some Common Causes
Constipation can be caused by:
- Poor diet
- Change of diet
- An excessive bone intake
- Eating clumpable cat litter
- Excessive fur licking
- Consumption of foreign objects, stones in particular appear to be a favourite snack of Spinoni!
- Antibiotic or other medications
- Surgery: Dogs are often fasted or cleaned out before surgery and it can often take a while for things to get moving again.
- Try adding extra fibre to your dog's diet through the use of pumpkin, butternut squash or sweet potatoes. Tinned pumpkin if you are lucky enough to have access to it is an excellent standby for the First Aid cupboard.
- Ensure that if you are feeding bones to your dog, you are also feeding an adequate supply of meat.
- If your dog has been licking their fur a lot, it's time to groom your dog!
- Lactulose is a handy standby for the FIrst Aid Kit and will provide gentle relief from constipation.
- Liquid Paraffin also acts as a stool softener but is not quite as gentle as Lactulose.
When to call the vet
In most cases the cause of constipation is very obvious and easy to treat. However, if your dog is often constipated for no apparent reason and dietary adjustments have given no relief, check with your vet. Chronic constipation can be a symptom of kidney disease and for male dogs it could also indicate trouble with the prostate gland. If you know that your dog has eaten clumpable litter, phone your vet immediately as this can often lead to an obstruction.
This handsome chap is Ecco D'Oro, a much-loved member of the Havens Hines family. A perennial mischief maker, he once feasted on an entire tray of clumpable kitty litter. Clumpable litter expands and sets hard inside the dog making it impossible to vomit or defecate. This form of obstruction can prove fatal very quickly. Thankfully his owners acted quickly and the vet was able to save him.