What Are These White Specks In Dog Poop?

The appearance of your dog’s stool can offer an incredible peek into their gastrointestinal health. It may seem gross to be on canine poop patrol, but it can be a proactive way to stay on top of your furry friend’s well being.

If you are suddenly seeing white specks in your dog’s poop, there are a few possible factors that you should consider. In this article we will dive into the details of white flecks in a dog’s stool, and discuss what this could mean for your canine companion.

Should White Specks Be Cause For Concern?

White Specks In Dog Poop

Sudden changes in the appearance of your dog’s stool should always be taken seriously.

While the cause of the white flecks in their stool may not be a medical emergency, it is always best to address any changes before they worsen.

If you are unable to explain away the new addition to their poop, we always suggest contacting your vet for further care.

Changes in their stool with the addition of any gastrointestinal symptoms should be even more of a priority. If you notice any diarrhea, vomiting, changes in appetite, or other abnormal symptoms, you should contact your veterinarian right away.

What Causes White Specks In Dog Poop?

If you are suddenly seeing white specks in your dog’s stool, you are likely scratching your head at what this could mean. A change in your dog’s poop appearance should always be taken seriously, making it important to get to the bottom of this occurrence! To help you determine what this could mean for your furry friend, let’s discuss the possible origin of these white flecks below.

Intestinal Parasites

Intestinal parasites are a common cause of white specks in a dog’s stool. Some worms can look like tiny grains of rice moving through your dog’s stool, while others may be long like noodles. This is the most concerning cause of change in stool appearance, as intestinal parasites can cause serious damage to a dog’s digestive tract. If your dog is not on monthly heartworm prevention, or was not dewormed as a puppy, you should always keep this possibility in mind.

Food Remnants

If the white specks in your dog’s stool are not moving, it may be due to undigested food remnants left behind in their stool. Some dogs have trouble digesting food products like rice and grains, leaving tiny white segments behind in their poop. This is also possible in dogs that are known to eat things they shouldn’t as these items may be challenging to digest as well. If your dog eats human food or is known to get into the trash, this may be the cause of their change in stool.

White Seeds

If you are seeing objects that look like white seeds in your dog’s poop, this is usually due to a few factors. These may be tapeworm segments, food remnants, or even seeds that your dog has managed to consume. The best way to get to the bottom of this is by looking for any movement in these objects, as movement would suggest that they are indeed parasites.

Fly Eggs

If you have noticed tiny specs in your dog’s poop after it has been sitting out for a few hours, it may be due to fly eggs. Flies tend to gravitate toward smelly items that are left outside, often laying eggs on these objects in the process. This has nothing to do with the overall health of your dog, and should not cause immediate concern.

However, we do suggest removing any stool from your yard that you believe contains fly eggs. If your dog or other animals happen to consume the stool, this can lead to serious gastrointestinal upset. If you want to avoid this risk all together, you can try to scoop your dog’s poop as soon as they go. 

Undigested Bone

Some white specks in a dog’s poop can be due to undigested bones in their food. It is possible for a dog food brand to contain tiny bits of bone in the kibble, some of which can be challenging for your dog to digest. If they are unable to digest the tiny bone pieces, this can lead to tiny white specks left behind in their poop. While these remnants of bone can be left behind in their poop, they don’t often pose any risk to your canine friend. If the white flecks in their stool are not moving, they may simply be undigested bone pieces.

Pieces Of Toys

Some dogs are known to shred their toys and pull out the stuffing. These tiny pieces of fabric or fuzz can pass through their digestive tract and be left behind in their stool. This may look like tiny white flecks in their poop, or even larger pieces of cotton or wool. If your dog is known to tear apart their plush toys, this may be the cause of their change in stool appearance.

How To Know If They Are Worms

First, it’s important to learn the most obvious way to determine if the white speck in your dog’s poop is indeed a worm or not. If it is moving, it is safe to say that your pup may be hosting a few intestinal critters. While not all worms will be passed in live form, you should be able to see some evidence of movement.

Finding a potential worm in your dog’s poop is always concerning. If you are unaware of what parasites look like and how they affect our pups, you may be searching for answers on how to help your furry friend. To help you better understand this unexpected find, let’s dive into the different worms you may find in your dog’s poop.

  • Tape worms: Tapeworms are an intestinal parasite that a dog acquires from ingesting an infected flea. Tapeworms are the most common culprit behind mysterious white flecks in a dog’s stool, as they look very similar to tiny grains of rice. Tapeworms are usually ¼ – ½ inch in length and can sometimes be difficult to see. You may see these critters moving around in your dog’s stool, or even hanging out in the fur around their back end.
  • Roundworms: Roundworms are an intestinal parasite that your dog gets from ingesting infected feces, digging in infected soil, or even from their mothers when they are in the womb. Roundworms tend to cause a dog more discomfort than tapeworms, as these worms will often pass in long, noodle-like form. Roundworms are known for causing severe gastrointestinal upset, and often present in diarrhea or loose stool.
  • Hookworms: Hookworms are an intestinal parasite that a dog can get from eating infected feces, digging in infected soil, or even from their mothers as a puppy. Hookworms look similar to roundworms, and often present in long, noodle-like form. These worms can not only cause severe gastrointestinal upset, but will also stick to the intestinal lining and feed on their host’s blood. These critters can cause a dog to become severely anemic, requiring life saving treatment if they are unaddressed for too long.

Other Intestinal Parasites

  • Coccidia: Coccidia is a protozoan that wreaks havoc on the digestive tract. You will not see any worms in your dog’s stool when they fall victim to this critter, but you will likely see signs of severe GI upset. Coccidia is known for causing severe diarrhea, vomiting, anorexia, weight loss, hypoglycemia, and more.
  • Whipworm: Whipworms are another intestinal parasite that you are not able to see with the naked eye. This parasite is generally acquired by eating infected soil, and causes severe GI upset such as diarrhea, vomiting, weight loss, and more.

How Do Dogs Get Worms?

Our canine friends can fall victim to intestinal parasites in a number of ways. Some of these worms are easy to transmit in multi-dog homes, while others require an insect vector for infection.

Some of the most common ways out dogs get worms include:

  • Eating infected stool
  • Having a current or previous flea infection
  • Digging in or consuming infected soil
  • From mother to puppy, in the womb or in contact with contaminated stool
  • Close grooming/living of infected housemates

Symptoms of Worms In Dogs

If you think your canine companion has worms, you may notice some other symptoms outside of the white specks in their stool. While not all parasites will cause other symptoms, your dog may experience some of the following:

  • Moving objects in their stool
  • Loose stool 
  • Frequent bowel movements
  • Diarrhea
  • Gurgling of the stomach
  • Vomiting
  • Increased gas
  • Change in appetite 
  • Potbelly appearance 
  • Abdominal discomfort
  • Weight loss

As we mentioned above, some intestinal parasites can lead to severe GI symptoms. If your dog is experiencing diarrhea, vomiting, anorexia, lethargy, pale gums, or weakness, we recommend contacting your vet as soon as possible.

If you do happen to see any crawling critters in your dog’s poop, we always suggest contacting your vet for further advice. Your vet will be able to perform a routine fecal test that searches for any parasite eggs, and will be able to prescribe the best treatment for their condition.

Treatment Options For White Specks In Dog Poop

If you have found white flecks in your dog’s stool, there are a few different treatment options based on the cause behind this occurrence. Getting to the bottom of their change in stool appearance is essential for offering the best treatment, and to prevent further complications in the future.

If you think the white specks in their poop is due to undigested bones, it may be time to consider a higher quality dog food. We suggest speaking with your vet about the best options, or doing independent research on well-known pet foods on the market.

If you think your dog has gotten into something they shouldn’t have, it’s best to work on limiting potential dangers throughout your home. This means removing any trash cans that are in reach, switching to toys they cannot destroy, or any other changes that benefit your pup. You should also keep a close eye out for any signs of vomiting or abdominal discomfort, as eating non-food items can lead to an intestinal obstruction.

If worms are the cause of your dog’s abnormal stool, we always suggest visiting your veterinarian for proper care. Your vet can perform a fecal test that searches for intestinal parasites, and can prescribe an effective medication that will banish their intestinal invaders. There is no way to know which intestinal parasites your pup has acquired without the use of a fecal test, so we do not suggest treating your dog at home.

There are a few potential culprits when it comes to white specks in a dog’s stool. Be sure to review the information that we discussed above to better understand your dogs poop.

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