Can I Give My Dog an Enema?

Can I give my dog an enema?There could be several reasons for giving your pet dog an enema. A vet’s assistant would usually perform this bowel procedure. You can, however, do it yourself but please learn as much as possible before undertaking such an important task.

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A routine enema can effectively clean out a constipated canine’s colon but it’s also used for re-hydration. Veterinary professionals also give dogs enemas to prepare them for certain surgeries or if there’s a bowel obstruction.

Keep in mind that, in most cases, your dog will be able to recover from a bout of constipation on their own. Taking it upon yourself to administer an enema, without a diagnosis, is sometimes the wrong way to go about helping.

Can I Give My Dog an Enema? Answer: Yes, when appropriate

If you do perform this be sure to use Dioctyl Sodium Sulfosuccinate in Glycerine specially made for pets.

This will have the effect of stimulating your dog’s intestinal mucosa which will soften hard fecal matter. But giving an enema isn’t the easiest thing in the world to do, and you could do more harm than good if an enema isn’t actually necessary. Complicating matters is the fact that your dog may not exactly be calm when you need them so be. So administering an enema to your dog can be quite the challenge!

Chronic bowel regularity should be addressed by consulting with your dog’s local vet.

Common Canine Constipation

Constipation is a common problem in dogs, and so is the opposite, diarrhea. It’s a dog’s nature to be eating things they shouldn’t be, and most of the things that go into them other than dog food will create some sort of digestive trauma.

Most of the time it won’t last long, and doesn’t give your dog the hours of agony it can give a human. But if you notice that they’ve been having repeat problems to the point of it becoming a chronic condition, it’s probably best to have them looked at by a vet instead of deciding for yourself that an enema is the best form of treatment.

Alternatives to Enema

There are ways to treat your dog for constipation, and other digestive issues, without having to resort to giving an enema. Many owners feed their dogs a can of mashed pumpkin which usually works wonders. Cooked rice is also recommend. You want to add bulk and water to your dog’s stools, making them easier to pass. Utilizing these two foods may be ways to avoid the need for an enema, although only a vet can say for sure what your pet needs for their particular situation.

Doggie Digestive System

A dog has a relatively simple digestive system so most of the time you can let the problem pass unless it’s something that is a bigger problem than just constipation. Most of the time their problems are short lived, so by the time you are reacting to the problem it’s already too late to do anything for them.

By the time you give them something for the constipation, or give them an enema, they will have already been able to take care of the problem on their own, naturally.

Dog Food & Other Tips

You can use your dog’s daily diet as a way to help them with digestive issues like constipation. Upgrading them to a better brand of dog food should clear up most digestive hiccups which goes for diarrhea as well. Feeding your best buddy around the same time every day will ensure that their digestive juices are ready to break down the food properly. Finally, keeping their water dish full prevents dehydration and will make their stools softer.

Conclusion on Enemas

If your dog has something obstructing their bowels, like if they swallowed something, an enema may or may not work to help them pass it. It’s a good idea to consult with your vet if you think your dog might need an enema.

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Dr. Stephanie Flansburg Cruz, a practicing vet, has reviewed and endorsed this article. She has 3 dogs of her own and cares about the welfare of all animals.


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