10 Things I Wish I’d Known About Dogs

Getting a dog is a delight, but it can also be a crash course with no real blueprint or comprehensive how-to guide. Things have a way of coming up. Curve balls are hurled your way. In four years with my dog, I’ve learned about a lot of things vets don’t mention during that first puppy check-up.

  1. The Meaning Of Mucus In Dog Poop

    A delightful topic, yes, but an important one.

Dog owners know that poop is a barometer of a dog’s health. Next to blood, mucus in a dog’s poop is one of the scarier things you’ll encounter. But here’s what no one tells you: mucus in dog poop is not necessarily a sign of disease.

Mucousy poop is not always a bad sign. In fact, it can be a sign the body is healing. If I had not lived through this experience with my dog or connected with other dog owners whose pups had also gone through it, I’d still be in the dark about it. (Three different vets had no clue what might be going on.) Here’s what I found out.

When drugs like antibiotics or steroids are discontinued, owners frequently report seeing disturbing quantities of mucus in the poop. Far from signaling disease, mucus in this context actually represents a lifting of a toxic burden.

Both of these drugs are known to be rough on the gut. When they’re discontinued, the body expels the mucous lining that had been formed to protect the intestinal wall. Basically, once the drug is no longer being taken, the mucoid plaque is not needed.

The same thing can sometimes happen when the quality of a dog’s food is improved. There again, mucus in the poop is not a cause for concern but rather, a positive sign of detox in progress.

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