We write about products and services that we use. This page may contain affiliate links for which we receive a commission.
I used to work at a vet.
While there, I learned a few “home remedies” for some common pet ailments, including the dreaded dog diarrhea.
Here are the best home remedies for treating a case of diarrhea in your dog.
But how do you know when it’s time to see the vet?…
Keep This In Mind…
Diarrhea is a SYMPTOM of something else going on in your pet’s system.
It occurs when food travels through the digestive system too quickly — resulting in insufficient moisture being absorbed.
This usually happens when the intestines become irritated and inflamed.
Your dog’s intestinal distress could be anything from a mild case of upset stomach from something he ate to a sign of something more serious including worms, parasites, or even cancer.
Vet or No Vet?
Fortunately, most episodes of dog diarrhea that have sudden onset, are easily cured, and occur infrequently. They’re just a fact of doggiehood.
- A bland diet will normally help a bunch.
- You can also give your dog an all-natural probiotic for dog diarrhea. Probiotics work wonders at resolving your dog’s symptoms and discomfort practically overnight. Another popular brand (also developed by a veterinarian) is called Diarrice.
Technically, diarrhea becomes clinically significant after 48 hours.
Therefore, if any of these are true:
- The diarrhea has lasted a couple days
- Your dog is weak and lacks energy
- There are additional problems (such as vomiting or blood in the stool)
…then it is time to have a veterinarian examine your dog, no matter how long the diarrhea has been happening.
So, while home remedies could save you some money in a pinch, you should always consult with your veterinarian — at least via phone call — if the diarrhea has lasted more than 2 days.
If you really want to play it safe, then phone your veterinarian and let them know the very moment you notice that your dog has diarrhea. Be sure to mention any other “symptoms” you’ve noticed, as well. Chances are, they’ll tell you to follow the same advice mentioned here for the first 24 to 48 hours.
My Best Advice If Your Dog Has Diarrhea
Personally, if a dog has diarrhea for more than 2 days in a row — then YES, I would definitely take that dog to the vet. Sooner rather than later. At the very least, a phone call to the vet is in order for some personal guidance over the phone from your vet.
Keep in mind that “home remedies” should only be applied at the onset of diarrhea (the moment you first notice it)… before it has had time to wear your dog down and before it has managed to freak you out as a caring dog owner. The more time that’s passed, the more urgency that you get your dog to the vet.
At the very least you should call your vet to get their advice over the phone. Be honest with them and they’ll be honest with you. Trust their judgment.
Also, the younger the dog is, the sooner it needs to be seen by a vet when diarrhea strikes. Why? Because diarrhea usually signals something much more serious going on than just an upset tummy in puppies. And a simple case of diarrhea can quickly get out of control with a young puppy.
The same applies to very old, senior dogs too. Always think of puppies and senior dogs as having “a compromised immune system”. Dogs are usually not operating at full-strength at very young and very old ages.
Here’s another valuable tip that I wasn’t aware of until I started working at the vet:
You don’t always have to take your pet to the vet to obtain a diagnosis (and meds if there’s a problem). With diarrhea, for example, you could simply take a recent sample of your pet’s stool to the vet. (Yes, even the runny diarrhea can be “grabbed” using a plastic baggie.) The veterinarian’s “fecal test” is generally very inexpensive ($10 to $15) and works wonders for giving you peace of mind!
I like to help Dog Parents find unique ways to do things that will save time & money — so I write about “outside the box” Dog Tips and Dog Hacks that most wouldn’t think of. I’m a lifelong dog owner — currently have 2 mixed breed Golden Aussies that we found abandoned on the side of the road as puppies. I’ve always trained my own dogs and help friends train theirs, as well. Professionally, I worked at a vet and have several friends who are veterinarians — whom I consult with regularly. (And just because I love animals so much, I also worked at a Zoo for awhile!) I’ve been sharing my best ideas with others by blogging full-time since 1998 (the same year that Google started… and before the days of Facebook and YouTube). My daily motivation is to help first-time dog owners be better prepared from the first day your new puppy enters your home. I like to help dog owners understand what’s ‘normal’ and what you can expect in terms of living with and training your dog — how to get through the ups & downs of potty training, chewing, teaching commands, getting your dog to listen, and everything else that takes place during that hectic first year! When I’m not training, walking, grooming, or making homemade treats for my dogs, you will find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites). To date, I’ve written over 600 articles for dog owners on this site! Many of them have upwards of 200K shares.