Constipation in Dogs

What it is: Constipation refers to a condition where a dog’s bowel movements are infrequent or absent altogether. This common problem can be brought on by a number of causes, including dehydration, lack of exercise, too much or too little fiber, blocked anal sacs, masses on the anus, enlarged prostrate, pelvic region trauma, medication side effects or an ingested foreign object. It can also stem from an underlying neurological disorder or orthopedic problem.


  • Hard, dry stools
  • Straining while trying to relieve self

Treatment:Treatment depends on the underlying cause, with options that include increased water consumption, fiber or exercise, prescription medication or laxative and a special diet prescribed by your vet. A trip to the vet is in order if your dog appears uncomfortable or in pain and has not relived himself in two days. Pet insurance plans generally cover the cost of prescription medications, while some plans even cover part of the cost of a prescription diet.

Return to the Dog Health Problems glossary.

  1. Reply
    Martyna P. 02/18/2016 at 11:46 am

    I think the best way to get rid of the constipation is to simply give your dog decent food and to provide it with healthy diet. Lots of dog eat very bad stuff for their stomachs: oily things, fried things, etc. I do realize those are dogs, but still, a human’s stomach and a dog’s stomach are two different things. Dogs should eat non-fried meat, they should also eat lots of good dog food and we must make sure the food has both meat and vegetables. We should make sure our dog drinks a lot of water too.

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