Mucus In Dog’s Poop: When It’s A Good Sign

When owners see large amounts of mucus in their dog’s poop, they often think the worst.

But it’s important to realize mucus can also be seen in the stool when the body is healing.

In this case the mucus is not a symptom of a disease, but a sign of the opposite: recovery.

What causes mucus in dog stool?

Mucus can be caused by everything from inflammatory bowel disease to parasites.

A lesser known — but perhaps more common — cause of mucus in dog’s poop is detox. After a course of drugs or an improvement in diet, the body sheds the mucousy lining it had formed to protect the gut.

Expelling mucus is one of the observable processes a dog’s body goes through after a prolonged period on heavy medication. 

When the drugs (or the poor quality food) have been removed, the mucoid plaque is no longer need and so it’s released.

It’s critical to recognize when mucus is occurring as part of a healing process, because in that case medication is not required and will, in fact, set back healing.

This post is for general informational and educational purposes only. I encourage readers to see my full disclaimer here.

What is mucus in dog’s poop?

A small amount of mucus, usually too little to be noticed, is normal. It’s produced by the dog’s body to lubricate the digestive tract. 

But at certain times there may be an abnormally large amount of mucus. Some owners describe slime on dog poop or say the dog poop looks like jelly.

The pictures show how mucus looked in my dog’s poop at the point when he stopped prednisone after 11 months on the steroid, much of it at high dose.

The poop test

We did a fecal float or “poop test” searching for parasites. There were no worms.

There were bacteria. But, as one vet remarked at the time: what does the presence of bacteria in dog poop really tell you? Dogs’ guts are brimming with bacteria. (So are their mouths, for that matter.) Pathogenic species of bacteria including E. coli, Clostridium perfringens and Salmonella are regularly found in the intestines of healthy dogs. The vet actually said testing for bacteria in dog poop is useless as a diagnostic too.

There’s another problem with testing for bacteria in dog poop: once you find something that is potentially problematic, the temptation is to “do something” about it. And no drug known to man is without side effects or unintended consequences. The moment you medicate with antibiotics in an effort to kill off one bacteria, you enter a world of pain.

For a start, you’ve disturbed the delicate balance of gut flora, the microbiome. Secondly, you’ve taken one step down the slippery path that leads to antibiotic resistance. This is a population-wide effect but also it happens within the one animal. So every unnecessary use of an antibiotic cuts down the chances that antibiotic will be effective on your dog if you need it in the future.

It’s crucial to look a little deeper before a knee-jerk resort to antibiotics for mucus in dog poop.

Vets at a loss over mucus in dog’s poop

Why aren’t you hearing this from your vet? 

Because, evidently, vets don’t know it. 

Several different vets involved in the care of my pup in 2019 — one of them an experienced internal medicine specialist and another a veterinary nutritionist — had no idea what might be causing the mucus. The third, a home visit vet, prescribed metronidazole (flagyl) in case it was a dog stomach bacterial infection. 

I filled the prescription but thankfully never gave the drug. That would have been not only 100% counterproductive, but downright dangerous for my dog. 


Beware metronidazole for dogs (flagyl for dogs)

When vets encounter persistent dog diarrhea, metronidazole is often what they reach for.

Screenshot with red circle around warning about the drug metronidazole
A warning on a government site linking metronidazole to brain inflammation or meningitis.

I assume that’s why our vet suggested it for mucousy stools. Sort of a Hail Mary pass. “I don’t know what’s going on, so let’s try this.” Which might be worthwhile if the shot in the dark could do no harm. 

Though commonly prescribed, metronidazole is far from a gentle drug. 

Metronidazole side effects for dogs can be very severe, in some cases life threatening. Among other things, metronidazole can cause meningitis. To understand my horror at discovering this, you need to know that Steroid Responsive Meningitis Arteritis, or SRMA, was the potentially fatal condition we had just spent a year clawing our way back from — as the vet who prescribed it was well aware. 

I mention this not to vet bash but to make an important point. Vets are fallible. They make mistakes. They don’t know everything. It’s up to you to investigate every last thing and double check what they recommend as it applies to your particular dog. 

What I did for mucus in dog’s poop instead of giving drugs

I opted to monitor the situation rather than introduce yet another drug into my dog’s system. 

What happened? The mucus-coated poops passed on their own within a few weeks. 

In our case, detox as the mechanism behind the mucus made total sense.

Consider the context.

We were coming off 11 months of high-dose steroids (prednisolone) and multiple rounds of five different antibiotics. All these drugs are known to damage the body, not least the gut.

Trying to repair this damage is one of the reasons vets (and human doctors) recommend probiotics after antibiotics. Attempting to mitigate this damage in the first place is why vets often give a “gut protectant” like omeprazole alongside steroids. It doesn’t always work.  

Why does detox produce mucousy dog poop? 

In human medicine, natural health practitioners understand mucus in poop as the gut releasing a coating or plaque it had previously formed in an effort to protect itself from irritants. 

Those irritants might be from drugs or other ingested chemicals. Withdraw the toxins and the barrier is no longer needed. So, in a sense, the mucus-wrapped poops should have been cause for celebration. 

It was a sign my dog’s body was beginning to shed the armor it had donned in response to all those medications assaulting the stomach and intestines. So you can understand why giving a drug to “treat” mucus in the poop would have been entirely misguided.

When you might see mucus in dog poop

Anecdotally, other dog owners (in a range of dog groups I’m part of) have observed mucus in dog stool:

  • after discontinuing a course of medication (as in my dog’s case) 
  • after a dog’s nutrition is improved, say from a highly processed kibble diet to raw, fresh food
  • as a dog’s body recovers from exposure to toxins in chemical wormers/flea and tick treatments or vaccines

… or quite often some combination of all of the above.  

So the first thing to ask if you notice unusually large amounts of mucus in your dog’s poop is: has your dog recently gone through any of these changes? If you think it’s detox, support your dog’s healing with proper feeding and minimize his exposure to drugs and environmental toxins. 

The mucus will abate on its own.

Other signs of detox (healing)

Once I recognized the mucus as a detox event, I connected it with a bunch of other symptoms that had been occurring at roughly the same time. 

Dog's ear showing fur loss due to detox after prednisone
Threadbare teddybear. This is what Shiva’s ears looked like for a few weeks after discontinuing prednisone and antibiotics.

These included:

  • gunky/itchy ears
  • paw cysts between the toes
  • general itching
  • itchy chin (so itchy he drew blood scratching it)
  • eye discharge
  • a slight bit of blood in the urine, briefly (While it presented similarly to a urinary tract infection, this was inflammation, not infection. The logic here is this: as toxins release and are expelled through the kidneys, they can cause irritation of the urinary tract. This happens in a similar fashion to how irritation of the bowel produces traces of blood in dog poop.)
  • black heads (comedones) on the belly and elsewhere 
  • red spots of irritated skin  (The skin is recognized as a common secondary avenue of elimination for toxins when the primary avenues like kidneys and gut are temporarily overburdened, as during detox.)
  • shedding a heap of hair, to the point that my dog’s coat became noticeably threadbare in parts. (Shiva’s ears were moth-eaten like a kid’s teddybear. This, too, passed quickly and the hair grew back in.)

Is this scientific?

Modern, allopathic medicine regards ‘detoxification diets’ as bogus because of a lack of rigorous scientific studies.

But fad diets are not what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about supporting the body’s own naturally-occurring processes of cellular repair, regeneration and healing.

These processes involve the expulsion of waste products through the body’s normal avenues of elimination. In dogs, as in humans, toxins are expelled via organs including the liver, bowels, kidney and skin.

It’s this same process of detox and renewal that constantly replaces cells. Take the gut epithelium in the human body, for instance. Under assault by digestive acid, this lining is renewed every few days.

To take another example, skin is sloughed off and renewed every 2-4 weeks.

This ongoing process of renewal is what makes healing possible — after you’ve removed the cause.

Science catching up with nature

There is increasing recognition within the medical establishment that fasting promotes detox and healing. Check out this 2010 study that says:

“Food restriction is a simple, reliable, inexpensive and harmless alternative to drug ingestion and, therefore, we propose that short-term food restriction may represent an attractive alternative to the prophylaxis and treatment of diseases in which candidate drugs are currently being sought.”

… which is a jargon-y way of saying fasting makes a great alternative to drugs — both to prevent ill-health and to reverse disease.

Managing detox

Those who believe in fasting dogs as a way to prevent and heal disease say fasting accelerates detox, as does fruit.

Fruit is a secondary food source for dogs. Wolves in the wild are ‘facultative’ carnivores, which means they prefer meat but can maintain themselves on fruit when prey is scarce.

So, when I want to move through a detox symptom like mucousy dog’s poop faster, I incorporate some fast days or some fruit-only days in between his meat days.

Meat digestion involves emulsification of fats and the breakdown of protein, both energy-intensive processes. By fasting or feeding fruit, which is easy to digest, you free up energy.

The body can then direct this energy to healing and cellular repair, as happens every night during sleep.

On the other hand, if I want to slow detox to control symptoms that are too intense, feeding a higher meat rotation achieves that by diverting energy from healing back to digestive tasks.

My dog has mucousy diarrhea: What to do

A dog that has diarrhea might be experiencing something different to simple detox.

Diarrhea is generally accompanied by an urgent need to poop. What I’m talking about here are normal bowel habits, with relatively well-formed poops but ones that contain a lot of mucus.

The two things can overlap. That is, dog diarrhea with mucus can happen, but it’s important to keep in mind that the causes for dog diarrhea are many and varied and include a range of things much more worrying than detox.

In conclusion

If your dog is experiencing mucousy poops, don’t panic. Consider detox among the possible causes. Give it a little time to resolve on its own before jumping to administer drugs.

Please note: What’s described in this article is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. This is me documenting my own direct experience with my dog and my learnings along the way. 

Is Your Dog Drug Damaged?

You and your dog survived the disease ..and its treatment. Now it’s time to complete the recovery. Supercanine is your how-to guide for understanding how your dog got in this mess in the first place, and how to dig him out of it once and for all. Because none of us wants to pass this way again.

Cover of the book Supercanine by Jane Cowan

There is life on the other side of illness. You can get your dog there. This is what Shiva and I have done to heal the damage that 11 months of heavy duty drugs left us with. No more vets. No more pills or potions. Just eight simple yet powerful ways you can tweak your dog’s care and see him come back to life.

57 thoughts on “Mucus In Dog’s Poop: When It’s A Good Sign”

    • This is such a great post – I completely agree. I took my dog off his flea treatment which had fipronil as the drug to kill the fleas. Fipronil kills fleas by attacking the central nervous system and it was doing the same to my dog. He was shaking and twitching, chattering and was distressed. I noticed that these symptoms got worse after I gave him the spot on flea treatment and then he got better towards the end. I stopped it immediately, but as he has been on this treatment 8 years it will take time. I think Fipronil has caused my dog to have many central nervous system disorders. On speaking to my vet he told me that he was aware the this drug can cause death in border collies???? My friend who has a jack russell (my dog is a Jack) also had the same problems.

      • I just read this article! It eased my mind. Very informative.
        My dog, 1 year old, pit beagle mix, has had a lot of stress this week and changed to a new dog food, human grade, and passed mucus poop yesterday and today.
        Now, after reading this article I’ll keep a close eye on it to see if it improves.

        • I’m glad to hear it. Yes, mucus is definitely something that happens as the internal conditions of the body improve and it can clean house. Human grade is a step in the right direction. If you want to keep the improvement going, you might like to consider progressing your pit beagle (sounds like a great mix!) to a fresh, raw diet.

  1. This is a really well thought out post. My dog has mucus wrapped poop after a really harsh antibiotic treatment during an illness.

    I give her peeled raw carrot with some vinegar and coconut oil to help keep gut transit normal. She swallows it whole and it comes out the other end largely undigested, which is ideal as the carrot fibre acts as a massage for the gut and clears out and soaks up excess bile and debris. I started giving it to her after noticing how she would want to eat grass and it seems like a good substitute for the same purpose.

  2. My guy is on prednisone and just started having some mucus in his poop
    At first diarrhea and now form but mucus too. Can I give him rice with pumpkin and chicken? To help

    • Diarrhea is a very common result of prednisone as the drug is very rough on the gut. Rice is no good for dogs, though chicken and rice is commonly recommended. Pumpkin is more worthwhile. It’s best not to feed a dog with diarrhea but to fast for at least 24 hours if there’s digestive upset. However if you’re giving prednisone that’s difficult because you need to give the drug with food to protect the gut at least somewhat. I would be more inclined to feed banana, which soothes the stomach and is easy to digest as well as packed with nutrients. Make sure to feed it overripe, with lots of brown spots on the skin. Are you able to wean off the prednisone soon? That is the ultimate answer because the drug will keep doing damage as long as your pup is on it. You might find this piece useful.

  3. This was a good informative article to read. Thank you. How long after a dog was on rx (flagyl) do the mucus poops show up ? Days later ? My dog was on it for 7 days all good finished all good for 5 days then mucus showed up again. But I will wait and hope fully this will resolve. we have 2 dogs who basically eat the same thing, but only 1 dog has the issue.

    • Hi Kathy, my dog was never on Flagyl but he was on high dose prednisone and multiple rounds of other antibiotics for 11 months. The mucus only appeared in the poop when the drugs were stopped. So that makes sense to me that the mucus would show up after you stopped the Flagyl, and in a delayed fashion. Many owners observe exactly this after discontinuing all kinds of medication. It might stick around for a few weeks and then clear. Ours has also come back briefly, almost a year after discontinuing all drugs, for just a few days this time. So you may see it come and go as the body reaches deeper levels of healing. The main thing is to remember that the mucus can actually be a good sign in that the body is shedding the protective barrier it needed against the drugs, and that it’s an indication healing is underway. The key is not to medicate for it, because that just sets the whole process back. Let us know how you go?

  4. Hi,
    My little Shih Tzu has gut problems. She is fussy what she eats and won’t take meds unless I can hide it sufficiently in treats or food. She is going through a time of mucus right now, and it seems to come when she gets worried or nervous about something. And another thing is that when we go for our walk, she hunts for good green grass and will lay down and happily munch away. Is she missing something in her diet or is she sick? She always seemed fine when she ate grass. Hope you can help me. Thanks! Jane

    • Hi Jane, it’s tricky to say without knowing your dog’s exact history and situation. Are you in the process of weaning off prednisone? If so, mucus in the poop would make sense as part of detox. There are different theories on what causes grass eating in dogs but I wouldn’t necessarily see it as a problem. The only thing I’d be wary of is if the grass is public grass, it may well have been sprayed with weedkillers etc, so I wouldn’t be letting her eat that.

  5. Finding your article has given me some hope! My border collie Chet has been on and off predisone and antibiotics for months after suffering an odd case of pneumonia (cause still unknown). Now that he is off the meds I have noticed his poop is covered in mucous – practically encased in it! Vet prescribed more metronidazole (no luck) but now I am hoping that we let nature run it’s course and support his gut with some quality fibre and probiotics. Might even try a bone broth?
    Hoping the natural way is best and he can go on being his happy self! (And I can stop stressing!!)

    • So glad you found the article, Tayla. It was a revelation when I discovered this information too, and has allowed me to make much more sense of what goes on with my dog’s body. Metronidazole will only suppress the issue and have it come out again later, while adding to the toxic load on Chet’s body and exposing him to side effects, which can be quite nasty with that drug. If detox is underway and the mucus being shed, I’d be celebrating that. Encased is the right word. Ours was absolutely like that. If you’re not feeding one already, a fresh, raw diet will help build your pup back to full health. That’s the path we took, rather than supplementation. For instance, a raw meaty bone in place of the bone broth would be my advice. A lamb neck would be perfect for a Border Collie, just be sure to remove all the fat you can from the outside. Including fast days here and there is also very supportive of healing. You might find this piece helpful on that front: A Way of Life for Wild Canines, This Could Be a Godsend for Your Dog

  6. My 14 week old golden retriever was having mucous in his poop and the vet prescribed 10 days of flagyl and said if it comes back after the 10 days to get a refill as some issues will take a longer dose of antibiotics. Anyways pups been on flagyl for 20 days and been off for a few and the mucous is back. When he was having the mucous to begin with he would wake up multiple times a night to poop but once on the flagyl he would sleep through the night and poops were more regular. Now that he’s off and mucous is back he’s waking up again in the night. Is this common with detox?

    • Yes, all sorts of disturbances and oddities happen during detox. It’s unfortunate that vets respond to mucous in the poop by medicating. As you’re experiencing, it just sets the whole process back because then your dog has to detox not only from the original thing that caused the first mucus, but now the additional load of the drugs themselves. A vet tried to give us Flagyl too. Instead, we just continued properly feeding and staying hydrated and the mucus passed on its own in a few weeks. The waking up during the night would make sense as the body just working to expel the toxins as quickly as possible. The disruption won’t last too long if you can hang in there. Please let us know how you’re faring in a few weeks? 14 weeks is good and young so your pup is well positioned to heal quickly.

  7. Hi! What a fantastic article! I have a 12 week old goldendoodle. Within our first night of bringing him home he had a problem with loose stool (borderline diarrhea). I chalked it up to the breeders because the food they were feeding him was poor. We spent a few weeks figuring out what would be the best kibble to feed him, doodles have such sensitive tummy’s so it took a minute to discover what he liked to eat + what would firm up his poops…. when discussing my concerns with my vet, they recommended that I start him on antibiotics, but I kindly declined. He wasn’t showing any signs of an unhealthy pup, he was still extremely playful, eating normally, and drinking plenty of water, so instead of antibiotics I asked for another option. I asked them if they could advise me on which foods might be a little richer in fiber to help with his stools. They decided to give me an RX for the purina pro plan veterinary diet and WOW! The difference it immediately made. His poops started to firm up within 12 hours of his initial intake. So that problem was solved, but then I recently noticed that he has been having excessive amounts of mucus expelling with his poops. Very similar to the images you showed, but in puppy form lol. It isn’t for all of his poops either, he will have 90% firm healthy poops a day, but the rest will have this mucus-y blob encasing. Do you think it could be because he is now on a healthier diet so his body is adjusting? Could you advise, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter

  8. That’s great your pup’s diarrhea is gone and well done for knowing antibiotics were not the answer. Mucus can be due to many things, but I think there’s a fair chance it indicates a kind of detox from the previous food. It can also be a detox from vaccines and worming chemicals in a young pup, if those drugs have recently been given. You may not like my advice re the food, because I’m going to tell you all kibble is a bad idea. While switching between brands might have improved things for now, often that’s because the particular mistakes of one kibble are relieved by switching to another, which doesn’t make those exact mistakes but has other problems of its own. Often what you’ll see is a temporary improvement, but issues later return. Even if all appears well, because a young pup can weather a lot, kibble will inevitably be sowing the seeds of problems down the line. Once I learned what was in kibble and how it’s made, compared to what a natural canine diet is, I never fed it again. Have you considered feeding fresh, real food? A dog’s body is designed to consume a raw meaty bone-based diet. Your pup is so young that you have a wonderful chance to begin proper feeding and set him up for a health, lifelong. If you feed this way, I predict you’ll find that doodles don’t have sensitive stomachs (the same thing is said about Boxer, which is my breed) .. rather, most of them are reacting to highly processed diets ie kibble. This piece will give you an idea how easy it can be to feed a natural diet to your pup: Give Your Dog A Bone by Dr Ian Billinghurst is also well worth a read. Hope that helps!

  9. Food for thought here 👍. I spend alot of time assessing my whippet’s poop as he has idiopathic IBD and we have had some really hard times in the past.
    I’m finding at the moment that every time I worm my dogs they get mucousy looser stool afterward even though 2 of the 3 whippets have no gut issues 🤔

    • Hi Krystel, my immediate thought would be that’s classic case of mucus as a sign of detox. I would say your whippets’ bodies are detoxing from the chemical wormer drug. Do they actually have worms or why are you needing to use a chemical wormer at all? You can avoid the toxic exposure for your dogs by instead testing a poop sample to get a fecal egg count to make sure they actually have worms, rather than automatically giving them the deworming chemicals, which they very well may not need. Despite the marketing, intestinal dewormers don’t actually “prevent” worms but only kill them IF THEY’RE THERE. In other words, if your dogs don’t actually have worms then it’s all risk (of adverse drug reactions and increased toxic load on the body) for no benefit.

  10. My 4 month old sheepadoodle has been having diarrhea for about 3 days now. Today was the first day we saw mucous encasing her stool. She has not been on any medications or had any vaccinations recently, it has been about a month since her last vaccination. Do you think this is just a normal detox? I honestly do not really trust our vet anymore because every time we take our 4 year old goldendoodle for diarrhea they just prescribe a whole bunch of drugs. I don’t think she ever really had a problem after I read your article, I think we were just making it worse by giving her all of those medications. Should we take the puppy to the vet or do you think we should wait it out on a bland diet for a couple days? Thank you!

    • Hi Julie

      I would say there’s quite a good chance both the diarrhea and the mucus are related to detoxing from the vaccines. It can takes months and even years to detox from them, especially if there’s been multiple vaccines in the one injection and a series of shots as is typical with puppies, (despite the fact that only one vaccine is needed if it’s given at the right time, after maternal antibodies have waned). There’s a lot more on this in the book we’re about to launch — if you’re interested I can let you when it’s live. You could titer to establish whether she already has immunity, instead of automatically putting her through more vaccinations, particularly since she is showing signs of having an adverse vaccine reaction (these can be quite delayed).

      With an adult dog for diarrhea I would absolutely say the fastest way to resolve it is to fast for 24 hours after the diarrhea has stopped and then begin refeeding with a smaller meal than usual. Definitely never feed a dog with stomach upset. Reason being, diarrhea (or vomiting) is the body’s mechanism for rapidly emptying the gut of its contents and by refilling the gut with more food you work in opposition to the body’s efforts.

      In terms of what might be going on.. When the liver detoxifies the blood, one way it gets rid of toxins is by dumping them into bile. That bile is then secreted into the intestine in response to the presence of fats after a meal. The bile helps digest the fat and the toxins that the liver cleverly piggybacked along with it are eventually pooped out. I think it’s quite possible these toxins cause irritation in the bowels. In response it’s reasonable to think the body might flood the bowels with fluid to prompt an urgent bowel motion, to quickly expel the irritants. If you let the diarrhea run its course and give the gut some digestive rest, things usually resolve quite quickly.

      With a pup I’m not sure how long it’s possible to fast. I’d be more inclined to try 12-24 hours and see how she is. Hopefully the diarrhea will have stopped by then. How is she at the moment?

      • Thank you so much! We will absolutely try the fasting for her. She has had 2 more diarrheas today but there was not a lot of mucous. There is definitely still some present, but it is not encasing her stool anymore. She is not lethargic or extra sleepy, and she still is full of energy. We still take her outside and she loves to run around the backyard. I forgot to mention in my earlier comment, but both of our pups enjoy chowing down on mulch any time they can. We try to catch it but sometimes they are just too fast for us. Our little one has thrown up and has had diarrhea before from eating the mulch. Do you think it might be that this time too? Our only concern this time is that the diarrhea is lasting longer than usual and we have not seen any mulch in her recent stools.

        • Here’s a link to the book I mentioned, in case it’s useful.

          I’m not sure about the mulch. Whether it’s a problem or not probably depends on the ingredients? If it’s a commercially made one I’d be concerned about chemicals in it and would discourage eating it. Definitely don’t want them consuming anything that could be indigestible and prone to creating blockages, either. If it’s a natural mulch you’ve made yourself, less of a worry on the chemical front. Very good sign she’s full of energy and behaving normally. Hopefully the diarrhea has now cleared as some time has passed?

          • Yes, the diarrhea has passed and she is doing well now! We have really been trying to teach her not to eat the mulch and she has been doing so much better. Thank you so much again! Reading your blog has really made me feel reassured through this whole process.

  11. I’m so excited to have found this article. My poor pup has been on metoclopramide and Ziatac tablets for almost a year. It began with her having a squeaky tummy then severe vomiting with blood and diarrhoea. Advised she had Pancreatitus. This then changed to “slow motility” (despite her 3 poos a day?!) diagnosis after a few weeks and a VERY expensive scan. She has been up-and-down ever since. Tried cutting down tablets and nothing seem to change. She was prescribed diet food which later I changed to Chappy.
    THEN She herself chose not to eat for 24 hours at the beginning of this week. I decided to offer her some alternative dry biscuit alongside her usual wet food concerned that she needed to eat but something told me not to give her more tablets to see what happened. It’s been four days since she detoxed and she has more life in her than she has had in a long time. Eating all her meals and drinking lots of water. Sought online advice after finding a heavily mucus poo this morning but seems from your information this is a really positive step. Think I will continue without medication to see what happens. Thank you Jane!

    • Hi Debbie

      I’m so glad you found the info at the right time!

      If she’s been on the drugs for a year, you may see some more detox come and go but at least now you know what it is.

      (If you’re interested in optimizing her diet to address the pancreatitis diagnosis, check out the book, link above the comments. For the next few days you can grab it for free as part of the launch promotion on kindle.)

  12. Hi. My 9 months old golden retriever is not under any medication, I only give him liv52 and dygiton occasionally for good digestion and liver. His poop is covered in mucus since 3-4 days. Kindly help.

    • Hi Shoumi

      When you say not on any medication, does your pup receive chemical wormers or flea/tick preventives? Or has he had puppy vaccinations? All of these toxins, as well as environmental toxins like chemical cleaners, scented plugins in the home, deodorizers and weedkillers etc create a toxic load that the body has to detox from and could be what you’re seeing.

      If pup is otherwise behaving normally, I would not worry — it should pass on its own. Ours took about 5 weeks on and off to clear completely.

      If you haven’t already, now could be a good time to optimize the diet to a fresh, natural canine diet. Kibble contains a lot of extraneous and undesirable ingredients that your dog also then has to detox out.

  13. Hi
    I am so so relief and happy see your article!!! My Golden Retriever just had horrible white mucus in his poop all day and I was so so worried about it. Just because yesterday he took his monthly worm prevention pill!!! But he has no problem before only this time…maybe because he is growing something can change. But this time is totally different… white large amount of mucus in his poop, not bad diarrhea just mucus covered soft stool but more often than before, he went to bathroom 4 times! After reading your article, I think he is trying to pass that drug as soon as possible, he still happy playful, nothing wrong. Now I can relief myself a lot! Thanks thanks thanks so so much!

    • I’m so glad to hear this Rebecca! Great news and good on you for making the connection between the symptom and its cause.

      Did your Golden have worms, is that why you gave the wormer?

      I used to automatically worm and I believe the accumulated toxicity from chemical wormers is part of what caused my dog to eventually get sick. It’s a very good thing that your dog’s body is working to excrete the toxin rather than store it so that it builds up over time.

      As I’ve learned, it’s not necessary to give wormers unless there’s an issue. Though they’re called preventives, they only kill worms if they’re there. So unless your dog has worms, it’s exposure to internal insecticides for no reason. You can do a poop test if you see signs of worms and then worm only if necessary. (There’s a whole chapter on non-toxic parasite control in Supercanine if you’re interested. Most pet dogs actually have very little exposure to contracting worms and a healthy dog fed a fresh, natural canine diet can often expel worms on his own.

  14. Hi,
    My dog is on cefpodoxime procetil she has a kidney infection so the vet prescribe cefpodoxime procetil. I noticed she still drinking a lot of water and just a couple days ago her poop was cover with a bit of mucus and her poop looks exactly like the pictures you presented, everyday she goes outside to the yard she’s eating grass. The vet prescribed my dog to take half a pill a day until gone. She known for having UTI please help

  15. Hello! it is very hopeful to read this article, so thank you for sharing. My 9 month old dachshund had a lot of allergies mainly in her skin which made her very itchy, so I was recommended to start her on vitamins so I got her some at the pet store that seemed very natural and multifunctional. Ever since she started them she’s been having occasional softer poops which didn’t worry me cause I had just introduced a new supplement to her body; I thought it was just that, but today I noticed a lot of mucus like in the pictures but still with softer poops. I wanna think the supplement helped her detox although she’s never really been on antibiotics. My question is wether I should stop using the supplements or continue them. Thank you again

    • Hi Ingrid, I’m glad the article was helpful.

      Rather than supplements, I would be looking to optimize the diet and provide nutrition in whole food form rather than as synthetic vitamins. The body can make much better use of vitamins and minerals when they are complexed in real food, instead of as isolated chemistry.

      The vitamins could certainly be affecting the poop.

      Remember detox can be as a result of many chemical exposures, not just antibiotics. Has your dog ingested chemical worming products or flea/tick treatments, had vaccines? Eats kibble? All of these are sources of toxins that the body has to then filter out and excrete. The more you can eliminate as inputs, the lighter the load on the body.

      Itchiness can be a sign of overwashing (mention it in case it’s a factor – you shouldn’t bathe your pup more than about four times a year as it strips oils and can make the skin prone to microfissures, tiny cracks which can produce itch) but it can also be a sign the body is using the skin to push out waste/toxins because the primary eliminative avenues (bowels and kidneys i.e. poop and pee) are overwhelmed. This is why the skin is called the “third kidney”. Itchiness can also be a sign of overfeeding or fat overconsumption, which is common in kibble fed dogs.

      For itchiness or any other “allergy” diagnosis, I would be looking to identify the cause so you can remove that, rather than have to mask symptoms with drugs or any other additions, which all bring their own side effects. This article relates to allergies in Boxers, but the principles all apply equally to any breed and might help you think through what could be triggering the issue in your girl’s case.

      Especially in such a young dog, you can almost always fix this by feeding a fresh, natural, biologically-appropriate canine diet. Again, it’s written for Boxers but I created a free Raw Feeding eCourse that may be useful if you want to get started.

  16. Hi, thank you for the well described article. It was so informative with the added pics that I had to go out and compare with my Oreo’s. My dog had severe pain and nausea (randomly dig holes and walk in the garden confused) which the vet diagnosed as inflamed gall bladder and pancreas. He prescribed Ursotan and Omeprazole. It’s been 5 days and Oreo seems to be recovering well. But I sometimes notice that his stool is runny and other times brownish with mucus. He has also changed his diet to Digestive care (Low Fat). Could this be a symptom of detoxing?

    • Hi Elizabeth — You’re most welcome. I’m sorry you and Oreo are going through this.

      I’d be almost certain the abnormalities in the poop are from the drugs.

      My dog’s poop was worse on Omeprazole which is supposed to be a stomach protectant — I’m assuming that’s why you were given it? In our case it was supposed to offset the damage prednisone would do to his gut. It actually made things worse.

      You might try stopping it to see if that helps.

      Even more importantly, I would be looking to optimize the diet by feeding a fresh, natural canine diet i.e. real, raw food rather than highly processed kibble/canned which bears little resemblance to what dogs’ bodies are designed to eat and may even have a fair bit to do with the genesis of the gall bladder/pancreatic problem in the first place.

      Have you considered raw feeding? Many, many owners see their dogs’ health transform.

  17. Great article- our lab pup had giardia and just finished two rounds of antibiotics. Each time he comes off the metro we have 2-3 days and then diarrhea starts and we are outside every hour with it. He’s been on pro-biotic through the treatment and after but doesn’t seem to be helping. He’s negative for giardia now but still with the diarrhea with mucus. Should we fast? He’s a starving puppy with a history of food aggression so a little worried about withholding so was thinking of trying just the fruit?

    • Hi Sarah — I’m glad the article was helpful. Sorry to hear you’re going through this with your pup. What you’re seeing is almost certainly due to the drug and will pass.

      How old is he? You wouldn’t fast a very young pup but if he’s more than 12 months — which he might be if he’s got a history of food aggression? — it may be more of an option.

      Yes, fruit would be another option. Make sure if you feed watermelon (or any other melon) you feed it alone, as it digests much faster than everything else.

      I would also be using this as an opportunity to optimize the diet i.e. get off kibble and any processed treats etc if they’re in the mix, as it won’t be helping the gut, or overall health. Let me know if you need help with transitioning to a fresh, natural canine diet.

  18. Hi thanks for your reply- hes 10 months old. He’s a rescue who had his food stolen as a puppy so it’s more of a resource guarding specific to his bowl so we scatter feed him and this works great. I did pumpkin, banana and s-boulardii for his dinner lastnight and breakfast, he seems to be solidifying his bowels a bit more. I am going to try some skinless boiled potato and chicken since it’s been 24 hrs on those. I definitely open to suggestions!

    • Hi Sarah

      I’m glad the fruit is helping. 12 hour fast is probably the longest I’d go on a 10 month old.

      I would use this as a chance to optimize the food to a fresh, natural canine diet rather than a cooked one. I have a course, designed for Boxers but obviously applies equally to all breeds, on how to transition to raw and how to properly feed it, if it’s helpful. It’s an eCourse that takes you through it step by step over 7 days. It’s free. Here’s the link if you’re interested.

      Raw, living food is critical to achieving proper gut health in dogs as cooked food is “dead” and devoid of the enzymes and beneficial bacteria that are needed to populate the gut and establish and maintain a healthy microbiome.

      The course includes the chance to ask daily questions as you go along.

  19. Hello
    Glad to find your article and hoping you can help us. We have been on a never ending cycle of metronidazole for months now. Our dog will start by having some mucus in his stool. The next time he poops it will be green stool with mucus. Next it will be green diarrhea with mucus. Then it will be bloody diarrhea until he just strains and strains and drops of blood come out. After he gets his first dose of metronidazole, the issue resolves and he will have good poops again. But once we finish the regimen, the mucus will be back in a few days and we go through the whole cycle again. He has tested negative for parasites, giardia. We cannot fast or give just fruit as he is diabetic. He is already on a bland diet or chicken, rice and veggies due to his diabetes. We’ve tried digestive enzymes, probiotics, prebiotics, Bernie’s Perfect Poop, gastroelm, pumpkin, psyllium husk powder but nothing works to stop the mucus and diarrhea except the metro. But we don’t want to have him on metro forever.

    • Hi Alberta

      I’m sorry to hear about your experience. This is a common pattern when antibiotics are given for diarrhea/mucus. The problem just returns whenever the drug is discontinued. Of course, the metronidazole increases toxic load on the body and gives it more and more to have to detox from, creating a higher likelihood of more mucus.

      You are right to not want to keep medicating.

      Without knowing your boy’s entire health situation it’s hard to give proper advice but based on what you’ve mentioned, if it was my dog, I would get him on a fresh, raw diet ASAP to support healing. It’s good he’s not eating kibble, and you obviously care a lot to be going to the trouble of home preparing his food.

      However, a dog is designed to consume raw meat. The power of the food to create optimal health is destroyed by cooking. Raw feeding is simple to do. The basics are to feed 3 components: 60% edible raw meaty bones like chicken carcasses/wings/necks + 40% lean muscle meat like lean diced beef, replacing 10% of the muscle meat with the third component, offal e.g. liver once or twice a week.

      Give 3-5% of your dog’s ideal weight in food.

      If your vet has you thinking raw feeding is not appropriate because your guy has diabetes, it may be helpful to seek out a holistically oriented vet.

      But, once you have optimized the diet, you can ride out the diarrhea and mucus and see it resolve once and for all.

      Hope that helps in some way,

  20. I have a 3-year-old mixed Australian Shepherd, we just moved to the Big Apple two months ago, (I had never had any problem with digestive problems), when I got here he entered a stage of depression (I still eating and doing normal poop) i got scared because I didn’t know if it was a health problem so I took him to the emergency vet, they told me that physically everything was fine that it was most likely depression due to the change of home and the climate change, which could be an allergy, they gave him an injection for the allergy and some drops for the eyes because he had them red, after the month everything was fine, he got used to his new home, but we had to move to a new apartment due to the floods, when he got to the new apartment he began to have diarrhea, he was still happy and eating normal , Everything was normal just the diarrhea that didn’t stop for 4 days and until I saw that the diarrhea was dark red that I decided to take him to the vet( i didn’t go sooner because he was happy and eating normal and had change his diet to blend food, chicken and rice), they told me that physically everything was fine, they gave him metronidazole and Maropitant in 2 days he returned to normal, i changed his diet to a much better food, I began to give probiotics and in less than 20 days he began to have little diarrhea, then I gave him his dewormer, he also started with mucus and only on one occasion with a little fresh blood, since that I gave him chicken with rice and an anti-diarrhea medicine again, after reading this amazing article I did not give him the medicine no more ( i only gave him the anti-diarrhea one time) and he returned to make normal poop in less than two days, but the mucus returned again, my question is if the mucus goes and returns after all this detox his been going though or maybe he has a disease in the intestine, (the dog continues the same happy and eating normal)

    • Hi Maria

      It’s normal for mucus to come and go, sometimes many times, during detox.

      Detox is a process that comes in waves, and starts and stops as the body’s internal conditions allow more or less housekeeping depending on what else is going on.

      The best thing you can do to complete the detox once and for all is to feed a fresh, natural canine diet i.e. a home prepared raw diet as outlined in detail in Supercanine.

      You will also want to avoid not only the pharmaceuticals but the chemical dewormers and flea/tick treatments and vaccinations which all increase the toxic load on the body, creating an endless backlog of material to detox from. All of this is also explained in the book.

      Let me know if I can help,

  21. Great article – thank you.

    My Cocker boy, 6 almost 7, has started having mucus in stools after I switched him to a fresh diet and cut out all chews and treats, even the apparently healthy ones (Whimzees, etc). He’s lost a bit of weight, as has been needed, has stacks of energy, and seems very happy. I suspect – and hope – that it’s just the gut clearing out what’s not no longer needed. I wonder if this is a familiar story for other dog owners who otherwise would rush to the vet.



    • Spot on, Sarah.

      The stomach sheds the mucoid plaque that it had previously build up in an effort to protect the gut lining from the assault that is kibble or other processed junk food.

      Very glad to hear the fresh, natural raw diet is working its magic in another dog.

      Well done for making the switch.

      If you’re interested in fully optimizing how you raw feed, you might find my free 7-Day eCourse on raw feeding useful. It’s written for Boxers, but all applies equally of course to any breed including Cocker Spaniels.


  22. Thank you. I’m wondering if some combination of this and GI upset is going on. 3 months ago, our girl was on 2 weeks of antibiotics, spayed, and then started having ME symptoms so her diet was changed abruptly to a prescription diet and she was given metoclopramide. At that point she started having diarrhea and mucusy poop. We the put her on 2 weeks of probiotics. That seemed to clear it up. After 4 weeks the ME was gone (temporary due to surgery) and we took her off the metoclopramide. The next two weeks we went away on weekend and the mucusy, diarrhea came back during each trip but we thought stress. A week after the last trip it came back again and we had no other reasons to explain it other than infection or diet but ruled out diet at the time due to prescription food so we put her on a week of Metronidazole and 2 week course of probiotics. She ended up having some mucusy poop at the end of her 2 week course of probiotics. We started slowly switching over her food to what she was eating before this and she has been having soft stools (has some shape) but occasionally mucus. I’m wondering if this is now just due to the diet change and coming off the meds. Me and the vet are at a loss because this was occasionally happening even with the prescription diet. There were no indications of this before her spay at 6 months.

    • Hi Kelly

      By ME do you mean mesenteric enteritis?

      I think it’s plausible that you do have several things going on including detox from the various meds which can take some time and come in waves.

      If she were mine, what I would do is get her on a fresh, species-appropriate diet i.e. raw as a matter of priority. Once you’ve made the transition and given it some time (it will likely trigger detox), you’ll be able to see if you actually have a problem. A lot of what’s going on could be a normal reaction to an inappropriate diet.

      The first hurdle to overcome is the notion that dog foods marketed as “prescription” and recommended or even sold by conventionally-trained vets necessarily represent good nutrition. Unfortunately these are still highly processed diets, and cause all the same problems for dogs as any brand of kibble or canned. Here is why kibble is sub-optimal food for dogs. The article is written for Boxer owners but all the same information obviously applies, regardless of breed.

      The main problem with commercially manufactured, shelf-stable dog food is that this food is cooked when a dog’s body is designed to consume raw muscle meat, bones and offal. Studies have shown all kinds of health problems arise when a species is denied its natural diet.

      Unfortunately, for a whole variety of reasons, many vets are inexperienced with raw feeding and even actively advise against feeding dogs the diet they’ve eaten for literally a million years of evolution, before convenience foods entered the picture.

      Those vets who’ve seen the results for themselves will tell you raw feeding heals a great many of the conditions afflicting the kibble-fed pet dog population. There is a raw feeding veterinary society and their position statement debunks many of the myths put out there about raw feeding.

      You might be interested in my 7 day eCourse that breaks down how to properly raw feed. Again it’s aimed at Boxers because that’s my breed, but all applies to all dogs. It’s free.

      Please let me know how you go and if I can help in any way.

      You will be delighted with the transformation in your dog.


  23. Hi Jane! Your article gave me a massive sense of relief and joy to know that my two little pups are just detoxing! I just switched them over from their kibble to a fresh food canine diet about 5 days ago and noticed today that both of their poops had a thick mucus casing around it like in the pictures. Both of my dogs are on simparica trio for flea and tick prevention. We live out in the woods and they constantly are coming inside with ticks latched on to their faces. Do you have a better alternative for tick and flea prevention? Or do you think Simparica Trio is something that my dogs should continue to take? And will my dogs continue to have the mucus poops if I continue to give them Simparica Trio once a month? Sorry for so many questions, thank you so much!!!!

    • Hi Miranda

      Thanks so much for your message and I’m glad the article helped make sense of things.

      Wonderful news that you’ve improved your pups’ diet.

      Chemical flea and tick treatments will certainly create a constant need for detox and have other problematic aspects.

      I don’t know which exact product you’re using but in 2018 and 2019 the US Food and Drug Administration issued alerts for flea and tick products containing the insecticide isoxazoline due to the potential for “neurologic adverse events” in dogs and cats. The FDA warned the products could induce seizures in animals without any prior history. None of them was removed from sale. The still-available products include many popular brand names, like: Bravecto (both oral and topical), Nexgard, Simparica and Credelio.

      There are more than 19 000 members in a Facebook group formed to connect owners whose dogs have gotten sick or died after using such products. Search for the brand names to find it.

      I know it’s an uneasy balance when you’re in a tick-heavy area. A raw diet will definitely help as optimally healthy dogs tend to be less of a target for parasites of all kinds and more resistant to disease.

      If it were me, I would do all I could to manage the risk of ticks with non toxic means. You could take a look somewhere like Dogs Naturally Magazine to see what they recommend in terms of natural sprays for the coat that may help repel ticks.

      Can you control the dogs’ exposure to the wooded areas and inspect their coats to remove ticks immediately? If the pups are constantly coming in with ticks attached, that would suggest the drugs are not working anyway, right?

      Hope this gives you something to go on,

  24. It’s very interesting and a relief. My dog is 11 years old and she had gastroenteritis a couple of weeks ago. She keeps having the runs and vomiting. To the point where her runs and vomit were getting a little bit bloody. My family and I took her to the vet and did some tests. They told me it could possibly be pancreatitis, but when she was discharged her paperwork said it was gastroenteritis. They even prescribed her some probiotics too. We did feed her bland foods, but she couldn’t keep it down except for the boiled chicken.

    I was a desperate dog parent wanting her to eat. One day on Sunday she stopped throwing up, but still had watery stools. So I did some research and the brand “Just Food for Dogs” was the first suggestion to help my dog with gastroenteritis. I took the test to see which food would help her issues. It suggested to feed her venison with squash. I bought it and fed her. The next night, she slept through without waking me up to use the restroom. In the morning, her stool was starting to form normally. Anyway, I’ve been feeding her the Just food for dogs since then and there was no issues. Except, I noticed she was pooping some mucus-jelly like stuff. Sometimes it would be with the stool. I was concerned again and was doing some research. Some suggested that if it doesn’t stop I have to call her vet. Until I found this article about my dog’s situation. Thank goodness it’s not a health issue. I do appreciate it so much.

    • Hi Viviana

      Congratulations on improving your dog’s diet and yes, mucus really can be a good sign if it occurs after giving kibble or other processed dog food the flick.

      Well done!


  25. Thanks for the article! I was so worried there’s something wrong with my dog!

    My 5lb rescued poodle pooped a big blob of mucus about 2+ weeks in after being fully on fresh cooked food – he wasn’t vomiting so that’s a relief. It’s been more than a week after that mucus poop, and 2 days ago he pooped a smaller blob of mucus, which was then followed by drips of watery diarrhea. Is this normal? His poop is still soft-ish and slightly slimy.

    A year ago when he was rescued, he was given by the vet cyclosporine for atopic dermatitis and levothyroxin for hypothyroidism. He was on the meds for 8 months and I stopped his medication when that batch finished, so he’s been off them for 4-5 months now. I was worried how medications will affect him in the long run (vet guessed he’s 7-8 years old) but I also regret stopping them because he’s super itchy again and now has bald spots from the scratching. Should I have continued the medication? In his last vet visit he got a cytopoint injection that gave him only minor relief. Appointment with a new vet for check up and blood work is coming up next week. Right off the bat he says it’s allergy and suggested an allergy test. I’m pretty sure the vet will want to do the jab again plus medication of some sort. I hope I don’t have to but I’m at a lost how to help my doggo with the itch.

    • Hi Sandy,

      I’m sorry your poodle is going through this.

      The mucus you describe fits with detox, yes. Diarrhea is also not uncommon as part of that process.

      Home prepared food is better than kibble but I would encourage you to feed raw, as cooked food is unnatural for dogs and may well be part of the problem. A diet based around raw meaty bones is the starting point for good health.

      Itchiness is one of the health problems commonly resolved with proper feeding of a raw diet.

      This article was written for Boxers, but all the same logic applies to poodles, or any breed of dog:

      7 Reasons For Itchy Skin In Dogs

      I am not a vet but this information might help you identify and remove the cause of the itch so you can remove it, rather than constantly masking symptoms with drugs, which create their own problems.

      Often what’s diagnosed as “allergies” is more a normal reaction to inappropriate diet and other inputs e.g. chemical wormers, flea/tick treatments, drugs, vaaccines etc.

      Best of luck,

  26. Hello,
    I am so glad I read this article. My Chiuahua who is 3 years old came down quickly with front paw pain, to her back hind legs not functioning properly. She would shake when she tried to stand, would not go up or down stairs and cried out when she needed me to feed her or take her outside to relieve herself. She even yelped when we tried to pick her up near her belly or legs. Took her to our Vets office, they said Pancreatitis and Erlichea positive test results. gave us anti-nausea meds and Gabapentin and Tramadol for pain. Chicken and carrots for diet. Two weeks went by no difference. Took her to another Vets office he treated her for Erlichea / lyme disease with 100mg. Doxycycline tablets once a day and Carprofen for pain for 7 days. A week later not very much improvement. Prednizone was given small dose per day, she has improved now she can stand on her own, go to get her food bowl on her own and can walk outside to relieve herself. She can now go down the stairs but is still hesitant to go up them. This morning Her poo looked heavy and mucus all around the stools. My question to you is should we stop the meds or continue treatment? She seems to be improving. We love her and want her to be healthy again and happy!!! Your article proved a very interesting read.

    • Hi Jennifer

      I’m sorry your dog is going through this.

      I don’t have direct knowledge of the conditions you’re dealing with, but I would certainly be exploring how to use the smallest possible dose of any drugs, for the shortest possible time.

      Prednisone is known as a double-edged sword of a drug, because it can appear to “fix” many things, while at the same time doing damage to the body that can be quite severe and long-lasting.

      If you haven’t already seen my article documenting how prednisone affected by 18mo Boxer, you might find it useful.

      In all cases, regardless of the specific disease, I would be looking to remove all possible toxic inputs including processed food like kibble, chemical wormers, flea/tick treatments, vaccines etc in order to support healing.

      Wishing you and your girl a strong recovery,


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