The Proof Is in the Poop: What Does Dog Poop Look Like on a Raw Diet?

The Proof Is in the Poop: What Does Dog Poop Look Like on a Raw Diet?

Life would be a lot easier if our pets could tell us how they’re feeling. But, luckily, their behavior, mood, and actions can help give us a better understanding of their health.

One of the most important indicators of your pet’s well-being is their poop. The color, consistency, and overall look of their excrement can give you an idea if your pup is properly digesting their food and even give you insight into their internal health.

When your dog starts a raw food diet, you may notice changes to their stool. Read on to learn what dog poop on a raw diet can look like to understand how your dog’s digestive system is adapting to the change.


The “Perfect” Poop

Regardless of the type of diet you’re feeding your dog, you can always be on the lookout for healthy poo.

According to the American Kennel Club, the perfect dog poo should be:

  • •Chocolate brown in color, though this can vary slightly depending on their diet. Other colors can be indicators of issues. For example, green pet poop could be a sign of a gallbladder issue while excrement with a yellow or orange tinge could be caused by a liver problem.

  • •Shaped like one, long log piece. If their droppings are more hard and round, they could be dehydrated which can lead to constipation.

  • •Compact, moist, and easy to pick up in a doggy bag. Like people, dogs can sometimes get upset stomachs. If they’re straining to use the bathroom, they may be constipated. Loose stools can be a sign of intestinal upset that might resolve itself within a day.

  • •Free of debris that isn’t food-related. White spots in your dog’s poop can be a sign of tapeworms. Excess grass or hair in your dog’s stool may mean he or she could be uncomfortable as well.

Always keep an eye on your dog’s bowel movements to make sure there’s nothing out of the ordinary happening.

Raw Fed Dog Poop vs. Kibble Dog Poop

Brown dog pooping in tall grass

Of course, your dog's poop is heavily influenced by his or her diet. Here are some things to keep in mind when comparing a dog on the raw diet’s stool vs. a dog being fed kibble’s excrement. 

Dog Poop on Raw Diet

First things first, raw pet food can actually make your dog poop less! This is because your pet is now ingesting food that is being digested and properly utilized by the body, resulting in less waste. Plus, another of the benefits of feeding raw is your dog’s poop may be less smelly.

With raw feeding, you may notice that your dog’s poop looks:

  • •Smaller than usual, because more food is being digested rather than discarded. 

  • •Lighter in color. The bone content in the diet accounts for it turning white. It’s not uncommon for the excrement of dogs on the raw diet to turn white and disintegrate if left outdoors.

  • •Firmer than usual. This is because your dog's digestive tract is better able to extract moisture and nutrients from a species-appropriate raw diet. The more nutrients get extracted from the food, the less waste comes out the other end. If you notice your dog straining while pooping, that is normal and even healthy since it can help express the anal glands. Your dog’s raw diet hard poop shouldn’t be confused with constipation.

  • •Covered in some mucus. Mucus-covered stools can appear at any time, no matter how long a dog has been on the raw diet, and are generally no reason for concern. When first switching to a raw diet, this may be a sign that the digestive tract is ridding the junk from its system, which is a normal part of detox.

It’s also important to note that black dog poop on raw food can occur as your dog’s digestive enzymes get used to more meat and organ matter in their diet. As long as it’s dark and firm, that’s good. If you notice streaks of red or a tar consistency, this could be the result of an imbalanced diet or an internal problem, and you should consult with your vet.

Dog Kibble

Dog Poop on Kibble Diet

With typical kibble dog food, your pup will likely have more frequent bowel movements that are large and smelly. That’s because less food is actually being digested and upwards of 70% of what they’re fed is discharged in their stool.

Dogs that eat kibble may also experience an upset tummy more often because they’re lacking the proper nutrients. At the same time, the dry food lacks moisture, so they will need to drink more water throughout the day, which can cause diarrhea.

As you can see, the proof is all in the poop! Learn more about how the raw diet can benefit your pet today.

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