If your doggie has the urge to go potty, he'll definitely let you know about it, whether he barks loudly by your door, paws at it or even has an unfortunate accident on your favorite plush rug -- eek. Too-frequent bathroom calls usually indicate a health issue in doggies.
If your pet is overwhelmed by the constant urge to go No. 2 and can't seem to control it, fecal incontinence may be at fault. In situations of decreased bowel control, your doggie may be dealing with a medical or cognitive condition such as inflammatory bowel disease, colitis, anal sac disease, inflammatory bowel syndrome, dementia or perhaps even gastrointestinal parasites. Take your cutie to a veterinarian to figure out the root cause for his unusually frequent calls of nature.
Urinary incontinence may also be contributing to your pooch's practically nonstop bathroom calls. If your poor pet's bladder seems not to be working as well as before, it could be related to anything from bladder stones and hormonal issues to urinary tract infections and congenital problems. Apart from unusually frequent bathroom urges, you may notice your pet leaking small amounts of urine. Pay attention to your pet's preferred sleeping and relaxing spots. If you notice damp patches, investigate the idea of urinary incontinence further with the veterinarian.
If your dog is going No. 1 a lot more than usual, but does seem to be able to hold it in, a variety of different health conditions may be the culprit. Some common causes for excessive urination are diabetes, an overactive thyroid, Cushing's syndrome and even toxicity to certain plants -- think the "Dog Daisy" plant, for example. Never ignore changes in your pet's potty patterns. If your pooch out of nowhere seems to urinate a lot more than before, the veterinarian's office is calling for you.
Abnormal No. 2 habits are also usually indicative of an underlying medical issue, especially if the consistency of the stools is rather watery and loose. Even if your pet has full control of his bowels, pay attention to any increased urges to eliminate. Frequent passing of stools can be a symptom of an array of health issues in canines, including the aforementioned inflammatory bowel disease, dietary sensitivities, giardia parasites, cancer and even viral infection. When it comes to determining your fluffball's issue, the veterinarian is your greatest resource, so schedule that appointment immediately.
By Naomi Millburn
The Merck Veterinary Manual: Urinary Incontinence
ASPCA: Medical Causes of House Soiling in Dogs
ASPCA: Urinary Incontinence
AKC Canine Health Foundation: Inflammatory Bowel Disease
ASPCA: Dog Daisy
About the Author
Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.