Published on: 03/04/2022, updated on: 03/04/2022

What Does it Mean When a Dog Poops Blood?

Pet owners get so used to picking up their dog’s poop, they often barely look at it. However, when you do look and find blood present in the poop, it can be quite scary. What does it mean when your dog poops blood?

There can be many reasons to find blood in your dog’s poop. Bloody diarrhea is a concern and can be life-threatening in some cases. It is crucial to identify the type of bloody diarrhea your pooch is producing and whether it is serious. So, stay calm and observe the kind of bloody poop, your dog is releasing.

puppy

Type of Bloody Stool & Causes

There are a couple of types of Bloody Stools - Hemotochezia and Melena. Each has different causes.

Hematochezia

This is when the dog poops bright red and fresh blood. This type of poop can be hard, rocky, watery, soft, etc. Common causes for Hematochezia are:

  • Ingesting anything indigestible or something that causes allergies.
  • Any lower digestive tract or colon issues.
  • Bowel Inflammation or disease.
  • Lower Bowel Cancer.
  • Infections which are caused by bacteria, viruses, or parasites.
  • Constipation (might be due to something serious like hernia, kidney disease, prostate disease, etc.).
  • Anal sac abscess.
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Intestinal ulcers

Melena

Melena poop is a tar-like and blackish bloody poop (digested blood) that your dog may excrete when they are ill. The most harmless cause of melena poop can be ingestion of blood by licking wounds. However, if there are no known outside injuries then the source of blood can be internal injuries.

The blood is not fresh and has been digested, it is usually caused by issues of the upper digestive tract or small intestine. Melena poop is often a sign of something serious, so it is better to take your pup to the vet when you see melena poop. Some common causes of melena poop are:

  • Issues with the esophagus or stomach.
  • Tumors.
  • Ulcers.
  • Blood-clotting disorder.
  • Parasites.
  • Liver cancer.
  • Post-surgery complications.
  • Consuming blood by licking injuries.
  • Polyps.

When is Bloody Diarrhea an Emergency?

If your dog has bloody diarrhea only once and looks completely fine after that, it might not be a serious issue. However, it is better to take them to the vet. Keep an eye on your dog to ensure that it only happened once. Any food that hardens your dog’s poop and eases their tummy should help them fight it off. However, if your dog gets it more than twice or has recurring bouts of bloody diarrhea, it should be considered an emergency.

If your dog has bloody diarrhea and shows signs of difficulty while passing stool, there may be a blockage due to eating something wrong. This is an emergency and should be treated immediately as it can be time-sensitive. Such blockages or obstructions can cut off blood supply to vital tissue or lead to severe internal injury.

When Should You Take Your Dog with Bloody Diarrhea to the Vet?

Any of the instances mentioned above will require you to take your dog to the vet. If your dog is continually pooping blood, it can mean that whatever condition is causing bloody diarrhea has worsened. As mentioned before, ingestion of a foreign object can be extremely dangerous and will require immediate attention from the vet.

The key is to watch out for any other symptoms like signs of dehydration, weakness, or pain. Other issues like infections and diseases like parvovirus can be life-threatening. If your dog is old, young, or has any other health problems, make sure to take your dog to the vet after bloody diarrhea.

Can Medication Cause Bloody Poop in Dogs?

Prescribed medication or over-the-counter medication can also cause bloody poop in dogs. You should check your dog's feces if he or she is on any medicine.

If you see any blood, it can be that the medication is not suiting your dog. The blood might be due to inflammation and bleeding inside your dog’s stomach and intestines, so it is important to find out whether your dog is having bloody diarrhea.

What To Do When Your Dog is Pooping And Vomiting Blood?

Your sick dog might excrete and vomit blood at the same time. A handful of issues can trigger this. It can happen when your dog has ingested a foreign object, which is obstructing its intestines. If the food manages to block blood flow in certain areas, sections of the intestine might die. This can cause terminal health problems and often require surgery to heal.

Another common issue that can make your dog vomit and poop blood is Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis. This is commonly caused by eating something new and unsuitable. It can also be caused by eating large amounts of unhealthy human food or even fatty dog treats.

Parvovirus is contagious and if your dog did not receive shots for it, they can easily catch it. The symptoms will show up within 48 hours of contact, so make sure that your dog gets to the vet as soon as you see continuous bloody diarrhea and vomit. Other parasites can also cause blood in poop and vomit, so persistent cases need vet supervision.

What is the Treatment for Bloody Poop?

Each type of bloody diarrhea has its medication. For example, the internal obstruction will require surgery. For internal parasites, deworming on schedule is the way to go. Bacterial infections might require antibiotics. If they are licking a wound, make sure you treat and cover the wound. 

Some medication might be required to soothe the pain and discomfort of bloody pop. You must keep them hydrated as continuous diarrhea with blood might cause severe dehydration. In severe cases of dehydration, they might need intravenous fluids. Your dog will also need lots of rest, love, and care.

Some Home Remedies for Bloody Diarrhea

Feed your dog bland and tummy-friendly meals that are easy to digest. The most common home remedy is boiled white rice in plain broth, as it is easy to consume. You can also give them some pumpkin puree or add it to the rice. If they can’t handle large meals, feed them in small quantities frequently. Give them lots of fluids, as fluid therapy is needed to heal them and keep them strong.

Final Thoughts

Bloody diarrhea is a cause of concern and should be taken seriously. It is crucial to figure out the reason behind bloody poop so that you can help your dog heal. Take your dog to the vet immediately if he’s having persistent bloody diarrhea.

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