Thursday, January 27, 2011

Diarrhea! Cha! Cha! Cha!


There, I said it, the dreaded "D" word!

Here's the scoop (there I go again)... Dealing with your dog when he or she has Diarrhea is not fun at all. Some folks really get worried when it happens, especially if there is a bit of blood mixed with the stool. I am here to tell you not to worry and to "check yourself" (mentally) before rushing off to the vet and recieving a bill. Please note, we at FORT FIDO are not vets, please consult with your veterinarian if you believe your dog has a serious problem!

With that said, working at a Doggie Daycare means that your life revolves around poo hahaha or let me rephrase that, we know a lot about it and enjoy talking to our customers about their pet's individual bowel movements (I'm kidding!). 99.9% of the time, when your dog comes down with a case of "the runs" it is because they have ate something that did not agree with them. One more time, THEY ATE SOMETHING! It is no different than us... I'm sure we've all ate a bad plate of enchiladas right? Things happen, it's not fun and we are constantly running to the bathroom but you know what? We do not rush ourselves to the ER and generally bounce back to a more comfortable potty situation after a few days.

I'm telling you to just wait it out... Give it a day, be a detective and find out what your pet got into. We have heard and unfortunately seen it all: Doggie Almond Roca (yup, cat turds), a stick of butter and three dried starfish, refrigerator clean outs, steak bones, etc... On MULTIPLE OCCASIONS I've pulled panty hose and men's tube socks (I'm talkin size 12, knee-high ones with the red stripes) out of dogs bums, can you believe it!? Be careful everybody, let's avoid a catastrophic vet trip by being proactive.

Don't get me wrong, it is fun to give a dog a treat but you really have to be mindful of what and how much you are giving them. Many times treats can upset our dog's system and then they tear it up! If you are using treats for training, just put some of your pups normal kibble into a baggy then treat away! They don't know the difference, they just want something. That trick can keep the poop to a normal consistency.

It is true, Diarrhea can be a symptom of a more serious illness (Giardia for example, again check with your vet if you believe this is the case) but in our experience, most of the time, it isn't! The key is to be conscious of how your dog acts... Are his or her energy levels the same? Is he or she eating? Is he or she listless? Lethargic? Etc... If your dog is acting normal, chances are, your dog is fine! Give it 24 hours, monitor them, keep them on their NORMAL DIET and save yourself the drama/vet bill.

Diarrhea is especially a bummer at daycare, dogs with diarrhea are extra work for the crew here. Often times we must crate the animal periodically throughout the day to manage the mess. Some daycare's even charge extra if your dog has it. We don't plan on adopting that policy, we just want everyone to help us (and their pet) out by being mindful of their canine's diet.

All for now, I'm pooped!

P.S. One final thought I forgot to mention. Nerves can also play a roll in an upset tummy, if your pet has recently been in a stressful situation they may come down with the rhea. If they are acting normal after the event, things should balance out in a day or so. Just as if they ate those rotten enchiladas. ;)