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Published: Apr 19, 2012

If your dog or cat has diarrhea, it may be indicative of a more serious issue. Pet owners should be on the lookout for any changes in their cat or dog's stool, as this clinical sign is common in a wide range of diseases.

According to VCA Animal Hospitals, it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly what the cause of diarrhea may be, as it is a common clinical sign for various maladies. This is why it's important that the pet owner gets their veterinarian involved. Although it may be unpleasant, pet owners need to pay close attention to the stool for discoloration, fluidity, frequency, presence of blood and mucus or more. These characteristics are important clues that the vet will need to make a diagnosis.

For example, diarrhea that contains small white strands typically indicates the presence of parasites or worms in the animal. Other possible causes of diarrhea include liver disease, kidney disease, bacterial infections, bowel inflammation, tumors, or the ingestion of certain drugs or toxins. Of course, it may also be a simple change in diet. The wide range of possible causes mean that this is simply not something pet owners can tackle on their own - bring the dog or cat to a veterinary clinic as soon as possible.