What is cause of bloody stool or diarrhea in dogs?

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Answered by: Leona, An Expert in the Diseases and Problems Category
There are several reasons for dogs to have bloody stool or diarrhea. Dogs with bloody stool or diarrhea may have eaten a foreign object or food that upset the intestines and cause soft stool or diarrhea. Puppies are generally known for picking up and eating almost anything that lands in their way. Foods such as chocolate and bones can cause severe upset stomach leading to diarrhea. Certain medications and household objects can cause upset stomach in dogs as well.

Regarding medical reasons, worms are a major reason for bloody diarrhea. There are different species of worms, but the two common worms to cause bloody stool are hookworms and roundworms. Hookworms are worms that attach themselves to the intestine lining and feeds off the blood, which can cause anemia and bloody diarrhea. Roundworms are worms that feed from the food your pets ingest, with a distinctive body form of a string. Both species of worms are contracted by ingestion of contaminated feces or soil.

Coccidia is another parasite that can cause (in severe cases) bloody diarrhea. Giardia is also another form of parasite that lives in the intestines of animals. Giardia is found in contaminated food, soil, and water. In pets, giardia may cause upset stomach, gas, nausea, and diarrhea. Parasites can be treated with medication from your local veterinarian.

Treatment is usually inexpensive and not very time-consuming. Treatment usually includes deworming or a certain antibiotic. Veterinarians may usually suggest vaccinations on your visit if not yet done so. In extreme cases, the most common virus for dogs that can cause bloody diarrhea is the canine parvovirus. Parvo (for short) is a virus that attacks the intestinal tract. Symptoms include bloody diarrhea, nausea and vomiting (sometimes also bloody), dehydration, pet being lethargic, and also having a fever.

Parvo is a very serious virus that requires hospitalization, medication, fluids, and time. Parvo is contracted though contaminated feces and soil. By parvo being a virus it is common for dogs to contract parvo with less or no antibodies to fight it off; which include puppies and dogs without vaccinations. Treatment for dogs with the canine parvovirus require days of hospitalization, medication and supervision. It is expensive, require time and even while treated if the pet cannot develop enough strength and antibodies, it can still result to death. Prevention of the virus requires regular vaccinations for appropriate age pets, and pets that are too young should stay indoors until puppy vaccines are complete.

Taking your pet to your local veterinarian regularly for checkups, vaccinations, dental work, and any other recommendations your vet may have, will prevent your pet from getting parasites and worms. Prevention visits are not very expensive and helps reduce time for your vet visits. Prevention of viruses or dieases are less expensive than treatment, so to keep a healthy and happy pet, regular veterinarian visits will help save money for your pet and keep your pet as healthy and happy as possible.

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