Diet is the cause - diet is the solution

This is a Blog Post about common ordinary poop problems that arise as a result of diet and eating habits which usually include constipation, excessively bulky and loose stools, or outright diarrhea.

For information on more serious conditions please consult your veterinarian


Prevention can usually be achieved and maintained by feeding a dog food that is close to evenly balanced in calories between protein, fat, and carbohydrates and has sufficient natural sources of insoluble fiber built into the food (like Alfalfa meal, vegetable and cranberry pomace, peas, etc).

A Common cause of Diarrhea is overfeeding.


It is beneficial to have over 80% of the protein be animal sourced protein as opposed to vegetable protein, and use animal fat such as Chicken fat instead of vegetable oils like Canola oil.


When choosing a food make sure it contains the following which help prevent problems from developing to begin with.

PREbiotics (are necessary to feed the PRObiotics).

PRObiotics need to be “encapsulated” (A special process developed by a Ph.D. biologist to  protect them from activating prematurely) so they make it to the colon where they add to the microbiome and help maintain balance in the gut, and return excess moisture to the body to prevent loose stools or diarrhea. Normal probiotics, if they are added to the dog food at all, are prematurely activated by the warmth and moisture when they are bagged and dead long before they are eaten by your dog.

Probiotics will always be helpful but you will have to add them yourself to each meal unless you feed a food like Brothers Dog Food that uses special “Encapsulated” probiotics that are protected from being activated prematurely which is the fate of normal probiotics added to dog food, if they are added at all. Normal probiotics activate prematurely and 99.8% of them are dead by the time your dog eats the food.

Adding probiotics that you know will be dead before the dog eats them is known in the industry as window dressing. The “encapsulated” probiotics are expensive and few dog foods use them so you will need to add them yourself if you don’t feed a food that uses the “specially protected probiotics”.

Add the dry probiotics just before the dog eats the food so they get into the dog before they too end up useless. You probably have about a 15 to 30 minute window. Another alternative is to get probiotics in a capsule you can feed to your dog in a meat treat..

POSTbiotics The name given to the byproducts of insoluble fiber fermented by the probiotics that end up in the colon and continue important processes such as extraction of nutrients and the removal of excess moisture from fecal matter that might otherwise cause diarrhea. [1]

Digestive Enzymes help breakdown the Proteins, (which start as long complex chains of amino acids), into individual amino acids that the body can transport through the gut wall and into the blood stream where they are distributed to the rest of the body via the blood stream. This saves wear and tear on the Pancreas (creating digestive enzymes is a big energy drain on the Pancreas), and strengthens the immune system which is the beneficiary of the surplus energy not needed by the Pancreas.



Fortunately the following problems are generally resolved fairly easily once you understand the causes and their solutions.

CONSTIPATION is not as common as a loose stools or diarrhea but can be caused by medication your veterinarian is prescribing, which can include Antibiotics, and they will usually advise you as to what you can do to counteract the problem.

Adding some pumpkin from a can to the dog food can often help get things back in balance. Not using antibiotics unless the problem is very serious is usually helpful all around. The overuse of antibiotics is a problem in this country.

Eating food that has good fiber content, especially insoluble fiber, helps keep things moving through the gut and prevents the backups that can be so disconcerting.

LOOSE BULKY STOOL is a common problem with kibble dog foods that are full of vegetable protein and carbohydrates. All that vegetable matter produces an excessive amount of bulk that the dog cannot digest and what goes in must come out.

By feeding a food that is high protein with over 80% of the protein from animal sources this problem is usually resolved. The dogs body is designed to process meat and fat, not carbohydrates and vegetable matter, and when fed an appropriate diet has smaller well formed stools.

DIARRHEA The most common cause of diarrhea in a healthy dog is usually caused by overfeeding, or feeding something the dog is not used to eating which is often treats, or just too many of the treats. Not an uncommon problem in a house with other peopler or an owner who cannot refuse a dog who has learned how to beg for treats effectively.

A high protein diet that is balanced evenly between protein, fat, and carbohydrates on a calorie weighted basis is ideal. The pie chart on the left reflects the average distribution of protein, fat, and carbohydrates. The pie chart on the right reflects the optimum distribution based on calories.


Dogs are designed to eat meat and fat and do much better when there are even calories of both and fewer calories of carbohydrates.

The problem is usually diet - the solution is usually diet


Written Feb, 2023

by Richard Darlington, CEO

Brothers Dog Food, LLC



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