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Do dogs get diarrhea during heat?

Do you have a female dog? If you are not planning on breeding her, make sure that you have her spayed- it can prevent a whole host of health issues and complications. Allowing your dog to go without being spayed means, at some point, she will go into heat, which can have some nasty repercussions. From diarrhea to running away, here is what you can expect when your non-spayed dog goes into heat.

Do dogs get diarrhea during heat?

When female dogs go into heat, they can get diarrhea as well as vomit. As far as whether diarrhea means that your female dog is in heat, no- not necessarily. There are some fairly common reasons why dogs can come down with diarrhea or loose stool, including a parasite or a case of ‘pyometra’, which is an infection of your dog’s reproductive organs. The best approach is to take your dog to the vet for evaluation to prevent dehydration and further medical issues.

What should I do if my dog has gotten diarrhea?

Dogs get into and eat some nasty things, which means they could get sick, vomit, or get diarrhea at some point in time. When should pet owners take their dogs to vets for these symptoms? This is largely dependent on your dog’s distinct personality and behavior; are they acting out of character? Do you have reason to be concerned?

It is always best to be safe rather than sorry, so whenever possible, take your pet to the veterinarian for assessment when it has been acting oddly or has had diarrhea and is at-risk of dehydration. Furthermore, only you know if your dog has food sensitivities or gastrointestinal upset that typically resolves itself on its own. For these reasons, you are the best judge of if and when to seek out a vet.

Some symptoms should be assessed by a veterinarian- particularly if they are paired with your dog’s diarrhea, like vomiting, pale gums, lethargy, or they have had symptoms for a few days.

If your dog is older or has medical issues, like Cushing’s disease or diabetes, you may want to seek medical assistance sooner.

There are some things that owners can do to relieve their pet’s diarrhea, whether the dog is a female in heat or not:

  • Fasting
  • Bland food diet.
  • Canned pumpkin or sweet potato in their food.
  • Pedialyte or electrolytes.
  • Plain yogurt for probiotics.
  • Baby food diet.

The goal of these interventions is to help alleviate gastrointestinal distress and replace lost fluids, while also providing foods that are gentle on your dog’s stomach.

Do dogs get sick during heat?

When female dogs are in heat, they may display symptoms of being sick, such as diarrhea or vomiting. Signs of sickness do not necessarily mean that a dog is in heat, however, so make sure to see a vet to rule out an underlying medical issue such as a parasite.

When your dog is in heat, its hormone levels are high, which can cause gastrointestinal distress. As for diarrhea, the hormones are processed in the dog’s liver and sent out of the body, which may result in loose or bloody stool.

About a month after females go into heat, they may contract Pyometra, an infection in their reproductive organs. Some symptoms that manifest include swelling of the abdomen, a fever, lethargy, and vomiting. Since this infection is life-threatening, it merits a trip to the vet when your dog is in heat and displaying symptoms of sickness like vomiting and diarrhea, just to be safe. In cases of severe Pyometra, the dog may require emergency surgery to spay them. Talk to your vet to learn more.  

What are the signs that a dog is in heat?

Wondering how to tell if your female dog is in heat? There are basically three telltale signs that your pet is in heat; the early phases, known as the Proestrus Stage.

If you know your dog’s behaviors pretty well, owners should be able to pick up on the signs that their pet is in heat. The Proestrus stage lasts anywhere from four days to a couple of weeks, but on average, lasts around a week.

Some other signs that your dog is in heat include these:


Look closely and carefully at your dog to identify if its privates are swollen. A swollen Vulva is a pretty definitive sign that a female dog is in heat.


If you notice a pink or red discharge from your female dog, she could be in heat, especially if this is paired with a swollen vulva. Use a clean tissue to gently wipe your pet to see if there are any signs of blood to be sure.


Another sign that your dog could be in heat is attention from other neighborhood dogs. Other dogs can smell when there is a female in heat nearby, so if your dog is in heat, you will likely have uninvited visiting canines around.


When your dog is in heat, you may notice some subtle to quite-dramatic personality changes in your pet. Sometimes females in heat act very differently than they did, and no two dogs are the same. Some female dogs in heat may isolate and withdraw, while others may not want their owners out of their sight.

Also, owners should be cognizant that some female dogs in heat exhibit a tendency to roam and run away, as they seek out a potential mate. This can be dangerous, risking the dog becoming lost or being injured by a car.


Another indicator is your pet’s appetite and any changes that you observe. Some dogs may eat next to nothing in heat, while others eat much more.