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HomeDear VetBabbleWhat Causes Mucusy, Bloody Diarrhea in Dogs and Should I Be Concerned?

What Causes Mucusy, Bloody Diarrhea in Dogs and Should I Be Concerned?


Dear VetBabble,

I’ve noticed that my dogs have been experiencing diarrhea which seems to be mucusy and might even have some blood in it. What could be the cause of this, and is it something I should be concerned about?


It’s concerning to see your beloved pet experiencing diarrhea, especially when it appears to be mucusy or bloody. There are a few potential causes for these symptoms, and it’s essential to address them quickly to ensure your dog returns to good health. I’ll provide some information on the possible causes of the diarrhea, as well as when you might need to worry and seek veterinary care.

Possible Causes of Mucusy or Bloody Diarrhea

When your dog has diarrhea with these characteristics, it can sometimes indicate the presence of intestinal parasites. One such example is coccidia, a parasite that can cause bloody diarrhea in dogs and puppies. You can learn more about coccidia in dogs and puppies, along with the appropriate treatment options, in our dedicated article on the subject.

Another potential cause is inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which occurs when the lining of your dog’s intestines becomes inflamed, leading to the production of excess mucus. This can result in diarrhea that is accompanied by mucus and, in some cases, blood. To determine whether this might be the cause, you should consult with your veterinarian, who can provide further advice and recommendations.

Mange can also occasionally cause diarrhea in dogs, particularly if the skin irritation caused by mange mites is severe. A veterinarian can help determine whether your dog has mange and recommend the appropriate course of action.

When to Worry About Your Dog’s Diarrhea

Diarrhea itself is fairly common in dogs, but certain symptoms and circumstances can make it a more urgent concern. Our article on diarrhea in dogs and when to worry can help you determine whether it’s time to seek professional help. In general, you should reach out to your veterinarian if:

  • Your dog is a young puppy or an elderly dog, as they can be more susceptible to dehydration and complications.
  • The diarrhea is severe, persistent, or contains large amounts of blood.
  • Your dog is also vomiting, lethargic, or showing other signs of illness.
  • You suspect the diarrhea might be linked to ingestion of a toxic substance or a foreign object.

What to Do If Your Dog Has Bloody or Mucusy Diarrhea

If you believe your dog has intestinal parasites or another issue that might be causing their diarrhea, it’s essential to seek veterinary care as soon as possible. Your veterinarian can examine your dog and conduct tests, such as analyzing a stool sample, to determine the underlying cause and recommend the proper remedy.

In the meantime, you can try offering your dog a bland diet, such as boiled chicken and rice, to help ease their digestive upset. Make sure they have access to fresh water at all times, as diarrhea can lead to dehydration. And above all, monitor your dog closely for any changes or worsening symptoms, as early intervention is key to a quick and successful recovery.

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