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Constipation in Dogs

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Dog Constipation Overview

Dogs get constipated just like humans. Constipation is defined as difficult, infrequent or absent bowel movements. Along with dog diarrhea, constipation is one of the most common health issues with any dog's digestive system.


Predictably, dog constipation includes dry, hard stools and straining when trying to poop.


Underlying Causes

There are a number of reasons your dog may be constipated. Here is a list of the most common underlying causes.

  • Dehydration from illness
  • Too much or too little fiber in diet
  • Lack of exercise
  • Blocked anal sacs
  • Enlarged prostate gland
  • Matted hair around the anus
  • Ingested foreign body
  • Masses or tumors on the anus
  • Side effect of medication
  • Trauma to the pelvic region
  • Orthopedic problems
  • Neurologic disorders

When to See a Vet

If your dog has not pooped in over two days or shows signs of pain and discomfort you should see your veterinarian immediately.


Depending on the underlying cause there are several treatment options.

  • Drink more water
  • Overt-the-counter stool softener or laxative
  • Prescription medications
  • Adding fiber to your dog’s diet
  • Veterinarian-prescribed diet
  • Increase in exercise
  • Enema administered by a veterinary professional


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