It’s not really a question most people would consider before getting a dog, but we would hazard a guess that most dog owners at some point have questioned whether their dog is doing its business more or less times than they should be.
Dog's stool can be gross, but it can also be really useful. Keeping an eye on your dog's poop frequency and the consistency of your dog's poo can offer invaluable insights and advanced clues about any possible health concerns they may have.
For example, if they suddenly starts pooping more than usual, it could be a sign that there is not getting enough fibre in your dog's diet. On the other hand, if they start pooping less often, or they need to circle more before doing their business, it could be a sign of dehydration. And if their poop is diarrhoea-like or your dog pooing blood, it's time to call the vet ASAP.
How often should dogs poop?
The regularity with which a dog poops can vary based on a lot of factors. Younger dogs poop more and older dogs less. Some dogs just poop more than others! Below is a rough guide, but it is worth bearing in mind that dog pooping frequency rarely gives the full picture alone, consistency needs to be factored in also.
You may be thinking, "should dogs poop everyday?" and the answer is typically yes. Most adult dogs poop 1 to 3 times per day on average. If your adult dogs poop more than this but has always been a frequent pooper, it’s unlikely to be a cause for concern. If your dog’s movements suddenly become much more frequent or there is excessive pooping, consult your vet immediately.
Senior dogs tend to poop less frequently than younger adult dogs, once a day is a good yardstick to aim for but if it’s slightly less than that it shouldn’t be a problem. Knowing your dog and its regular habits is key to spotting any potential health issues.
What is a healthy poop?
A healthy dog poop doesn’t look too dissimilar to an adult human poo. As the stool chart above shows, a firm but not overly hard poop which holds its shape and leaves behind no residue when picked up is the ideal dog poop.
If your dog is regularly experiencing some level of diarrhoea it is likely to be a dietary change that is required. If you are struggling to understand why your dog is regularly experiencing diarrhoea, speak with your vet who may be able to suggest some dietary changes to help. In the meantime you can:
- Make sure they're drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated
- Add some plain, unsweetened yoghurt to their food - the probiotics can help soothe an upset stomach
- Avoid anything high in fat or fibre, as both can aggravate diarrhoea
- Stick to small meals throughout the day rather than one large one
By following these simple tips, you can help your dog feel better and get their diarrhoea under control.
How often will my puppy poop?
Dog poop is a fact of life for any pet owner, but it can be especially challenging with puppies. Not only do puppies poop more often than adult dogs - from 3 up to 6 or 7 times per day - but they're also small and don't have a fully developed dog's digestive system. This tends to mean that food isn't digested as thoroughly as the food an adult dog eats, and the processing happens very quickly. The regularity with which your puppy dog poos is an important consideration when decided how long you can leave your puppy alone when required.
The good news is that the pup's poop frequency drops steadily until they reach one year of age, then they'll settle into an adult dog's poop schedule. In the meantime, just be prepared for a bit more clean up than usual.
Almost all puppies are born with intestinal parasites which can easily cause digestive problems without a course of deworming while they are young. If your puppy begins to poop more frequently or the consistency and colour change dramatically, contact your vet immediately.
What does a healthy puppy poop look like?
Poop can tell you a lot about your dog's health. A healthy puppy's stool should be firm, but not hard (hard, dry dog poop can be a sign of dehydration), and a medium chocolate brown in colour. A small amount of mucus is normal, but if you see any bright red blood, it's best to contact your vet just to be safe. If your puppy is having trouble pooping, or if their poop is very runny or hard, it could be a sign of an underlying health issue.
So, if you're ever unsure about what's normal for your pup, always err on the side of caution and contact your vet. They'll be able to help you figure out what's going on and get your pup back on the path to good health.
who picks up guide dog poop/where do guide dogs poop?