Every pet owner has had to clean up a “bathroom emergency” for their pup. It’s simply a fact of life. But if your pooch has a sensitive stomach, or you regularly deal with a dog upset stomach, there’s something on your local grocery store shelf that could help quite a bit.
Canned pumpkin can soothe your pet’s tummy and help get them back to normal. Here’s some information on why dogs sometimes have stomach issues, and how pumpkin can get their digestive systems working as they should.
Why Diarrhea Happens
It’s important to know exactly why your dog is suffering from diarrhea. If it only happens every once in a while, then he or she probably only has a mild upset stomach. You shouldn’t have much to worry about. But if it happens regularly, then you should find out what’s going on, and do something about it.
There are a lot of reasons why a dog will have a diarrhea attack. Thankfully, it’s usually something relatively minor. But there are times where diarrhea can be the result of something serious.
Eating a brand new dog food can sometimes lead to diarrhea. This will usually clear up on its own, but you can speed the process by giving your pooch a little plain, canned pumpkin.1
If, on the other hand, the diarrhea is bloody, or if your dog has attacks on a regular basis, get them your vet and see what the problem is … so that it can be treated.
How Pumpkin Works for Your Dog
Pumpkin has a great deal of fiber, and it’s loaded with vital minerals and vitamins. These include iron and potassium, as well as vitamins A, C, and E.2
The fiber in pumpkin helps with doggy diarrhea by absorbing water from stool. This, in turn, adds bulk to the stool. In addition, fiber helps your dog’s system do a better job of absorbing sodium and gives his or her cells the energy they need. Fiber also provides a food source to the beneficial bacteria in your pooch’s digestive tract. As a result, the good bacteria can do a better job of fighting the harmful microbes in your dog’s system.3
What Kind of Pumpkin and How Much Should I Give My Dog?
It’s very important that you speak with your vet to make sure how much pumpkin you should give your dog. The amount will vary according to the dog’s size.4
You should always make sure you only give your pooch plain, canned pumpkin. And that pumpkin should be free of any additives that could make a dog upset stomach worse. Never give your dog canned pumpkin pie filling. It often contains a toxic ingredient known as xylitol. Even a small amount of xylitol can be fatal to a dog.5
Also, it’s an unfortunate fact that canned pumpkin can spoil rather quickly once you open it. If you choose to keep the pumpkin in your refrigerator after giving it to your dog, always check it carefully before giving it to him or her again. At best, canned pumpkin lasts a matter of days in the fridge once it’s opened. Consider scooping the unused pumpkin in an ice tray and keeping it in the freezer. You can take out a block and give it to your dog once it thaws.
What About Pumpkin for Constipation?
One of the odd things about pumpkin is that it not only helps with diarrhea but constipation as well. Anywhere from 1-4 teaspoons with a meal can help ease your dog’s mild constipation. But it’s very important that you make sure your pup is very well hydrated before giving any sort of supplement that increases your pet’s fiber content. If your dog is dehydrated, pumpkin could actually make the problem worse.6
But as is the case with frequent diarrhea, you need to figure out why your dog is constipated if it happens regularly. Your pet could have some sort of foreign object lodged in the digestive tract. Your pet may have suffered some sort of injury to the pelvic area that makes it difficult to go to the bathroom.7 (Read more about your dog’s upset stomach and shaking here.)
Rice and a Dog Upset Stomach
A bland diet could also help if your pooch has tummy troubles. Give your pup boiled chicken with some rice or something else that your veterinarian recommends.8 Rice and chicken are found in many types of dog food, but you can make this staple of a bland diet very easily at home. Just make sure you only use plain, unseasoned chicken. You don’t want to give your dog anything that could make their stomach more upset. Simply cut the chicken into small pieces once it’s thoroughly cooked, and then add whatever amount of rice your vet advises. Do this for a week or two until symptoms subside.
If you noticed that your dog’s upset stomach is rumbling or making a gurgling sound, you can read about those stomach gurgling causes here.
One Final Thought
Again, if your furry friend only has diarrhea every once in a while, that shouldn’t be a cause for concern. On the other hand, if your pet has stomach problems on a regular basis, that’s when you need to get him to the vet. Your veterinarian might recommend that you avoid foods that could be contributing to the problem. Your vet’s advice will likely help get your best buddy on the road to feeling better and spry again in no time!