Constipation in dogs is often attributed to their eating habits. Most pet dogs are not always well behaved when it comes to eating clean. Any dog breed may be affected by constipation at any point in their life. You know your dog is having a digestion problem if you notice he hasn’t defecated in two or more days.
Constipation in dogs may be a common condition, but if left untreated, can have a serious impact on their health in the long run. Your pet may be experiencing severe pain when trying to expel rock hard feces.
Apart from eating habits, a number of other factors are responsible for causing constipation in dogs. Here are some of the common causes.
Causes of constipation
Ingesting foreign objects
If your dog happens to swallow indigestible things such as debris, cloth, toys or grass, it can cause an obstruction and prevent the passage in the intestines. This condition can be very discomforting and cause serious problems, if not diagnosed immediately.
If your dog is eating mostly dry packaged food and not compensating it by drinking enough, then there are chances of being affected by constipation, as dry food has no moisture content. When waste moves through the colon, it draws water from it and if your pet is dehydrated, it leads to dry, hard stools. This is mostly seen in older dogs.
If the food you choose for your pet is lacking in fiber and quality, then your dog may experience constipation. Ensure that commercial food or homemade food that you serve consists of all the essential nutrients.
In certain dog breeds with long coat of hair, knots form around the anus when they grow too thick. The matted hair acts as a blockage, when trying to pass stools. It’s necessary to keep a check on tangled hair and cut it carefully to prevent constipation. Sometimes, dogs may ingest hair in the process of self-grooming and if done excessively, can lead to constipation.
In some cases, constipation is an indication of internal disorders such as kidney disease, tumors, enlarged prostate, hypothyroidism, worm infestation, hernia or neurological disorder.
If your pet is taking any medication for an ailment, constipation may result as a side effect of using that medicine. Lack of physical activity is another contributing factor of constipation in dogs.