Paying attention to your dog's waste can help detect ailments that your dog may be suffering from. This should help you and your pet's veterinarian get to the bottom of any problems before they get worse.
Check for the following in your dog's poop:
1. Color. The color of your pet's stool is one of the things that you should pay attention to. Normal colored poop should be similar to a milk-chocolate bar. Variations are signs of a problems.
Redness could be a sign of blood in your dog's poop. This could be due to lack of several nutrients that your veterinarian can help you discover. A tarry black color could indicate injuries in your dog's intestinal tract. Injuries could be due to any number of reasons, like infections. Tan colored brown or light colored brown could indicate a problem with your dog's liver. So remember that variations in the color of your dog's waste can help you detect problems with your dog's healthy early on.
2. Shape. The stool should be the shape of a log or a smooth sausage. Small balls of poop could indicate dehydration or an issue with your dog's kidney. So make sure you take a note of that and have your veterinarian verify that the problem isn't serious.
3. Texture. This one might be a little icky, but thankfully, you are using a bag and gloves to pick up your dog's poop. You want to check the texture of your dog's waste. Healthy texture is similar to dough. Your dog may have eaten something bad if his or her poop is too soft. Soft stool could also indicate serious problems, like an intestinal infection, parasites, or a food intolerance. Stool that is too hard could be a sign of constipation.
4. Foreign objects. Check for any strange objects in your dog's stool as you are feeling the texture. For example, any mucous-like substance could indicate inflammation or colitis. You should also be looking for undigested food particles and grass. Both of these are signs of gastrointestinal issues that should be brought to your veterinarian's attention. You shouldn't see any hair in your dog's stool either, which could indicate shedding, stress, or fleas. If you see worms in your dog's stool, contact your veterinarian, like those at Metzger Animal Hospital, as soon as possible.
As you can see, there is a lot you can learn from picking up your dog's poop.