Quick Fixes for Dog Diarrhea Caused by Diet Changes

Top Quick Fixes for Dog Diarrhea Caused by Diet Changes: Emergency Solutions!

dog with persistent diarrhea

Dealing with a beloved canine friend’s diarrhea can be a stressful and messy experience. Understanding the causes behind this common issue and knowing how to effectively treat it can make all the difference. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore symptoms, triggers, and quick fixes for dog diarrhea caused by diet changes, as well as methods to help manage and prevent this issue.

Key Takeaways

  • Identify potential dietary triggers for diarrhea in dogs.
  • Implement quick fixes such as fasting, a bland diet and hydration to alleviate symptoms.
  • Consult a veterinarian if your dog has persistent or additional symptoms such as vomiting, lethargy or weight loss.

Identifying Diet-Related Diarrhea


Before addressing the issue, it’s important to determine whether your dog’s diarrhea is related to their diet. Knowing the root cause can significantly improve the effectiveness of any treatment plan.

A dog’s diet plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy dog’s digestive system, which directly impacts the dog’s gut and dog’s stomach, and even the slightest alteration can lead to loose stools, an upset stomach, and changes in the dog’s stools.

Common Symptoms

When it comes to diet-induced acute diarrhea, the most typical signs include loose stools, increased bowel movements, and an urgent need to defecate. We should emphasize the difference between loose stools and diarrhea: loose stools are not classified as diarrhea unless they occur three or more times a day.

To identify abnormal dog poop, look for the following signs:

  • Unusually large volumes of excrement
  • A pudding-like or watery texture
  • Jelly-like mucus
  • Blood streaks

If your dog’s loose stool persists even after three days of a pumpkin and turkey bland diet, consulting their veterinarian is highly advisable.

Diet Triggers

Diet-induced diarrhea can be triggered by a variety of factors. Abrupt changes in food, low-quality ingredients, and food intolerances are common culprits. Foods such as dairy products, fried foods, raw meat, and sugary treats can also cause diarrhea in dogs. Hence, it is preferable to offer them bland food choices like pumpkin, turkey, or processed  rice.

Also, be mindful of potential allergens like beef, dairy, chicken, and soy, which can worsen the condition.

Quick Fixes for Diet-Induced Diarrhea


Once you’ve identified diet-related diarrhea, you can take immediate action to help your dog feel better. Implementing quick fixes like temporary fasting, a bland diet, and proper hydration support can alleviate your dog’s digestive discomfort.

Temporary Fasting

To give your dog’s gastrointestinal tract a much-needed break, withhold food for a brief period of time. For healthy adult dogs, it’s recommended to fast for 12 hours. During this time, ensure your dog has access to an adequate supply of water to avoid dehydration.

Fasting allows your dog’s intestines to clear out and rest, which can help alleviate symptoms and promote healing.

Bland Diet


After the fasting period, introduce a bland diet to soothe your dog’s digestive system and firm up their stools. A 50/50 mixture of 100% pure canned pumpkin and boiled fat-free turkey is recommended. This combination provides a gentle, high-fiber diet that is more easily digested than other foods. Pumpkin helps to slow down gut transit time and offer relief from irritation of bowels. Turkey also provides lean protein that is easy to digest. Remember to consult your veterinarian before making any changes to your dog’s diet, particularly if they have specific dietary requirements or health conditions.

Hydration Support

Maintaining proper hydration is important when handling dog diarrhea. Ensure your dog has access to fresh water throughout the day, as diarrhea can lead to dehydration. Administering an electrolyte solution may also be beneficial, especially if recommended by your veterinarian.

In any case, diligently monitor your dog’s water intake and consult a veterinarian if you notice any signs of dehydration or worsening symptoms.

Dietary Adjustments for Long-Term Relief


To prevent future episodes of diet-induced diarrhea, consider implementing long-term dietary adjustments. These may include:

  • Gradually transitioning to a new diet
  • Selecting high-quality dog food with natural ingredients and appropriate fiber content
  • Incorporating fiber-rich foods into your dog’s diet

Gradual Transitioning

When introducing a new diet to your dog, be sure to do so gradually to avoid digestive upset. Here’s how:

  1. Mix a small portion of the new food with the old food.
  2. Gradually increase the ratio of new food over the course of a few days.
  3. This slow transition allows your dog’s digestive system to adjust to the new food and minimizes the risk of diarrhea.

High-Quality Dog Food

Selecting high-quality dog food with natural ingredients and a suitable fiber content is key to maintaining your dog’s digestive health. Look for ingredients such as real meat, vegetables, and fruits, as well as vitamins and minerals. Avoid artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

The recommended crude fiber content for high-quality dog food is between 2.5% and 4.5%.

Fiber-Rich Foods

Incorporating fiber-rich foods into your dog’s diet can promote healthy digestion and help prevent diarrhea. Foods such as pumpkin, sweet potatoes, and bananas are high in fiber and can be beneficial for your dog’s gastrointestinal health. Aim for a daily fiber intake of approximately 5% for your dog.

Probiotics and Supplements

Probiotics and supplements can be a valuable addition to your dog’s diet, particularly when dealing with diet-induced diarrhea. These products can help improve digestion, balance gut flora, and support overall health.

Probiotic Benefits

Probiotics are supplements containing live, beneficial bacteria that naturally reside in your dog’s digestive system. They can help dogs digest food, absorb vitamins and minerals, and maintain a robust immune system.

By promoting a balanced intestinal microbial environment, probiotics can increase nutrient absorption, regulate digestion, and strengthen the immune system.

Supplement Options

Aside from probiotics, other supplements can support your dog’s digestive health. For example, digestive enzymes can facilitate the breakdown of food and promote digestion. Omega-fatty acids, particularly omega-3, have anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation in the digestive tract and soothe irritated intestines.

Always consult your veterinarian before introducing new supplements to your dog’s diet.

quick fixes for dog diarrhea caused by diet changes

When to Consult a Veterinarian


Though dietary adjustments and quick fixes can often aid in managing dog diarrhea, there are instances where consulting a veterinarian is necessary. Persistent diarrhea or additional symptoms may indicate a more serious issue that requires professional attention.

Persistent Diarrhea

If your dog’s diarrhea continues despite dietary adjustments and quick fixes, it’s time to seek advice from a veterinarian. Persistent diarrhea can be caused by various factors, such as parasites, chronic inflammatory enteropathies, or food-responsive enteropathies. Left untreated, chronic diarrhea can lead to dehydration, malnutrition, electrolyte imbalances, and a compromised immune system.

Additional Symptoms

Consult a veterinarian if your dog exhibits additional symptoms such as vomiting, lethargy, or weight loss. These could indicate a more serious underlying issue affecting your dog’s health, like viral infections, parasites, bacterial infections, or inflammatory bowel disease.

Puppies, senior dogs, and dogs with pre-existing conditions, such as diabetes, should be given immediate attention in the event of a dog’s diarrhea. A dog with diarrhea could face serious consequences if care is delayed.

Understanding the causes behind diet-induced dog diarrhea and implementing quick fixes, long-term dietary adjustments, and probiotics or supplements can help manage and prevent this common issue. Remember to consult your veterinarian for persistent diarrhea or if your dog exhibits additional symptoms, as early intervention can make all the difference in your dog’s health and well-being.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I stop my dog from having diarrhea after changing food?

If your dog has diarrhea after changing their food, stop the change and put them back on their old diet. After 48 hours, if the symptoms still haven't improved, feed them a bland diet for another 48 hours. During this time limit treats and provide small amounts of water frequently to keep them hydrated.

Can sudden change of food cause diarrhea in dogs?

Yes, sudden changes in a dog's food can cause diarrhea. This is due to the time it takes for their gastrointestinal tract to adjust to the new diet.

What is a suitable bland diet for dogs with diarrhea?

A suitable bland diet for dogs with diarrhea is a 50/50 mixture of 100% pure canned pumpkin and boiled fat-free turkey.

How long should I fast my dog with diarrhea?

It's recommended to fast your dog with diarrhea for 12 hours in order to give their gastrointestinal tract the necessary rest and healing time.

Related Articles about Sudden Diet Changes in Dogs

Sudden Diet Changes Causes
Preventing Diet Changes
Dog Diarrhea Diet Signs
Managing Diet Changes
Consult Vet Diet Shifts
Safe Dog Diet Changes
Balanced Diet For Dogs
Dog's Slow Diet Changes
Risks of Sudden Diet Changes

Dr. Jeff Kordell, DVM is a practicing veterinarian in the northern suburbs of Chicago. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois Veterinary School. Dr. Kordell owns Animal Medical Center at Fort Sheridan and has had his own private practice for over 30 years. He is the co-founder of K&S Veterinary Labs LLC the maker of DiarRice.