablespoon, into your dogs food everyday and you'll start seeing that they have normal stools. It's very high in fiber and that can help with that problem. But if your dog actually is having constipation it can get so bad if a dog can't pass stool that they can actually start throwing up because they have a physiological obstruction in their colon. And so in those cases we do wind up having to give an enema. What you can do for dogs is you can get a regular fleet enema that you can buy at the grocery store. And another reason that I think it might be an important thing for your veterinarian to do this if your dog has an obstruction or if he has cancer, a tumor that's blocking, this would not be appropriate. The other thing that I have found is dogs really don't like this very much. And so if an owner is trying to do it the animal may bite them. Once again you can see it's just a regular, called a Fleet Enema. It's a phosphorous enema. That means it has phosphate in it. By the way it should never be used in cats. You can kill a cat with a phosphate enema. The top comes off and you can see the tip is already lubricated. You can ease that into the animals rectum and in a dog that's anything bigger than 40 pounds you can use the whole enema. What's going to happen is within the next hour or so you can completely evacuate all of the colon. There are other types of enemas. We have these mini enemas which are really kind of nice because they're very small and that makes them really easy to use. You can see they come in one dose and you throw it away. And these are a different kind of enema that actually is called a stimulation type of an enema. It uses a very small amount but it irritates the colon a little bit which causes them to have increased motility and that gets rid of any stool that's in the colon. One other one, this is one that's specifically designed for veterinarians. And again it's really kind of nice, it's called a pet enema. It's nice because it's a one dose syringe and the volume is not very large because it is also one of the, we call it an irritant type of an enema.