Taking care of puppies is a whole lot of work. From the different vaccinations and vet visits to constantly checking what your little one has in its mouth, sometimes it seems like caring for a little pup is a job meant for a superhero with 4 hands, 4 legs, and 4 eyes. As if general care isn’t enough to worry about, puppies sometimes have health issues that get us frightened. One of these health issues is diarrhea.
A 6-week-old puppy that is constantly pooping is sure to get a pet parent worried. Although pups poop a lot, it is important to note changes in color, consistency, content, coating, and schedule to ensure that your pup’s poop is normal. These are the big C’s that will alert you when something abnormal is going on in your pet’s body so take note.
Loose, watery stools are often a sign of diarrhea. Along with loose stools, your pup may also show different symptoms like vomiting, lethargy, not eating, fever, etc. Most cases of puppy diarrhea aren’t severe, but you will need to help your little one through it. Read on if you’d like to learn how to help your 6-week-old puppy with diarrhea.
Why Might a Puppy Have Diarrhea at Six Weeks Old?
A range of factors, including parasitic, bacterial, and viral infections, stress, diet change, ingestion of toxins, and other foreign bodies, are major causes of diarrhea in pups. Let’s have a look at these factors more closely.
Parasites can find their way into your pup’s gastrointestinal tract either by ingestion or through his mother. The presence of parasites in the GIT of a six-week-old puppy often causes diarrhea and sometimes vomiting. This will require the immediate attention of your vet.
Bacteria are a vast class of microorganisms that are everywhere. Bacterial infectious agents such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella, and Clostridium can cause diarrhea in pups, and they can be contracted from contaminated materials, including food, water, and contact with infected animals or infected items. Other accompanying symptoms of bacterial conditions affecting the GIT include vomiting, fever, and loss of appetite.
Viral infections in dogs can be very serious and fatal in most cases. They are particularly common in pups either with partial or zero vaccinations. Some viral conditions in pups that could have diarrhea as a symptom include parvovirus and distemper virus.
If your pup is at a stage where it is trying to adjust to several things in his environment, he can suffer from anxiety. Diarrhea is a popular symptom seen in stressed animals. Some of the situations that can induce stress include weather changes, physical exertions, environmental noise, unusual routines, etc.
5. Diet Change
Diet change is one of the most complex things to manage in pups. They can have diarrhea if they are sensitive or intolerant to the newly introduced feed. Also, if your pup is fed with excess fatty food, diarrhea is often a consequence. Other times, the issue might be with the previous diet that he has been exposed to.
6. Ingestion of toxins
The ingestion of toxic substances can impact the gastrointestinal tract and cause diarrhea. Toxins can be taken in easily once there’s poor hygiene in the management of pups. Garbage, poisonous plants, contaminated feed, etc., are sources of toxins for your pup.
7. Underlying health conditions
There may be more than meets the eye if you notice that your 6-week-old has diarrhea. Stooling can be a pointer to move grave health conditions like intestinal cancer and inflammatory bowel disease. In such cases, your pet might be excreting clear liquid stools.
Is It Common for A 6-Week-Old Puppy to Have Diarrhea?
Although diarrhea can be frustrating to deal with, it is actually a common issue in pups. In a six-week-old puppy, the last thing you want your pet to experience is a condition like diarrhea that can result in unhappiness, weight loss, and even dehydration. It can be an awful experience, and no pet owner will want their pet to be there, especially at such a fragile growth stage. But as a pet parent, you must stay strong when your pet has such issues.
There’s a very slim chance your pup will not, at one point or the other, experience a mild occasion of diarrhea at the very least. This is because pups are still learning to understand their environment, and they mostly learn by trying new things. From sniffing at things out of curiosity to ingesting anything that appears appealing to them, they can often end up making contact with something that can irritate or harm their gastrointestinal tract. This, coupled with the fact that they have an immune system that is still relatively undeveloped, is a potent predisposing factor to ailments and symptoms, inclusive of diarrhea.
It is best to learn how to handle diarrhea in your pup because there is a big chance that he might experience it as an adult as well. Diarrhea can also be a very common issue and almost become a repeated occurrence if your pup is either not vaccinated at all or not fully vaccinated. So, to reduce incidences such as this, it is best to get your pup vaccinated as soon as possible.
What Should I Do if My 6-Week-Old Puppy Has Diarrhea?
As much as you shouldn’t panic when your pup has diarrhea, you also need to be well informed about what to do in this situation. You should contact your veterinarian, rehydrate your pup, feed him a bland diet and supply your pet with digestive supplements. In all, going the way of assumptions is quite risky when handling health matters, so it is best to get a diagnosis and get a go-ahead from your vet before indulging in different treatment methods.
A smart thing to do if your pup is having diarrhea is to contact your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will ask questions regarding the symptoms to which you should give clear answers. This will help your doctor professionally assess the condition, determine if your pup will require urgent medical attention, and give you instructions on the steps to take immediately. Your doctor might prescribe drugs or a diet change.
Sometimes you might need to wait a while before your vet arrives, or in a situation where for certain reasons, you cannot contact your vet, you need to be proactive. Give your pet water to prevent dehydration, and avoid feeding your pet as this might make the situation worse. Give a vet-approved digestion supplement that relieves issues like diarrhea.
Personally, I prefer administering natural digestion support supplements. The best digestive supplement is formulated with ingredients like essential fibers, prebiotics, probiotics, and fibers that can heal the digestive tract and provide diarrhea relief for your puppy. This helps to restore balance to the gut microbiome allowing digestion to run smoothly. This digestion supplement is one I would recommend.
If your 6-week-old puppy has diarrhea, there is no need to panic. Follow your vet’s instructions, rehydrate, feed a bland diet, and use digestion supplements. With you and your vet working hand in hand, your little one will be as good as new soon.