A healthy dog poop chart can be highly useful for pet parents. Whether you like it or not, you’ll have to deal with your fair share of poop in your pooch’s lifetime. However, you might want to slow down as you reach for the pooper scooper and take a second to learn more about your dog’s digestive health.
Your pup’s poops can reveal a great deal about their health, so it’s important to know what to look out for. When we were perfecting our natural pet food recipes, we spent a lot of time – a little too much if you ask me! – inspecting poop to gain an insight into how different ingredients affect digestion.
We’re sure most people agree – the less time you spend inspecting your dog’s poops, the better, right? That’s why we’ve created not one, but two healthy dog poop chart, complete with a dog poop colour chart and checklist for healthy poo's.
The perfect poop
Just like us humans, all dogs are different. Their toilet habits are different too. With that in mind, it’s important to get to know your pup right away and understand what is normal for them. That way, you will be able to recognise any changes in their stools.
While there can be slight differences depending on the pooch, our healthy dog poop chart covers a few things to look out for that are a sign of a healthy dog poop…
When picking up after your pooch, dog poop bag in hand, many of us don’t like to think too much about what’s inside the plastic bag we’re holding. But it’s important to consider the consistency of your dog’s poo as you pick it up, as this can be a sign of other issues.
Healthy dog poop should be compact, moist and hold its shape when picked up. If the poo is runny or watery, this could be a sign of intestinal upset. Perhaps due to your pup eating something. they shouldn't have. Similarly, if the poop feels too hard or dry, your pooch may be suffering from dehydration or constipation.
During the transition to a new food it is normal to see some stool variation, so don't panic. If things haven't settled down after 2 weeks then review. Often it's a case of feeding too much, so we've created this feeding calculator to give you a rough guideline of daily quantities. Don't forget this is just a guide, so so you may need to adjust according to your pooches needs.
It goes without saying that the size of your pooch’s poop depends on the size of the dog itself. There’s no way a Yorkshire Terrier will produce as much poo as a Great Dane! But generally speaking, your pooch should produce poops around the same size as the food portions they are eating.
The key thing to look out for when it comes to poop size is any noticeable changes. Larger than normal poos may mean that your pup’s food isn’t being digested as it should, and they are not getting the necessary nutrients out of it. On the other hand, smaller poops may be a sign of a loss of appetite due to an illness or a blockage in their digestive process.
The number of times your dog poops each day should be consistent – whether that’s once or four times per day. As long as it is the same every day, there’s no need to worry. Typically, most pups will go once or twice a day – although some may go four or more times! Our Smudge loves to go three times and spreads it out during her walkies. If we're lucky she occasionally plans it right next to the poo bin.
It’s important to pay attention to how many poops you’re scooping each day to understand how your pooch is doing. If they go from being a regular once-a-day-er to needing to go four or five times, they could be having some digestion problems and need to see the vet.
Typically, your pup’s poop should be shaped like a log and maintain its shape when picked up or moved. Look out for pebble-like or rounded poops as this could be a sign of dehydration or stiff joints.
If your pooch is a little older or suffers with joint issues, they may not be able to stay in the right position for long enough to produce a perfect poop. In this case, you may want to consult a vet and give them something to soften their stools to make things a little easier.
The main tell-tale sign that something is wrong when it comes to dog poop is its colour. You may not need to look too closely to spot a colour difference, so there’s less inspection necessary. Take a look at our infographic below for a healthy dog poop colour chart, so you know exactly what to look out for.
Anything other than light or dark brown – ideally a milk chocolate colour – may be cause for concern. Your dog food of choice may contain some food colourings too. If so we'd advise to change foods as this is unnecessary nonsense in pet food. To check if it does, look at the ingredients list as this may affect the colour of your pooch’s poop.
- Green – Could be a sign of a gall-bladder issue, or that your pup has been over-eating grass, which could indicate stress or intestine troubles.
- Orange / yellow – This could be a sign of an issue with the liver or pancreas, both of which will require veterinary attention.
- Red – Red streaks generally mean there is blood in your dog’s poop, which could be due to a cut near your pup’s anus so its worth having a quick look.
- Black / tarry – Could be a sign of internal bleeding in the stomach or small intestines, which requires urgent attention.
- Grey / greasy – May mean a pancreas or biliary issue, so get your pooch checked out by your vet.
- White spots – White, rice-like grains in your pup’s poop could be a sign of tapeworms, which will require treatment.
- White / chalky – This is usually due to an excess of calcium and other minerals and is typically observed in dogs with a raw diet.
Healthy dog poop chart
How to improve your dog's poops
The main thing to bear in mind when it comes to your dog's poop is that it's directly influenced by their diet. So start off by looking for a dog food that is designed to promote good digestion.
Our range of dog food (and cat food) is designed to be good for the gut, packed with gut-friendly ingredients like Slippery Elm and probiotics – the key to the perfect poop! Probiotics are living bacteria, that feed off prebiotics, and play a role in nearly all your pooches bodily functions. Playing a role in everything from their pretty poops, to feeling happy and doing zoomiess! Our whole range is also hypoallergenic, with grain free, single-source protein and limited ingredient options for the most sensitive tums.
If you do decide to transition onto a new food, make sure to do very gradually. A period of around 2 weeks should be enough for adults, but it could take even longer for pups. You can do this by gradually increasing the portion of your new food to their old food. During this transition it's normal to see some changes in stools or flatulence. However, these should subside as they settle on their new, tasty food!
Regular exercise, a stress-free environment and the right diet should all keep your pooch’s digestion running smoothly and save you from cleaning up even messier messes!