As a pet parent, you’ve likely experienced the struggle of your dog’s digestive issues at one point or another. From upset stomachs to constipation, you may wonder if pumpkin can help dogs poop. While many remedies are available, one that has gained popularity is pumpkin.

Before starting any supplements, including pumpkin, it’s a good idea to talk to your dog’s veterinarian first. Tummy troubles affect dogs all over the world. According to a study published in Veterinary World, five digestive problems were commonly reported in the nearly 4,000 canine participants. These included vomiting, diarrhea, vomiting with diarrhea, anorexia, and constipation. 

In this article, we will explore the potential benefits of adding canned pumpkin or pumpkin puree to your dog’s diet and delve into whether it genuinely aids in relieving constipation and promoting healthy digestion.

All featured products are chosen at the discretion of the author. However, Vetstreet may make a small affiliate commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Does Pumpkin Help Dogs Poop?

Plain pumpkin is full of nutrients and a viable form of fiber designed to add bulk to your dog’s stool, making it easier to pass and helping with constipation. It’s not as simple as adding canned pumpkin or pumpkin puree to your dog’s diet and waiting for poop to happen.

According to Dr. Lisa Freeman of the Tufts Clinical Nutrition Service, “Dogs and cats don’t require any fiber in their diet, but it can help animals with a variety of issues from diarrhea, constipation, diabetes, high-fat levels in the blood, or to help an overweight pet feel more full…often, pumpkin is recommended as a way to add fiber to the diet.”

However, Dr. Freeman indicates there are two types of fiber in foods – soluble and insoluble, each of which has different effects in the gastrointestinal tract and throughout the body. 

Freeman typically sees pet parents giving their pet anywhere between 1/4 teaspoon to 2 teaspoons of pumpkin with meals. Unfortunately, she says this may not help and can even cause problems.

“If you wanted to give the same amounts to your pet that is found in one popular high fiber therapeutic diet, you’d need to feed more than more than 2 ½-cups of pumpkin per day to a cat and nearly 12 cups per day to a medium-sized dog,” she writes.

Amazingly, pumpkins contain both forms of fiber. At least 60 percent of the fiber in pumpkin is the soluble form, which slows how the body absorbs glucose in the dog’s bloodstream. The remaining 40 percent is insoluble fiber, which affects overall gut health.

dog eating pumpkin in bowl

Does Canned Pumpkin Help Dogs Poop?

When talking about pumpkin for constipation relief in dogs, we are referring to canned pumpkin. Different types of canned pumpkin are available, so pet parents must read labels carefully. 

Never give your dog pumpkin pie filling, which is full of sugars and spices that will further upset your dog’s tummy and may even spike their sugar levels. Pumpkin pie filling may also contain allspice, clove, or toxic ingredients, such as Xylitol, an artificial sweetener that can lead to death.

Canned pumpkin, which only contains one ingredient, pumpkin, can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet. It may even slow or stop diarrhea and help a constipated dog. 

Dogs should not eat pumpkin pie, despite those pleading eyes that beg for a piece. Not only is it filled with sugar, but it contains ingredients that can cause digestive issues or create an emergency situation. These ingredients include, but are not limited to, dairy products, salt, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, or artificial sweeteners. 

While dogs can eat raw pumpkin in moderation, it can pose a choking hazard or lead to intestinal blockage, so feeding pure 100 percent canned pumpkin is best. However, canned pumpkin can be calorie-dense. Stay tuned as we offer some other suggestions. 

How to Keep Your Dog In Regular Digestive Shape

The best way to prevent digestive issues, constipation, or diarrhea is by keeping your dog’s gut in tip-top shape. You may hear your veterinarian talk about your dog being ‘regular.’ This means maintaining regular, healthy bowel movements that are consistent, well-formed, and comfortable. 

Here are a few characteristics of dog poop that indicate a problem is present or brewing:

  • Slime or mucus in the stool, which can mean a GI tract infection 
  • Soft, runny, liquidy consistency, which suggests something digestive is going on
  • Crumbly consistency, which can mean constipation or the dog ate a bone
  • Chalky consistency, which can be associated with malabsorption disease
  • Hard stool, which may indicate dehydration
  • Any color from normal can be from a food they ate or a digestive issue

Keeping your dog regular with a healthy gut isn’t very difficult, but it takes due diligence and keeping track of what goes in (and out) of your dog’s body. Here are some ways to improve your dog’s gut health:

  1. Feed a high-quality diet that meets your dog’s specific needs.
  2. Add a high-quality probiotic to your dog’s diet. Talk to your veterinarian for specific guidance in selecting one for your pooch.
  3. Keep your dog hydrated and ensure they drink plenty of cool, clean water daily.
  4. Watch for any allergies, food intolerances, sensitivities, or reactions to ingredients in food and treats. Allergies can lead to gut inflammation, which leads to more problems.
  5. Reduce stress. Play with your dog, go for walks, limit triggers that make them upset (fireworks, thunder, etc.), and be the person your dog knows you are.

Our List

Products to Try To Help Dogs Poop

Regarding proper digestion, keeping stools firm, and preventing either diarrhea or constipation in dogs, consider items from our curated list of products. We like the idea of using one of these products versus a highly caloric canned pumpkin, which may also be high in sodium. As always, talk to your veterinarian with any specific questions or if your dog has ongoing digestive issues.

Great Poop Probiotics for Dogs

Great Poop total digestive support dogs

The great part about including a chewable probiotic in your dog’s daily diet is the ease of administration. Packed with fiber and natural flaxseed, this American-made tasty treat provides total digestive support. With two billion CFUs (colony-forming units) for a healthy gut, your dog gets both prebiotics and probiotics in one convenient chicken chew. The fiber component and digestive enzymes help keep dogs regular and consistent.

Highlights

  • Contains bromelain for healthy digestion and firm, consistent stool
  • Contains the prebiotic inulin to feet the gut good bacteria
  • Packed with flaxseed for dietary fiber and omega-3 fatty acids
  • Includes probiotics for healthy gut microflora
  • Contains no corn, soy, artificial flavors or preservatives
  • Made in the United States
  • May help with gassiness, constipation, and bloating

Things to Consider

  • Only available in chicken flavor
  • Dogs over 25 pounds require more than one chew per day

Nutramax Proviable Digestive Health Supplement

Proviable for dogs digestive support

This simple, sprinkle-on capsule is made by Nutramax Laboratories, which has been researching and developing high-quality nutritional supplements since 1992 in South Carolina. Proviable is a multi-strain probiotic supplement for dogs often recommended by veterinarians. The prebiotic portion promotes a healthy intestinal tract, while the probiotics support the dog after any digestive imbalances occur. With five billion CFUs, this supplement can be given in the short term for intestinal balance or long term for intestinal health under your veterinarian’s direction.

Highlights

  • Contains a minimum of five million CFUs per capsule
  • Blister-packed capsules are easy to administer or sprinkle on food
  • Can be given to puppies, adults, and seniors
  • Capsules have a two-year shelf life (check expiration date on packaging)
  • Dosage does not vary by weight of dog (give one daily or as directed by your veterinarian)

Things to Consider

  • Capsules are made of beef gelatin
  • The time it takes to show results varies by pet
  • A bit pricey

Purina Pro Plan FortiFlora Veterinary Supplement

FortiFlora for dog digestive systems

This liver-flavored powder is easily mixed with your dog’s meals and is designed to manage diarrhea and promote a healthy immune system. FortiFlora is often recommended by veterinarians, as it contains antioxidants for immune support. The ease of use and convenient packaging make it a favorite of pet parents who prefer a powder supplement for digestive support.

Highlights

  • Received the NASC (National Animal Supplement Council) seal of approval
  • Can be used with puppies or adult dogs with diarrhea
  • Tasty liver flavor most dogs love
  • May be helpful for excessive gassiness
  • Developed by a team of scientists, veterinarians, and nutritionists
  • Responsibly sourced ingredients

Things to Consider

  • Also available in chewable tablets
  • The first ingredient listed is animal digest

The Honest Kitchen Perfect Form Herbal Digestive Supplement

Honest Kitchen dogs digestive with pumpkin

The Honest Kitchen has a long-standing reputation for high-quality, human-grade products. Their Perfect Form Herbal Digestive Supplement is easily mixed with water to form a gel. Mix the gel twice daily or as needed into your dog’s food. Thanks to ingredients like organic pumpkin seed, slippery elm, fennel, and plantain, your dog’s GI tract is soothed and protected during times of loose stools, environmental stresses, switching to a new diet, or during bouts of dietary indiscretion.

Highlights

  • NASC certified
  • Made with herbs for digestive support
  • Can be used as needed or daily
  • Made without corn, wheat, soy, GMO ingredients, preservatives, or by-products
  • Human-grade formulation
  • Does not require refrigeration
  • Contains no ingredients from animal sources

Things to Consider

  • Has a bland flavor
  • May need to hide it in a treat if the dog isn’t fond of it being mixed into their food

Weruva Pumpkin Patch Up! Food Supplement Pouches

does pumpkin help dogs poop?

If you believe happy dogs have happy poops, consider Weruva’s pumpkin puree in a pouch. Each pouch contains one simple ingredient – pumpkin – plus water for processing. The pureed format makes mixing with your dog’s food easy, and most dogs love the taste. It can also be served plain as a treat. With both soluble and insoluble fibers, this product is designed to support your dog’s digestive system.

Highlights

  • Pureed pumpkin is easy to mix or serve as a treat
  • BPA and gluten free
  • Contains soluble and insoluble fibers
  • Convenient single-serve pouches
  • Can be given to puppies but in a smaller dose (check with your veterinarian)

Things to Consider

  • Each pouch contains 189 kcal/kg; 5 kcal/pouch
  • Must refrigerate unused portion
  • Product of Thailand