There are two simple reasons dogs poop often when going on walks. The first is because they’re marking territory. We often think of dogs urinating to mark territory, but some dogs also mark with poop. The other reason is that the increase in activity can activate bowel movements.
Today we are talking about your dog’s pooping habits. Are they normal? What does normal even look like for a dog? Do you find yourself running out of poop bags on walks because your dog goes one too many times? Or maybe you hear your friends complain about their dog not pooping on their walks, and you can’t help but wonder why your dog is so different from other dogs.
Well – you’re not alone. And your dog isn’t abnormal, either. We are going to take a different kind of walk today and walk you through why your dog may be pooping more frequently on walks. We will also dive into some changes you can make to help regulate your dog’s bathroom habits.
How Many Times Per Day Should Dogs Poop?
Most healthy dogs will poop anywhere between 1-5 times per day. Yes, that’s a big range! Healthy dogs are usually on the higher end of this range.
Your dog’s frequency of pooping depends on how often you feed it. If you give your furry friend three small meals a day, you can expect them to poop more frequently than if they were fed just one meal per day.
Your dog’s bathroom breaks are also affected by their age and overall health status. Older dogs, as well as unhealthy dogs, tend to go to the bathroom less.
The most important thing to keep in mind when thinking about your dog’s bathroom breaks is consistency. And yes, that means the consistency of the poop itself as well as the consistent frequency of your dog going number two.
Should Pooping More Than Normal Cause Concern?
It may seem concerning that your dog seems to be pooping more frequently than normal, but there is no reason to be concerned as long as the consistency of the poop looks normal and your dog doesn’t seem sick.
What could be concerning is if your dog is going to the bathroom more frequently and passing loose stools. This is a telltale sign of an upset stomach and can be very uncomfortable for your furry friend.
Another concerning sign is if your dog is not pooping daily. A lack of bathroom breaks can be a sign of constipation and can lead to more severe problems if it goes on for too long. However, if you are reading this article, you probably aren’t worried about constipation at the moment.
But Why Does My Dog Poop So Much on Walks?
It makes sense that your dog poops more frequently on walks. The increase in activity and movement can quickly get the bowels moving. If your dog is just sitting on the couch or remaining sedentary, it’s unlikely that his or her bowel will be active.
This increase in pooping on walks is completely normal and healthy. Walking your dog often leads to a happy and robust pup at your side, especially if it includes a bathroom break or two.
Keep an Eye on Your Dog’s Poop
If you’re concerned that something might be wrong with your dog, keeping an eye on your dog’s poop is essential when it comes to understanding the overall health of your pup.
If color or consistency drastically changes, it’s even more important to track their poop for the next couple days. This will help you understand if they have a stomach bug, food intolerance, or any other issue. Your dog’s pooping habits are intel into what is going on with them.
When you take your dog to the vet, giving them detail about the consistency, color, and frequency will help your vet diagnose what could be wrong.
What if My Dog Always Has Diarrhea on Walks?
Overall, diet and water intake play a large role in your dog’s bathroom habits. If you change your dog’s food, you will see a change in their poop until their body gets used to the new diet.
Another potential cause of diarrhea is an increase in treats or human food. Just like humans, your dog can get an upset stomach from eating food that’s not great for them. Dog’s stomachs are especially sensitive to human food if it’s not introduced slowly.
The amount of water your pup drinks is just as important as the quality and quantity of food they eat. Dehydration can change poop color, loosen stools, and cause an upset stomach.
So, the first thing to ask if your dog is pooping more frequently or having loose stools, is if anything drastic has changed around them. Usually, the changes will relate to what your dog is consuming, such as food and water, but it can also be new stressors or allergens.
Stress May Cause Your Dog to Poop More on Walks
It’s common for dogs (and humans) to poop more frequently when stressed. Although your dog may enjoy going on walks, they can still be stressful. Quite literally, your dog’s stomach can be in knots from stress.
Stress can also lead your dog to under or overeat, which subsequently upsets their stomach, as we mentioned above. Try to identify any possible situations that might cause your dog stress when going on walks.
Has Your Dog’s Mood Changed?
Be sure to pay attention to how your dog is acting on these walks. Does the bowel movement seem uncomfortable? What about their energy level? If mood change accompanies an uptick in pooping, there could be a bigger problem at hand.
What if This Odd Habit Just Started?
If pooping a lot on walks is a new thing, something may have changed to lead to this new habit.
Is there a lake or river near you that your dog drank from? Bacteria from natural water can change the balance in your dog’s stomach and cause your dog to poop more frequently.
Dogs can also suffer from illnesses such as irritable bowel syndrome, which is a disorder that could lead to these added bathroom breaks.
A syndrome or underlying condition would be most easily identified if it’s accompanied by a change in your dog’s temperament and any changes to the color and consistency of the stool.
Finally, is your dog on any new medications? This is another cause that may affect the frequency of bathroom breaks. .
If your dog has a consistent bathroom schedule on his/her walks – even if it’s seemingly too frequent – you should feel confident that they are healthy and happy.
As dog owners, we are always remaining vigilant for any changes in our dog’s behavior, and this includes their bathroom breaks. Whenever your dog’s bathroom habits change, it’s worth discussing with a vet. In addition to making any additional changes for your dog’s stomach, a vet will assure you that you don’t have anything to worry about.
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