How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Candy Your Own Question
Candy, Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 11619
Experience:  Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Former Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Candy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My dog poops in her sleep. The vet has told me that everything

Resolved Question:

My dog poops in her sleep. The vet has told me that everything is normal. I don't know what to do. Could it be her diet? She has no other accidents in the house and she has learned to scratch the door when she needs to go out but the pooping in the sleep is driving me crazy!
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Candy replied 7 years ago.

Hello and thank you for writting in.


Can you tell me if her bowel movements are normal during the day.?


Does she get in position to go or does it just fall out?


When she goes in her sleep is it normal and formed or is the stool loose?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Yes, the stools are normal during the day. I usually find a very hard piece of stool on her bed once she gets up.
Expert:  Candy replied 7 years ago.

Ok, Thank you for the information.


I just have a few more questions?


Did your vet do x-rays?


Do you know if a recat exam was done?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
No x-rays have been done but several rectal exams have been don and the finding have been normal with the exception of full anal glands
Expert:  Candy replied 7 years ago.



I can understand your frustration. Bowel incontinence will most often have some symptoms during the day as well as at night. So the fact that she is only having this problem when she sleeps would lead me to belive the problem may be neurological.


I would recommend having a complete neurological exam done as well as x rays, there may be a reason she is not fully eliminating during the days and the feces that is left in the rectum is being released when she relaxes all her muscles in the rectum during sleep.X-rays may be able to tell if there is any disc or spinal compression or lesions.


If there is a veterinary neurologist in your area you may want to have a consultation as this is their area of expertize. I think this would be the best option. Your girl is much younger then most dogs that present with this problem, so I would continue to seek the cause.


I do not believe that her diet would be the cause of this as you would see symptoms all the time and not just while sleeping.


Please keep me updated on her progress.





Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Could my dog have a constipation problem? She does seem to strain when she's trying to poop.
Expert:  Candy replied 7 years ago.
Is the stool hard or pellet like during the day
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Her stools are always like pellets

Expert:  Candy replied 7 years ago.

Ok, This changes things somewhat, This was the reason I asked about the stools earlier on.


If the stools are always like pellets then this is not normal and could be a sign of constipation. It may be that she is just not expelling all of the hard stool in her rectum and the remaining is just falling out when she relaxes these muscles.


In this case a change in food to one that is higher in fiber may be beneficial. Change the food slowly to avoid stomach upset. You can also try adding a small amount of real pumpkin to her daily diet. Real pumpkin only not pie filling.You can also sprinkle a small about of metamucil on her food to add fiber and soften her stool.

Candy and 2 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you