Dog Pooping in The House All of a Sudden?
By Pierre Mouchette | Bits-n-Pieces
It can be frustrating to find that your dog left you a “present” on the floor when you were out of the house. While you might be tempted to discipline or yell at your dog, that will not help prevent future accidents. If your dog is repeatedly pooping in the house, you will need to identify the cause before being able to control the behavior effectively.
Reasons why your dog may be pooping in the house
There are many potential reasons why your dog may be pooping in the house:
Intestinal parasites - They can make it difficult for dogs to control their bowels, leading to accidents in the home. For example, Giardia, a parasitic infection, can cause acute or sudden diarrhea. It may also cause dogs to experience abdominal discomfort and watery poops, leading to them having an accident before they can make it outside.
Stress - If your dog gets stressed when you leave the house, they may have accidents while you are gone. Separation anxiety can cause dogs to panic, cry, run, and bark while their owners are away. And some dogs work themselves up so much that they have accidents in the house. Highly stressed dogs may also destroy their owners’ belongings.
Left in the house too long - Dogs may have accidents in the house when they have been inside too long and need to poop. While your dog’s poop schedule depends on the type of food and how much of it they are eating, most dogs need to poop one to two times a day. A dog that is eating a diet that is high in fiber may need to poop three times a day.
Food allergies - Food allergies can cause many symptoms in dogs, including gas and diarrhea. If dogs have a sudden episode of diarrhea, they may not be able to get outside in time and might have an accident in the house.
Age-related issues - As dogs get older, they may experience age-related issues that lead to accidents in the house. Older dogs can experience decreased muscle strength, which leads to incontinence. Some are also affected by nerve damage in their spinal cord that weakens muscles and makes it difficult to control bowel movements.
An older dog repeatedly pooping or peeing in the house can also be a sign of senior dog dementia. As dogs age, they may become more easily confused, have difficulty hearing, and go on midnight walks through the home. That general confusion can cause dogs with dementia to poop and pee in the house, too.
Dietary changes - Dogs can get sick when their food is changed quickly, potentially leading to accidents in the house. To prevent an upset stomach when putting your dog on a new diet, it is best to slowly mix a bit of the fresh food into their old food, slowly transitioning them over seven days (or longer).
Incontinence - Fecal incontinence can cause dogs to lose control of their bowels, leading to repeated accidents in the house. While any dog can develop this condition, it is more common in older dogs.
Dogs experiencing fecal incontinence may leak small amounts of poop and not be aware of it. In other cases, they are aware but are losing the ability to control their urge to poop. They might also poop in strange places in the house or release amounts when they bark or get excited.
Should I discipline my dog for pooping in the house?
It is essential not to discipline a dog who poops in the house. Disciplining your dog’s inappropriate defecation in your house should always be avoided. Punishing your dog may even teach them to be afraid of you. Punishment will not resolve the behavior; there is no value in yelling at your dog or rubbing their nose in it. The most important step is determining the underlying cause of the issue and solving the problem.
How do I get my dog to poop outside again?
Identifying the reason why your dog is pooping inside is the first step in getting your dog to poop outside again. Schedule a vet appointment for your dog to identify the cause. Based on your dog’s history and physical examination, your veterinarian will determine the next steps in helping your dog return to going outside.
In addition, you can try the following:
When to see the vet because your dog is pooping in the house
It is usual for dogs to have accidents occasionally, especially when they are puppies and still being house-trained. But if your dog starts to poop in the house repeatedly, it is time for a trip to the vet. Contact your veterinarian as soon as you notice a persistent problem. This way, your vet can note your dog’s behavior change and make the appropriate recommendations.
If you notice that your dog has other symptoms, like diarrhea or a change in appetite, in addition to pooping in the house, then it’s time to call the vet. Bring a stool sample to the appointment so your vet can rule out intestinal parasites. During the appointment, your vet might recommend:
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