| Pet Care Advice By Veterinarians |

Do Dog Treats Cause Diarrhea?



Reviewed By: Dr. Joel Robertson

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As a responsible pet owner, it’s important to understand the factors that can affect your dog’s health, including their diet.

One common concern is whether dog treats can cause diarrhea.

In this article, we’ll explore the potential connection between dog treats and digestive issues, examine the ingredients that may trigger such problems, and provide recommendations for selecting appropriate treats to ensure your furry friend remains happy and healthy.

Key Takeaway

  • Certain ingredients found in natural treats such as wheat gluten, soy, and corn can cause diarrhea in dogs.
  • You can reduce the risk of puppy diarrhea by working closely with your veterinarian and avoiding major changes to your dog’s diet.
  • Too many treats for a dog is generally considered to be more than 10% of their daily calorie intake.

Do Dog Treats Cause Diarrhea?

Do Dog Treats Cause Diarrhea

Yes, Dog treats can cause diarrhea if they contain certain ingredients that are not suitable for your pup’s digestive system.

Wheat gluten, soy, and corn fillers are known to trigger diarrhea in dogs, as well as artificial ingredients and preservatives.

Additionally, the introduction of new treats or bones can also lead to an upset stomach and diarrhea.

If your pup has recently had an episode of diarrhea after eating treats, it is important to identify the specific cause.

Introducing one food or treat at a time can help you pinpoint the culprit more easily. Fortunately, there are some high-quality dog treats that are easy on the stomach and won’t lead to digestive issues.

Do Natural Treats Cause Diarrhea in Dogs?

Yes. Natural treats can cause diarrhea in dogs if they are sensitive or allergic to certain ingredients if the treats are given in excessive amounts, or if the dog has a sudden change in diet.

While natural treats are generally considered healthier and less likely to cause problems compared to those with artificial additives, it’s essential to monitor your dog’s reaction to any new treats.

To minimize the risk of digestive issues, introduce new treats gradually and in small quantities. Always ensure that treats make up only a small portion of your dog’s overall diet.

If you notice any signs of diarrhea or other adverse reactions after giving your dog a natural treat, consult with your veterinarian to determine the cause and make appropriate adjustments to their diet.

Can You Prevent Puppy Diarrhea in the First Place?

Preventing puppy diarrhea in the first place is possible by taking a proactive approach to their health and well-being.

Here are some steps you can take to minimize the risk of diarrhea in your puppy:

  1. Proper diet: Feed your puppy a high-quality, age-appropriate diet recommended by your veterinarian. Avoid sudden changes in their food, as this can cause digestive upset.
  2. A gradual introduction of new foods: When introducing new foods or treats, do so slowly and in small amounts to allow your puppy’s digestive system to adjust.
  3. Hydration: Ensure your puppy has access to fresh water at all times, as dehydration can contribute to diarrhea.
  4. Vaccination and parasite control: Follow your veterinarian’s recommendations for vaccinations and parasite prevention to protect your puppy from infections and parasites that can cause diarrhea.
  5. Stress management: Minimize stress for your puppy by providing a consistent routine, a comfortable environment, and proper socialization.
  6. Monitor for hazards: Keep an eye on your puppy to prevent them from ingesting harmful substances or objects that could cause gastrointestinal issues.
  7. Regular veterinary check-ups: Schedule regular visits to your veterinarian to monitor your puppy’s health and address any concerns promptly.

While these measures can help prevent diarrhea in many cases, it’s essential to remember that puppies may still experience digestive upset from time to time.

If your puppy develops diarrhea, consult with your veterinarian to determine the cause and receive appropriate treatment.

How Many Treats Is Too Many For a Dog?

Generally speaking, most experts recommend limiting treats to no more than 10% of your pup’s daily calorie intake.

This means that if your pup needs 500 calories per day, they should only be getting 50 calories from treats.

It’s also important to consider the type of treat you are giving them. Many store-bought treats are high in fat and sugar which can cause weight gain and other health issues if given in excess.

Instead, look for healthier options like homemade dog treats made with natural ingredients or low-calorie snacks like carrots or apples.

Finally, make sure you are monitoring your pup’s weight regularly and adjusting their diet accordingly. If you notice any sudden changes in appetite or weight gain/loss then it may be time to cut back on the number of treats they receive each day.

Can Bully Sticks Cause Diarrhea?

Yes. Bully sticks are high in protein and fat, which can be difficult for some dogs to digest. Eating too many bully sticks can lead to an upset stomach and diarrhea in some cases.

It’s important to give your dog bully sticks in moderation and watch out for any signs of digestive issues. If your dog experiences vomiting or diarrhea after eating bully sticks, it’s best to stop giving them and consult with your vet.

There are other alternatives to bully sticks that may be better suited for your pup’s digestion. For example, cooked vegetables like carrots or green beans make great treats that won’t cause any digestive issues.

Overall, it’s important to keep an eye on how many bully sticks you’re giving your pup and watch out for any signs of digestive distress. If you notice anything unusual, it’s best to consult with your vet right away!

Can Milk Bones Cause Diarrhea In Dogs?

Yes. It is possible that Milk Bones can cause diarrhea in dogs, though this is not always the case. In some cases, it may be an allergic reaction or a coincidence due to illness.

It is important to keep an eye on your dog’s health if they are eating Milk Bones, as gastrointestinal upset such as diarrhea and vomiting may occur within 24 hours of consumption.

If your dog experiences any of these symptoms, it is best to consult with your veterinarian to determine the cause and find the best course of action.

In addition, if your dog has allergies to beef, wheat, or milk, it is best to avoid feeding them Milk Bones as they may experience rashes, diarrhea, nausea, and drooling.

It is also important to note that bones with marrow can cause diarrhea in dogs and other conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome.

Can You Feed Too Many Treats To Your Dog?

Yes, it is possible to feed too many treats to your dog. While treats are a great way to reward good behavior and show your pup some love, overfeeding can lead to serious health issues such as obesity, diabetes, or pancreatitis.

To ensure that you’re not giving your pet too many treats, keep track of the calories they’re consuming with each snack and make sure they don’t exceed 10-20% of their daily caloric intake.

Treats should also be given in moderation – no more than one treat per day! If you want to give your pup extra love without the extra calories, try offering them verbal praise or something like a fun game or toy instead.

Treatment of Dog Diarrhea

Treatment of dog diarrhea depends on the underlying cause and severity of the condition. In many cases, mild diarrhea can be managed at home with simple remedies and care.

However, it’s crucial to consult your veterinarian if diarrhea persists, worsens, or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms. Here are some general guidelines for treating dog diarrhea:

  1. Fasting: Temporarily withhold food for 12-24 hours (but not water) to give your dog’s digestive system a chance to rest and recover. However, do not fast young puppies, small dogs, or dogs with medical conditions without consulting a veterinarian.
  2. Bland diet: After fasting, gradually reintroduce food by offering a bland diet, such as boiled white rice and plain boiled chicken (without skin or bones). Feed small, frequent meals for a few days before slowly transitioning back to their regular diet.
  3. Hydration: Encourage your dog to drink water to prevent dehydration. You can offer unflavored Pedialyte or low-sodium broth to help replenish electrolytes if needed.
  4. Probiotics: Adding a canine-specific probiotic supplement to your dog’s diet may help restore the balance of good bacteria in their gut and improve digestion.
  5. Over-the-counter medications: In some cases, over-the-counter medications like Imodium (loperamide) can help alleviate diarrhea symptoms. However, always consult with your veterinarian before administering any medication to your dog, as some breeds may have adverse reactions to certain drugs.
  6. Veterinary care: If your dog’s diarrhea is severe, persistent, or accompanied by additional symptoms (such as vomiting, lethargy, or blood in the stool), seek veterinary care immediately. Your veterinarian will diagnose the underlying cause and provide appropriate treatment, which may include prescription medications, fluid therapy, or other interventions depending on the situation.


Q: Are many dog treats a common cause of diarrhea?

A: Yes, many dog treats can cause diarrhea in dogs. This is because some treats contain fillers and additives that can be difficult for a dog’s digestive system to break down.

Q: What are the causes of diarrhea in dogs?

A: Some common causes of diarrhea in dogs include dietary changes, consuming something they shouldn’t have, bacterial or viral infections, stress, and underlying medical conditions.

Q: Can treats cause diarrhea in dogs?

A: Yes, treats can cause diarrhea in dogs, especially if they are given in excess or if the dog has a sensitive stomach. It’s important to keep in mind the ingredients in the treat and how it may affect your dog’s digestive system.

Q: What is the best type of dog treats?

A: The best dog treats are ones that are made with high-quality ingredients and are free from fillers and additives. Freeze-dried treats are a good option as they often contain only one ingredient and retain many of the nutrients found in the original food.

Q: What should I do if my dog has diarrhea after eating a commercial dog treat?

A: If your dog has diarrhea after consuming a commercial dog treat, you should stop giving them that treat and switch to a different brand or type of treat. If the diarrhea persists, it’s important to speak with your veterinarian.

Q: Are dog training treats safe to give?

A: Yes, dog training treats are safe to give, as long as they are given in moderation and are made with high-quality ingredients. It’s also important to keep in mind the size and age of your dog when giving treats during training sessions.

Q: What can I give my dog if they have chronic diarrhea?

A: If your dog is suffering from chronic diarrhea, you should speak with your veterinarian to determine the underlying cause and treatment. In some cases, a change in diet or medication may be necessary.

Q: Is it okay to give new treats to my dog?

A: Yes, it’s okay to give new treats to your dog, but you should introduce them gradually and keep an eye on their stool to see if they have any adverse reactions. It’s also important to choose treats made with high-quality ingredients and free from fillers and additives.

Q: Can commercial dog treats cause digestive issues like diarrhea?

A: Yes, some commercial dog treats can cause digestive issues like diarrhea if they contain fillers, additives, or preservatives that are difficult for a dog’s digestive system to break down. It’s important to choose high-quality treats made with whole ingredients to reduce the risk of digestive problems.

Q: How can I keep my dog’s digestive system healthy?

A: To keep your dog’s digestive system healthy, make sure to give them high-quality dog food, free from fillers and additives, and limit their intake of treats. It’s also important to provide plenty of fresh water and exercise regularly.

In Conclusion

While dog treats can potentially cause diarrhea, it largely depends on the ingredients and the individual dog’s sensitivities.

By carefully choosing high-quality treats with natural ingredients and avoiding those with artificial additives or known allergens, you can minimize the risk of digestive issues.

Always monitor your dog’s reaction to new treats and consult with your veterinarian if you notice any adverse effects.

Please take the time and leave a comment below if this article helped you, or you have any additional questions.

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