How Often Do Puppies Poop?
Owning a new puppy comes with many lessons to learn, and one question that you may not have thought of before buying your puppy is "How often do puppies poop?", but is one you will definitely be asking yourself after your new pet has moved into your house.
With toilet training at the top of the list for any new puppy owner, it can often be a frustrating learning curve for both the puppy and owner. You may have to be away from your puppy for hours at a time, but he just can't hold his bladder that long. Or your new puppy may seem like he is straining, but with barely any poop for his efforts.
What Should Puppy Poop Look Like?
This very much depends on the age of your puppy. If the puppy is very young and still drinking milk from the mother, then the feces will be yellow to green to brown with a toothpaste like consistency. You may not see much, however, as the mother dog will eat this when she is cleaning the pups. Young pups must be stimulated to urinate and defecate, and the mother dog does this with her tongue.
Puppies who are transitioning onto solid food, or who have recently had a change in their diet, such as a change of brand, will often have loose stools and diarrhea.
Healthy puppies will have fairly firm stools with a consistent chocolate brown color.
Puppy poop should never have blood in it, and this is serious cause for concern, as it could indicate anything from parvovirus to an intestinal blockage. Blood in the feces could be a veterinary emergency and you should take your pet to your nearest clinic for your own peace of mind.
How Often Do Puppies Poop?
As long as your puppy is weaned he should poop between 1 - 5 times a day, depending on how much he has eaten, and what he has eaten! As a general rule, for the first few months of a puppies life, they will need to defecate after eating. So puppies that are fed three times a day will need to be given the opportunity to defecate at least this many times in a suitable place to ensure the puppy is quickly housebroken and does not urinate or defecate in the house.
Newborn puppies will poop every few hours, and if you have an orphaned litter, you will need to stimulate them yourself. The best way is to use a wet cotton ball and gently wipe the genital area of the puppy. He will soon relieve himself onto the cotton ball and can then be cleaned up ready for the next feed in a few hours! You should do this after feeding, as opposed to before feeding, as it decreases the chance of the formula milk becoming contaminated with fecal matter.
Help! My Puppy Is Constipated/Has Diarrhea!
If your puppy is constipated and hasn't passed any stools in the past 24 hours, then they may have a bacterial infection, obstruction, or something more serious such as chronic disease or a tumor. You can give your puppy a 50/50 mix of his regular food along with mashed pumpkin which should get his bowels moving again. If you see no improvement, then ensure your next priority is getting to the vets!
If your puppy has diarrhea, they will often pass feces many more times a day than normal, and it is therefore imperative that you keep your puppy hydrated. If you find your puppy is not interested in food or water, then this can be an indication of a more serious pathological issue. You can hydrate your puppy by adding the juices of a cooked chicken to his water, but avoid stock cubes as the salt content is very high. If your puppy does not improve within 24 hours, you should take him to see your local vet.
The Bottom Line
As you and your dog start your journey as best friends, it may seem like there is an immense amount of information to research, absorb and recall in regards to keeping your new family member in the best of health.
Animals are very good at hiding when they are sick, so by knowing your dog well you will be able to catch sickness and disease early on, hopefully ensuring quick and efficient treatment at minimal distress for your dog. Unfortunately, this can mean regularly inspecting your dog's stools, and knowing what is normal for your pet.
Getting to know your dog's poop could literally save his life one day!
Has your puppy or adult dog been affected by any of the issues in this article? We would love to hear your stories in the comments!