Last Updated on May 21, 2021 by adrienne hardwick
When your dog has a bad stomach, it is not a pleasant experience – for you or them. The constant running to the back door, the likely accidents in the home when they don’t make it in time. All you want is to make it stop.
But what can you give your dog to stop diarrhoea fast??
Plain rice and chicken, 24-hour fasting, and scrambled eggs are all great things to give your dog to stop diarrhoea fast. Without food, your dog will have little to nothing to pass, and the bland foods are gentle on their digestive system to help it settle.
If your dog is suffering from some digestive distress, we have everything you need to know right here at your fingertips. Let’s help your pup feel better.
Why Does My Dog Have Diarrhoea?
One of the most common causes of diarrhoea in dogs is scavenging – picking up and eating things they shouldn’t while on a walk is a prime example. This can cause them to have an upset stomach for a few days, especially after munching on an old rabbit carcass (been there).
However, a change in diet can also trigger an upset stomach. If you change their food over too quickly, this can lead to diarrhoea and general discomfort. This is why their food should be changed gradually over the course of a week (or more).
It could also be caused by food intolerances and allergies, although you will find that these cases of diarrhoea are chronic and regular. When this happens, you can take them to the vet for an allergy test to see what’s going on.
The important thing to remember is that the vast majority of diarrhoea cases will resolve themselves and WON’T require a vet visit. We have a little more on when to see a vet further down in this guide.
What to Feed a Dog with Diarrhoea?
The important thing is to avoid their kibble and any rich foods for up to three days after the diarrhoea starts. If your dog has an upset stomach, these are the things you can feed them:
- Chicken and plain rice
- Whitefish and plain rice
- Brown rice (white is fine, brown is better)
- Wholemeal pasta
- Plain potatoes
- Porridge oats cooked in water
- Scrambled eggs
All of these are very bland and gentle foods, which means they will not further upset your dog’s stomach. They should only need to eat this at mealtimes for up to three days and their portions should be fairly small as well as spread out throughout the day.
This keeps things gentle on their stomach so that things can keep moving smoothly without the risk of there being too much – which could cause further stomach upsets. They are also binding foods, helping to firm up your dog’s stools.
Fasting Your Dog
If your dog is not throwing up you don’t have to starve them for 24-hours. However, there is nothing wrong with withholding food while their digestive system settles either.
What you do need to keep in mind is that only a HEALTHY adult dog should fast when unwell. Puppies and seniors should NOT fast at all, and adult dogs who are in poor health should also refrain from fasting.
Fasting should never be for more than 24-hours, and if your vet advises that your puppy or senior dog fasts it should not go over 12 hours.
Reintroduce Solids Slowly
Once the diarrhoea stops, don’t put them straight back on their regular food. Instead, you should mix their kibble with the bland food you have been feeding them for the next two or three days. This helps them get used to the kibble again.
If you put them straight back on their regular food, it can be quite a shock to the system and may result in their upset stomach returning. This method is gentler and means your dog is less likely to suffer from any gastric distress.
Supplements for Diarrhoea
There are a few supplements that you can give your dog to help the symptoms of their diarrhoea and also replace the electrolytes that are lost during their illness to keep them in good health. All of these are available from your vet, make sure you speak to them first.
Oralade. This is used to replace the electrolytes lost during diarrhoea and vomiting, keeping them hydrated and healthy throughout. Usually, it is flavoured with chicken or something meaty to keep them interested and encourage them to drink more.
All you need to do is add a little to their drinking water and they will gulp it down. Just watch they don’t drink too fast – one of my dogs became obsessed, drank a whole bowl, threw all the water straight back up again.
Probiotics/Prebiotics. These usually come in a paste form and can be added to their food as well as syringed directly into their mouth (ideal for really fussy dogs). It is used to help improve the balance of micro-organisms in the intestinal tract and combat bacterial overgrowth.
It is completely natural, simply helping to improve your dog’s intestinal health so that they can battle their stomach bug faster and also ensure their intestinal tract remains in good condition for the foreseeable future.
If you want to help treat the symptoms of diarrhoea in your pup, there are some over-the-counter medications that you can give them. These will all be available at your vets as well as online. Make sure you speak to your vet before giving your dog any medications.
Diarrhoea Tablets. These work a lot like Imodium does for human, settling the stomach and stopping diarrhoea from occurring. It gives your dog a little peace while they are recovering, making things less stressful for them (and for you rushing to the door in time).
There are loads of different brands and types available, which is why it is essential that you speak to your vet before you try any of them out.
Take a look at these Fillipet Anti Diarrhoea tablets, packs of 10 tablets which should be plenty to stop your dog’s diarrhoea over a period of the week.
Diarrhoea Powder. This can be sprinkled on their bland food or added to their water, it depends on the brand and the instructions. It works to soothe the digestive tract and slow the passage of food, making it easier for your dog to digest things without the risk of an upset stomach.
It also increases the absorption of nutrients, which makes it a good choice for dogs who have chronic gastrointestinal issues. As always, consult your vet first and see what they feel is the best option for your dog.
Warning Signs That Dog Diarrhoea Needs a Vet
Of course, not all diarrhoea is free from worry. While it is unlikely your dog has anything serious, it is better to be safe than sorry. There are a few conditions that make diarrhoea concerning such as infection, parasites, poisoning, or a virus.
It can also be a sign of colitis, a common stomach virus in dogs (a little like D&V in humans). It is an inflammation of the large intestine or colon, and if your dog has bloody vomit or diarrhoea it is likely they have colitis and will need to see a vet.
In most cases, colitis is treated at home with rest, bland food, and some anti-inflammatories/antibiotics. In rare cases, your pup may need to stay at the vet for a few days to receive fluids through an IV to rehydrate them.
Take a look at this guide of all the best dog food’s for colitis, changing your dog’s diet really can get this virus under control.
In puppies, parvovirus is the most dangerous form of diarrhoea. They should be vaccinated against it, so the risk only really lies with unvaccinated puppies. Parvovirus is often fatal because puppies are so small and it is easy for them to become dehydrated quickly.
If it smells foul, contains blood, is black and tar-like or if it’s accompanied by pain, fever, sickness and loss of appetite, it is highly likely that it is parvovirus and you will need to contact your vet immediately.
Here are some general warning signs to look out for in your dog’s diarrhoea so that you know when to call a vet:
- Bloody diarrhoea
- Bloody vomit
- Black stools
- Sticky stools that are black or bloody
How do I keep my dog hydrated with diarrhoea?
The best way to keep your dog hydrated when they have diarrhoea is to ensure that they have access to plenty of fresh water at all times and also give them electrolytes. You can pick these up from the vet and they will replace lost energy.
Should I starve my dog if he has diarrhoea?
Absolutely, you should starve your dog for 24 hours if they have diarrhoea but only if they are an adult in good health. Puppies, seniors, and adults in poor health should not be starved as this can make them sicker. Take a look at our guide for the best dog foods for diarrhoea.
What home remedy can I give my dog for diarrhoea?
Plain rice and cooked chicken is the best home remedy to give your dog for diarrhoea. It is gentle on the digestive system to help settle their stomach and prevent it from being aggravated further. You can also give them a little scrambled egg for the same reasons.
Now you know how simple stopping diarrhoea in your dog can be. Fasting, bland foods, and the slow reintroduction of their regular food is the best way to go. You also know the signs of more serious conditions, so you can take your dog to the vet as soon as things start to look wrong.
Did you find this informational guide helpful? If so, we have a whole series of canine care guides that are sure to pique your interest. Training, health, and the foods they can and cannot eat are just some of the things we cover – helping you take better care of your pup.
For over a decade, Adrienne has been a freelance content writer and blogger who’s passion lies in anything related to dogs. Growing up, dogs were a very important part of family life in the Hardwick household. Now, Adrienne is the proud parent to two Swedish Vallhunds called Moose and Pumpkin.