How often should a dog poop?

how often does a dog poop

As a dog owner, you naturally worry about the health of your friend. An important point is the defecation. Quantity, color, frequency can give information about the state of health of your dog. But how often does a dog have to poop?

How often your dog has to poop depends, among other things, on the food. Normally, your dog should poop 1 to 2 times a day. If your dog tolerates the food very well and can process a lot, then more remains in the body. If you have a low-quality food with many ingredients that your dog can not really do anything with, he will have to poop more often and usually also larger piles.

How long can a dog hold poop?

There are sometimes days when your dog doesn’t defecate. Concerned dog owners worry after one day if something is wrong and wonder how long a dog can hold poop.

As a rule of thumb, if your dog has not defecated for more than 24 hours, it indicates that your dog is constipated or at least has problems defecating.

However, older dogs, because they eat less and are less active, may only defecate every other day. The best thing to do is to observe your dog’s behavior and watch for changes.

In our case it was actually like this yesterday. Our Broholmer did not defecate yesterday. But this was not a reason for alarm because she had no abnormalities and behaved normally.

This morning she defecated directly on the meadow. However, if she had continued to do nothing during the day, we would have slowly become active.

So if your dog doesn’t defecate for a day, it’s not a problem, that’s how it is with us sometimes. In case of longer breaks, you should get to the bottom of the causes and symptoms in case of a possible constipation and act early.

How often does a dog have to poop

How much feces does a dog defecate

Not only the number, but also the quantity, i.e. how much faeces your dog produces, is crucial.
The more nutrients your dog can process from the food, the smaller the faeces.

This often indicates a good dog food. However, if the dog faeces are very large and maybe even several times a day, you may have an inferior food or your dog may not tolerate the food well.

If almost all of it comes out the back, there won’t be as much of what you put in the front left for the dog.

Especially with BARFEN you will notice that the dog poop will be much smaller.

How can I tell if my dog is constipated?

If your dog does not poop for a long time, it is possible that he is constipated. Symptoms of constipation can include the following:

  • Tense belly, abdominal pain: Does your dog feel pain when you touch his belly? Or does the belly feel extremely tense? This can be an indication of constipation.
  • Hunched posture: Does your dog walk strangely? Does he adopt a crooked posture to compensate for the pain somehow?
  • Hard Painful Poop: Your dog has still some bowel movements but it is very heavy and your dog is struggling?
  • Dog tries to defecate to no avail:
  • The most obvious symptom is when your dog repeatedly but unsuccessfully tries to defecate.
  • Lack of energy:
  • If your dog is actually rather active, but has no ambition to move, this can also be an indication of constipation.
  • Mucus or blood in the stool
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Restlessness or lethargy

So if your dog is not defecating and possibly showing any of the above symptoms you should definitely talk to your vet. Definitely don’t procrastinate or try to solve it yourself.

What are the causes of constipation in dogs?

A common cause of constipation in dogs is that they have eaten something that is not digestible or not easily digestible. This can be a dry piece of bone, but also things that a dog is not supposed to eat like small toy parts.

Other causes of constipation can be

  • Dehydration: make sure your dog stays hydrated. If your dog is generally a “bad” drinker there are tricks to help your dog drink more
  • Food: You have either too much or too little fiber in your food.
  • Your dog does not get enough exercise
  • The proportion of bones in the food is too high. This can happen especially with a raw diet if you feed too many chicken necks or similar.
  • Fractures in the pelvic area can lead to constipation in your dog.
  • If your dog has to take medication, constipation can be a possible side effect.
  • Your dog’s age is also crucial. Older dogs suffer from constipation more often than young dogs do

Hard faeces often precede real constipation. So if you notice that your dog’s faeces are becoming harder and harder and no longer have the desired and healthy colour and shape, you should already take action because something is wrong.

If we notice that our dogs’ faeces are firmer than normal, we leave out the bones for 1-2 days when feeding raw

How should dog poop look like?

how should dog poop look like
© Detlef Dä

The appearance and firmness is an indicator if your dog is healthy or not. But what should dog feces look like on a healthy dog?

If your dog is healthy, the faeces will have a brown colour and feel roughly like dough. When you pick it up with the bag, you should be able to squeeze it easily and see the shape. It should be a well-shaped “sausage”, not too hard and not too soft.

What color should dog excrement be

As already described, dog excrement is normally brown. The color, however, can change in the short term due to the food. If we feed one day only rumen, the pile is also sometimes greenish.

This comes exclusively from the green rumen and is okay. In the following I will list possible color variations and their meaning:


If the dog feces has a yellowish-orange color it can indicate that you have fed carrots. Carrots are one of the vegetables that dogs eat every day. The yellow color can also indicate liver or bile problems.


White poop often indicates too many bones. Your dog needs bones, but if he eats too many bones the feces can become white and crumbly.

Bone feces are not to be trifled with. The poop balls can literally become bone hard and lead to intestinal obstruction.


Black or very dark dog feces may indicate internal injuries to the gastrointestinal tract.


Green feces can simply come from food (rumen or other vegetables) or from eating too much grass. If the color does not change back to brown it can be problems with the gall bladder.


Red dog faeces can simply come from the food on one side. Beets, for example, can turn the faeces red. But blood can also be the reason why the faeces turn red.


Gray color can also occur due to certain foods or due to problems with bile.

Conclusion: How often does a dog poop?

Normally, a dog should defecate between 1 and 2 times a day. If a dog does not tolerate the food or tolerates it badly, it can be more often. Then you should choose a different food.

© Patryk (Contributed image)


I am Marco and I have the pleasure of living with 3 large Mastiff-type dog breeds. I would like to share my dog-related experiences on this blog

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