My Yorkshire Terrier Has Diarrhea, What Should I Do?

Adult Yorkie

When your Yorkshire Terrier has diarrhea, he or she is feeling discomfort. Diarrhea is a gastrointestinal sign that something is amiss internally.

It may be temporary, but liver problems are also common for this adorable dog breed.

Dehydration from Diarrhea is a Serious Issue

Small dogs such as Yorkshire Terriers become dehydrated fast if they lose too much fluid from a bout with diarrhea.

Puppies and older Yorkies may experience loose bowel movements from time to time. Their condition may worsen medically if the diarrhea persists.

No matter the age your Yorkie though, if it shows signs of weakness and has sunken eye sockets, seek immediate medical attention for your pet.

Liver Disease

It’s common for pet owners to feel guilty when their Yorkie gets diarrhea after they gave their pet different types of food. That’s debatable.

It might not have been the food that caused the illness.

Some sources say pet owners have nothing to do with causing their pets liver disease and liver disease doesn’t happen because of dietary changes or environmental changes.

Other sources state that feeding a dog onions, acetaminophen pain pills, mushrooms, and garlic can damage its liver.

We can say for sure that Yorkies with normal livers efficiently remove excess bile and high excess bile causes liver disease.

Signs of liver disease include seizures, yellowing in the white parts of the eyes (jaundice), vomiting, tiredness, and diarrhea.

A veterinarian will run tests and decide on the proper treatment, which may include antibiotics.


Lactulose and Diarrhea

Lactulose, a syrup laxative available by prescription, is given to dogs who have high blood ammonia or hepatic encephalopathy, a liver dysfunction.

Lactulose is a double sugar, so diabetic pets should use caution when ingesting. The colon contains bacteria that break down the sugars to decrease ammonia.

This is a good thing. The problem is the bacteria wants more ammonia, not less, so this may cause some irritation and an increase in fluid in the fecal matter.

The process happens too quickly to stop diarrhea. The easiest solution is to seek medical attention and ask to lower the dosage.

Be Aware of Other Symptoms that Accompany Diarrhea

Bright Red or Dark Red Blood

Hematochezia (bright red) blood is fresh, comes from the rectal area and is caused by straining. Melena (dark, black) blood is older from within the body.

It could originate from the small intestine, esophagus, stomach and in rare cases from the lungs, nasal or oral cavities.

Mucus in Stools

Mucus comes from the colon’s lining and can accompany diarrhea as well. It has the consistency of jelly.

High Body Temperature

A fever may be an indication of an infection and diarrhea may occur with it. Use a pet thermometer to take your dog’s temperature. Pet supply stores carry them.

A fever is 103.5 degrees Fahrenheit. If it’s that high, take your pet to the veterinarian.

When You First Notice Your Yorkie has Diarrhea: What to Try at Home

Food Sensitivity: Handling Food Allergies

Try these steps for the first 12 to 24 hours. Eliminate the possibility of a food allergy by limiting food intake during this period. This helps slow down the diarrhea expelling of runny stools.

Give your pet fresh, cold, clean water. Fill up a clean bowl with filtered tap water.

Wash the bowl out two or more times per day and add more water when it gets low.

Yorkie eating

If the diarrhea has stopped, introduce food that is light and easy on your pet’s stomach. Prepare something bland like mashed up potatoes in small pieces and chicken broth, the low salt kind.

Gradually add meat. Try plain white rice mixed well with a boiled white chicken breast. Cut it up in small pieces. Be careful not to add seasonings to the food.

In two weeks, add a new food to your pet’s diet. Repeat every two weeks, adding something new like carrots, fish, or baby peas, for example.

Seek medical attention to treat anything other than a food allergy. Veterinarians can assess the symptoms more accurately because they treat animals daily.

Diarrhea Prevention Tips

  • Gradually introduce new foods by combining two foods together, mixing well. Watch for signs of food intolerance. Slow changes help Yorkies adjust to new food additions to their diet and lower the risk of bouts with diarrhea.
  • On a regular basis, remove small objects from your floors. Items like keys and coins are things Yorkies like to try to experiment with eating.
  • Take your Yorkie to the veterinarian for vaccinations and de-worming annually.
  • When groups of people visit, it may cause tension for your Yorkie. Set up a safe-retreat in a part of your home for your Yorkie to retreat. Place a doggie bed and some pet toys there to help your pet de-stress.
  • Trash is a source of bacteria. Use tall trash cans so that your pet cannot reach them.

Diarrhea can be serious especially for the small Yorkshire Terrier breed.

While it is always good to be knowledgeable about the symptoms and treatment options for diarrhea, remember: A veterinarian is an expert who can diagnose and properly treat your pet.

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