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Senior Dog Defecating in House (WHAT TO DO)

Corgi looking up at camera with a guilty look on its face

Is your senior dog (house-trained) pooping in the house? If your answer is yes, you are not alone. Many owners have to deal with this problem as their canine friend grows old and develops different health conditions. Keep reading to know what you can do to prevent your senior dog from defecating in the house.

How to Stop Your Senior Dog from Defecating in House?

Several different reasons can make your pooch poop in the vicinity of your house. Some of them can be cured while others are managed through care and precautions. Some of the most common causes of inappropriate defecation and their potential solutions are discussed below.

Weak Muscles of the Anal Sphincter

Yellow Labrador Retriever sitting in green grass and looking up at the camers

The muscles and nerves of canines weaken with age and they are unable to hold themselves for too long. This natural degeneration of your dog’s body can’t be treated and you will have to manage it. Using puppy pads and making indoor dog potty are the most popular methods to solve this problem. You will also need to give your pup some extra toilet breaks to minimize the chances of accidents.

Canine Cognitive Dysfunction

Portrait of a long haired Chihuahua outdoors

Canine Cognitive Dysfunction is often referred to as the dog version of Alzheimer’s disease. In this condition, canines find it hard to remember their potty training and will eliminate inappropriately. This condition cannot be treated and you will have to manage it through precautionary measures.

For example, limiting your dog to certain parts of the house and covering them with puppy pads is quite effective. In extreme cases, dog diapers can also be used, but only after consulting your vet. 

Anal Gland Issues

Human hand using a tissue to express a dog's anal glands

These glands are found on either side of your dog’s rectum and secrete a strong-smelling fluid when your pooch defecates. If these glands are not expressed naturally, they must be emptied regularly to avoid infections. Alternatively, increasing the fiber in your dog’s diet can also improve the natural expression of these glands.

Anal gland abscesses is another serious medical condition that can affect senior dogs. In most cases, the vet will start the treatment with anti-inflammatory and antibiotic medications. If things don’t improve, the surgical removal of your dog’s anal glands is used as the last resort.

Back Injuries and Intervertebral Disc Disease

portrait of a boxer standing on a wooden deck and  looking at the camera

Any trauma to your dog’s back or spine can affect his/her control over the bowel. If you feel that’s the case, it’s recommended to consult your vet immediately. This is because these injuries can quickly turn into serious problems that may require surgical intervention.

Most back injuries can be treated with anti-inflammatory medications, provided that your pooch gets proper rest. However, serious conditions, like a ruptured intervertebral disc, can require surgery to reverse the damage.

Parasitic Infections

Old dachshund with a grey muzzle, laying on a floor and looking in the direction of the camera.

These infections are very common among dogs because they are surrounded by a variety of parasites. Fortunately, these infections are quite easy to prevent and cure. For example, you should provide your pooch with regular worm treatment to limit the chances of these infections. Similarly, a course of antibiotic medications will treat the ailment.

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