*Updated October 18, 2016*
Dogue de Bordeaux puppy diarrhea more often than not, looks worse than it actually is. Regardless, it can be alarming for owners to see their new baby in such a messy predicament. Tummy upsets are common in the breed for puppies and adults so expect your Dogue de Bordeaux to have the occasional bout of diarrhea. Knowing as much as possible about the issue might help limit the number of times your dog has one of these unpleasant episodes and reduce the duration when the runs do come.
There are significant differences between the way dogs and people digest food. Human jaw shape and salivary enzymes, for example, will start breaking down a morsel in the mouth. Dogs, on the other hand, have mouths and jaws made for tearing, crushing, and wolfing food down. Their salivary enzymes are mostly designed to kill bacteria, which is why they can tolerate items that would send their human companions to the hospital.
Food travels rapidly down the canine esophagus and enters the stomach in chunks, where most digestion takes place. Canine stomach acids are about three times strong than those of humans, so they can digest food that is pretty much intact. Under normal circumstances, transit time from mouth through the small and large intestines should be under 10 hours, producing a firm, well-formed stool at the end.
There are many reasons why a dog may develop loose stools, but most cases may be attributed to one of the following:
- Dietary indiscretion: In adults, the most cases of diarrhea are caused by “garbage gut”. Eating something they shouldn’t have, or something that did not agree with them, or simply eating too much.
- Stress or emotional upset: For puppies, especially when you first bring her/him home, adjusting to their new home and environment can be quite traumatic. You may notice your new puppy throw up, or have diarrhea until he/she has acclimated.
- Change in diet is a major culprit: Many owners have done their own research on what they will be feeding the new Dogue de Bordeaux puppy. If it differs from the diet they are used to here at Premiere Roux, be sure to make the transition SLOWLY. Click here to learn what we feed our Dogue de Bordeaux puppies.
- Ingesting a foreign object: This can definitely do the trick. Read this helpful article on what to do if you think your puppy has swallowed something he shouldn’t have.
- Antibiotics and other medications.
- Food Intolerance.
More serious causes could include:
- Parasites: Most of these will cause illness in puppies or in adults with weak immune systems: Roundworms, Hookworms, Whipworms, Coccidia, or Giardia.
- Illnesses, such as IBS (inflammatory bowel disease), and kidney/liver disease.
- Bacterial infections, such as salmonella.
- Infections with common viruses.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO
1. Stop feeding for 12 – 24 hours. Allow the stomach to rest. If there is nothing going in-there won’t be anything coming out!
2. One of the most dangerous things about diarrhea is the loss of water from the body. Keep him/her hydrated. Water should be available at all times. Diarrhea pulls huge amounts of fluids and important minerals from the body. If the diarrhea persists for longer than 48 hours, you need to counter those affects. Mix 1 part unflavored Pedialyte with 1 part water in the water dish and always make the dish available.
Pedialyte will replace electrolytes lost from vomiting or diarrhea.
3. Medication. You can use over the counter medicines to help control your Dogue de Bordeaux’s diarrhea. Pepto-bismal and Kaopectate are popular choices to treat stomach upsets in dogs. The easiest way to administer these medicines is orally with a needleless syringe. Safe dosage for both medicines is 1/2 – 1 tsp per 5 lbs body weight or 1 tbsp per 15 lbs. Do not to exceed 2 tbsp per dose.
4. My personal favorite for diarrhea are Endosorb tablets. Ensorob is formulated with a fibrous clay mineral that adsorbs toxins and toxic materials present in the gut. This adsorbent action helps to relieve the irritation discomfort and cramping associated with diarrhea.
After a fast, food is introduced slowly and many people start with binders, which can normalize stool consistency. Some tried-and-true methods include:
- Canned pumpkin (plain, not prepared pie filling) has the odd distinction of being effective for diarrhea and constipation.
- Yogurt has beneficial bacteria.
- Rice Water: Boil high-quality rice in a lot of water, remove the grains, and offer the dog the creamy white soup that is left. A splash of broth or a bit of baby food will make it more palatable.
- White rice
- Probiotics, live bacteria that aid digestion. I always have Probiotic Max on hand
- Boiled potatoes, without skin
- Cottage Cheese
- Plain protein sources like eggs or chicken (prepared with no butter or oil and no chicken skin)
- Herbs: Fennel has gut-smoothing properties
Methods that work for one dog may not help another. You may need to experiment a little to find the right formula.
WHEN TO CALL THE VET
In many cases, diarrhea will resolve after a few days of home treatment. Call your vet when the diarrhea lasts longer than two weeks.
Otherwise, the right time to contact a vet depends very much on what’s normal for your Dogue de Bordeaux adult or puppy. Some benchmarks that can suggest that you should at least consult with your vet:
- Other physical symptoms; lethargy, fever, vomiting, dry, tacky or pale gums, or weakness
- Diarrhea that does not stop despite home remedies that worked in the past
- Use of medication
- Existing conditions; advanced age, diabetes, Cushings, cancer, or any medical issue
- When things just don’t seem right. Respect your instincts and if you think you need veterinary guidance, pick up the phone
When a young puppy develops sudden watery diarrhea and exhibits additional symptoms such as vomiting. Or if the diarrhea is laced with blood. These can be signs of a serious disease such as distemper/parvovirus. All of our puppies will arrive to their new homes with the appropriate inoculations for their age as well as a vet’s certification of health. If you receive a puppy at 8-9 weeks old, he/she will have received their first round only. It is imperative that you take your puppy to the vet at the appropriate ages until immunizations are complete. Avoid high dog traffic areas until then.