The first step to treat an acute NON severe case of diarrhea is to limit food for a 12 to 24 hour period. If a Yorkie is sensitive to a food ingredient, this gives the stomach a rest. If the diarrhea is due to another medical cause, this will limit the amount of watery stools that are expelled (which can quickly lead to dehydration, weakness and weight loss). During this time, you will want to be sure to offer a LOT of water. What can you to to help a Yorkie drink enough water
? If the water is fresh, clean and cold. We always recommend using a filter for the kitchen tap water. There can be all sort of nasty elements in tap water (and can be the cause of the diarrhea in the first place!). So, use filtered water, make sure that the bowl is clean (clean it at least 2 times per day) and replenish it often with fresh, cold water.
If a Yorkie’s diarrhea can seemed to clear up within this time frame, it can help to then offer a bland diet. It is best to begin with a low salt chicken broth and mashed up potatoes pieces. If that is tolerated, you may want to have the next meal be tiny pieces of boiled white breast chicken meat and plain, un-salted, un-seasoned white rice. Blend together well. If you suspect food allergies or a food sensitivity, keep the dog on this diet for two weeks. It can take that long for the trigger to go away. Then slowly introduce a new food. One new ingredient every 2 weeks. This can include: baby peas, carrots, potatoes, fish, etc.
FOR MODERATE TO SEVERE CASES - If the diarrhea is not clearing up or if a Yorkie has other persisting issues like bloody diarrhea, moderate to severe vomiting, extreme weakness, fever and/or signs of dehydration, it will be important to bring the dog to an experienced and reputable veterinarian. The vet will run tests to find the cause of the symptoms. This often includes testing of a stool sample and blood tests. Other tests may include an ultrasound, cultures and/or a biopsy. For dogs that are very weak and dehydrated, an IV may need to be run in order to stabilize them.
Never ignore diarrhea when it comes to a Yorkie puppy. It CAN be fatal. The top five most common reasons for a Yorkie puppy to have diarrhea are:
1. Stress – Going to a new home, meeting new people and/or new animals, seeing new sights and hearing new sounds can be very overwhelming for a young puppy. Please follow a proper schedule of socialization and introduction. Note: You may wish to read Faye Dunningham’s top rated book: The Well Socialized Dog
. It’s a great guide for puppies and Yorkies of all ages.
2. Change in diet – All dogs, and particularly small dogs like the Yorkshire Terrier need a very slow change when switching foods. With a gradual introduction, the change can result in stomach upset, vomiting and diarrhea.
3. Ingestion of a foreign object – Puppies are notorious for mouthing inedible objects. This can be a serious issue and can be fatal.
4. Parasites – This must be treated by a vet. A puppy can be born with worms or they can be transferred to the pup when he is nursing. Other possible parasites are Coccidia and Giardia.
5. Viral infection – There are many types of viral infections, and one of them is parvovirus. It is a particularly harsh infection and is fatal for many puppies. Because this is a possible cause of diarrhea with Yorkies, it is best to have a veterinarian determine the cause, which will include checking for Parvo. (Note: Parvo can pop up in the cleanest of settings, so please do not believe that only ‘dirty kennels’ are the origination points of this disease.)