Our 5 month old boxer has diarrhoea - is this normal?


Ask A Vet Louise Rayment-Dyble BVetMed CertZooMed MRCVS 

Our 5-month-old boxer has diarrhoea - is this normal?

I have a 5-month-old boxer. He and one of his litter mates have had diarrhoea since they were born. No one can find anything wrong with them. They've been tested for all worms, nothing. They are growing, and mine weighs 30 pounds, is very playful, eats pedigree dog food.

I had to take him off of puppy chow because diarrhoea would literally have a puddle of grease around it. He does drink A LOT of water. What can I do to either stop it or take to my vet for them to check?

Is this even something that I need to be concerned with or could it end up being his "normal"? Megan


Hi Megan,  The causes of diarrhoea are many and varied. As your pup is growing well and not losing weight, it suggests that the large bowel is the source of the problem.  I would definitely recommend taking your puppy back to see your vet though. Even if he has had a stool sample tested before, I would get another one tested (preferably a pooled sample was taken on 2 or 3 occasions). 

Parasites are a common cause of diarrhoea in young dogs and sometimes they are not picked up on a single sample test.  The puddle of oil you describe can sometimes suggest that fat is not being digested properly, which can be a sign of pancreatic insufficiency.  Some dogs are born with this problem, but they are usually more poorly than your pup sounds. 

Never-the-less, he may need to be tested if other tests come back negative. It may be worthwhile changing your pup’s food to a good quality veterinary prescription diet for tummy problems - ask your vet which ones are suitable for growing dogs - and adding in a pre- and a probiotic supplement, which can help maintain good gut function. Again, your vet can advise which one to use.

Best wishes

Louise Rayment-Dyble BVetMed CertZooMed MRCVS 

All Creatures Healthcare