Chicken and rice is commonly thought of as a healthy meal for dogs, and as an alternative to the regular dog food and raw meat diet that it might usually get.
However, this type of diet is mostly suitable for sick dogs with parasitic infections or canines with allergies to certain ingredients in common dog foods.
This is because the diet is so bland that it’s typically easy on a sick dog’s digestive system– allowing dogs with diarrhea to have regular poops while they recuperate from an ailment.
Having said that, after your dog has been on this diet for a prolonged period you may rightly ponder:
“Can chicken and rice make a dog constipated?”
The truth is that a chicken and rice diet shouldn’t be causing your dog to be constipated, especially if you’re feeding them the right recipe.
By this, we mean white rice and shredded white meat chicken (minus the bones) only. Brown rice tends to be harder to digest for dogs.
In this article, we’ll examine what could be causing your dog to become backed up and figure out whether or not chicken and rice is the culprit.
We’ll also provide a few natural remedies that can help your dog’s digestive system regain tip-top shape!
We’ve all been there: Your stomach hurts, but you just can’t seem to go when you’re in the bathroom. It’s infuriating!
Just like us, dogs can become constipated too.
If you’ve noticed your furry friend hasn’t pooped in a while, then this is probably the case.
While constipation in dogs is typically not a cause for concern on its own, you should try to solve the problem as quickly as possible to keep your dog’s digestive system moving.
The first thing you should do is consider what you’re feeding your dog to ensure it’s not the cause of their constipation.
We’ve already briefly answered the question, “Can chicken and rice make a dog constipated?” above, and while it isn’t common, it certainly is still possible if you’re feeding them the wrong recipe.
In reality, if you’re feeding rice and chicken to your dog, then it’s probably sick already (either from a parasitic infection or some other digestive condition), so the illness could also be the cause.
When a dog has diarrhea from an illness or digestive issue (or from eating rotten meat), a vet will usually advise you to fast them for 24 hours before switching to a chicken and rice diet.
This gives the intestines a chance to reset and recover with a bland diet that is easy on the poor pup’s stomach.
White rice is generally OK for dogs to consume and is typically digested well enough to avoid constipation.
However, brown rice can be hard for dogs to digest so constipation is a possibility.
Therefore if you’ve feeding your dog brown rice with chicken and you’re noticing they haven’t gone “Number 2” in a long period of time, you should make the switch to white rice immediately.
If this doesn’t solve the problem, rice should be eliminated completely from your dog’s diet.
If your dog is sick and having trouble pooping, and your vet has recommended a chicken and rice diet, then you’re probably wondering how long it will be until they start pooping regularly again.
The answer to this question is around 1-2 days after starting the diet itself. If your furry friend is still not pooping normally after a week of chicken and rice, you should definitely make a call to your vet.
If your dog isn’t having digestive issues or dealing with an infection, then rice and chicken isn’t usually something you need to feed them.
Even if your pooch was suffering from an illness that required a bland diet, the chicken and rice combo shouldn’t be your dog’s diet for too long.
No, rice and chicken should not be fed to your dog on a daily basis for too long. Why?
While this diet might be recommended by your vet for a period of time (typically when your dog has a digestive condition or illness), it does not contain all of the necessary nutrients dogs need.
These nutrients are typically found in other sources like vegetables and red meats. In addition, the more that a dog constantly stays on one type of food, the greater the likelihood of an allergy being developed.
All this is to say that the longer a dog only eats chicken and rice, the more probable that it eventually becomes allergic to both these ingredients!
The amount of time your dog is kept on a diet of chicken and rice will hinge on two different factors:
- Recommendations from your vet
- Whenever your dog to start pooping normally
You should always follow the recommendations and advice of your vet. With that said, you should begin to see your furry friend’s poop schedule return to normal in about 1-2 days.
If it’s been longer than a week, then you should schedule an appointment with your vet as soon as possible as it could be a sign of something more serious, or that your dog’s diet needs to be changed.
As mentioned in the last section, you should not feed your dog chicken and rice for an extended period of time because the dish (while healthy) doesn’t provide all the nutrients your pup needs.
If your dog is sick, however, with a parasitic infection or some other type of digestive illness, your vet might prescribe chicken and rice for a certain period of time.
This diet is easier to digest for your dog and will give them time to recover from whatever stomach ailment they’re suffering from.
The amount of rice and chicken you should be feeding your dog will depend heavily on your furry friend’s size and weight, respectively.
Keep in mind, your dog’s current diet should be set at the right calorie level for its size and weight.
Therefore, the amount of chicken and rice given to them should equate to the correct number of calories as well.
One cup of rice and chicken contains roughly 350-400 calories. The average dog needs approximately 30 calories/pound of body weight each day.
However, this will of course differ depending on the breed, age, and activity level of each pooch.
For instance, older dogs that (usually) are no longer as boisterous as their puppy compatriots will usually require less calories each day since their metabolism has slowed down considerably.
You might be looking for an alternative to chicken and rice for a number of reasons when your dog is sick.
You may be surprised to learn that chicken is actually one of the most common allergens for canines. This fact alone makes finding a better alternative for your best pal an attractive proposition.
After all, you don’t want to make your dog even more sick!
Additionally, if your dog is constipated already, you may want to find something other than chicken and rice.
Let’s explore some of the best alternatives below:
Is your dog not able to handle solid foods? Then you might want to consider bone broth as a healthy liquid alternative to satiate them until they’re ready for solids again.
Bone broth can also help when it comes to restoring a dog’s appetite. Here’s a simple recipe you can use to prepare bone broth:
- Gather bones- preferably with plenty of joints and cartilage– and put them into a large pot. Beef marrow bones and chicken legs do nicely.
- Top up the pot with water till the bones are covered by around 2-3 inches of liquid. Turn the heat to low and leave to simmer for approximately 24 hours.
- After a day has passed, remove the bones and pour the newly-brewed broth into a large bowl. Place the bowl into the fridge to cool. When keeping bone broth in the fridge it will congeal and turn into a jello-like substance.
- Once the broth has cooled, you’ll want to remove the layer of fat that will have inevitably risen to the top.
Whenever you’re ready to give the broth to your dog, scoop out and heat up a portion of it either on the stove or in the microwave. Once heated, it will revert to a liquid form. Always be sure that the broth is cool enough before serving it to your dog!
Whatever you do (and however your dog puppy-eyes you), NEVER give your dog the cooked bones that were used to make the broth!
When bones are cooked this way they have a tendency to become crisp and brittle, and can very easily break into razor-sharp segments.
Not only does this pose a significant danger to a canine’s throat and intestines, but the fragments can also quite easily cause and contribute to constipation– hurting the situation even more.
Giving your dog cooked bones may also result in them throwing up suspicious-looking, hard, white chunks.
A lot of dog owners choose baby food (made for humans) as an alternative to chicken and rice because it’s actually made to be easily digested.
This means you can feed it to your dog quite safely. You should, however, choose meat-based baby food.
Additionally, you should check the ingredients of the baby food to ensure there aren’t any unnecessarily added spices or seasonings.
One of the best alternatives to chicken and rice- and one I have used in the past for my sick dog- is pumpkin.
Plain, canned pumpkin paste is perfect not only for doggy digestive issues and diarrhea, but for constipation as well!
This is due to the fact that the vegetable has plenty of the right type of fiber that is needed to make sure a canine’s digestive system runs at an optimal level.
What’s more? It’s also packed with essential vitamins and minerals, including:
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
You can even add the pumpkin to a chicken and rice dish; simply adding two tablespoons of pumpkin puree should do the trick!
Just remember, avoid any seasonings when preparing pumpkin for your furry friend. Many of the seasonings humans consume, such as onion and garlic powder, are toxic to canines.
In my experience, when my corgi Gogi was constipated, I added just a little bit of pumpkin to his regular dog food and he was back to regular poops within a day.
Whole cans of pumpkin puree can be purchased at your local box or grocery store. Again, be sure to only buy plain pumpkin without any additives to avoid worsening your dog’s tummy issues!
There aren’t really any foods that cause constipation in dogs as a direct consequence. However, bones, bone meal, among other sources of calcium in a dog’s diet can certainly contribute to it.
Diet is indeed the biggest contributing factor. Poor or low fiber diets, dysfunctional digestive enzymes, and an inadequate dietary intake of liquids can all cause and worsen constipation in dogs.
With that said, more water doesn’t simply mean your dog won’t become dehydrated.
In fact, the main cause of constipation is the excessive absorption of water by the large intestine that is then recycled into the bloodstream.
Here are a few of the most common causes of constipation in canines:
If your dog is lacking sufficient fiber in its diet, the likelihood they will experience constipation is high.
Fiber is responsible for absorbing a large amount of water during the digestive process and combines with waste to create softer poops for your pup.
Without it, your dog will be prone to harder stools that are difficult to pass. Beyond preventing constipation, fiber is also effective at maintaining a healthy weight for your dog.
Dogs can become stressed, just like us humans. Unfortunately, stress in dogs can have a seriously negative impact on their physical health.
Stressful situations that can cause temporary constipation and other digestive issues include:
- Bringing home a new baby
- Moving into a new home
- Being traumatized or fearful of its environment or other factors (such as smoke detectors)
- Adding another dog to your family
- Constant yelling and arguing
While constipation brought on by stress usually doesn’t require medical treatment, it’s important to try and minimize or eliminate stressful situations from your dog’s life as much as possible.
If you’re buying your dog cheap, poor quality food from your local box store, this can lead to constipation.
It’s pretty surprising how many dog owners don’t understand how critical it is to choose the proper dog food for their furry friend.
Many of the most popular store-bought dog food brands are highly-processed and contain certain ingredients such as filler additives and grains that can lead to stomach upset and digestive issues.
If you’ve noticed your dog is experiencing digestive issues, it would be a good idea to take a close look at the dog food you’re feeding them.
Let’s face it, sometimes dogs eat things they simply shouldn’t. Unfortunately, most foreign objects a dog will eat aren’t meant to be ingested.
Some common foreign object that are not digestible- yet somehow enticing to canines– include:
These objects can get lodged in a dog’s small and large intestines and cause constipation. In extreme cases, the items may become so stuck that surgery is required to have them removed.
This is why you should always keep an eye on your dog at all times to ensure they aren’t eating things they shouldn’t be.
As we already covered above, dehydration is commonly linked to constipation- both in dogs and humans.
When a dog is dehydrated, it means that the colon is absorbing more fluid from the waste being passed through their intestines.
The result? Dry, hard, crumbly stools.
Keep in mind that you can only treat constipation by increasing water intake if the condition is actually caused by an inadequate supply of fresh drinking water.
If constipation is a result of other contributing factors, then simply drinking more water won’t be able to cure the condition.
Constipation can be a pretty common issue in dogs, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t a few different effective home remedies that you can try to help your dog feel better.
We’ve already talked about pumpkin earlier, but it really is an effective remedy for constipation and other digestive issues in dogs.
Pumpkin puree is high in fiber and moisture, and aids in regulating a dog’s digestive tract. Be sure to only feed your dog 100% pumpkin puree without any additives.
Dietary fiber supplements help to increase fiber in a dog’s body to, in turn, soften their stools and regulate their bowel movements.
Before giving any supplements to your dog, you should always speak with your vet.
They will be able to recommend the specific types of supplements you should buy and advise you on the proper dosages for your dog.
While low water intake is often overstated as a cause for constipation, it’s still a possibility.
In this case, ensuring your dog has access to fresh water and is properly hydrated throughout the day is a great way to prevent constipation and to treat the condition if it’s directly linked to a lack of adequate hydration.
Exercise isn’t only imperative for humans. It’s crucial to your dog’s health too- especially if your furry friend is constipated.
Simply taking your pal for a long walk around the block will help get their bowels moving.
You can also try running with your dog, playing fetch, or just let them chase you around the backyard.
All of these exercises are effective when it comes to promoting a healthy digestive system in dogs.
Dog food that comes in a can tends to be softer and contains a higher moisture content.
This will help to regulate a dog’s digestive tract and can allow for the production of softer stools that are easier to pass.
With that said, you should mix any canned food in with your dog’s regular dry food at first so that you avoid upsetting their stomach initially.
So, can chicken and rice make a dog constipated?
Usually, this bland combination of lean protein and boiled carbohydrates won’t cause much of a digestive issue in canines– let alone constipation.
(This is of course under the assumption that it is white rice that is being fed. Brown rice, on the other hand, has a harder time of being digested by canine stomachs.)
Indeed, chicken and rice is typically one of the go-to solutions recommended by vets when a pooch is experiencing some type of stomach upset or discomfort!
If your pup has been placed on a bland diet by the vet, you can expect it to be passing stools normally again within a few days.
However, just because it is a beneficial combo for allowing a dog’s digestive processes to recuperate and recover doesn’t mean that it is an appropriate long-term solution.
In fact, chicken and white rice don’t contain anywhere near the range of nutrients that are essential for a dog’s optimal health and wellbeing.
Therefore, a high-quality diet of either premium dog foods or fresh meat and vegetables should still be provided to your pup!
Heather Abraham is a professional blogger who owns two dogs, a cat, a parrot, and a leopard gecko. She has a connection with animals since she was a child. She shares her love for all pet breeds and provides information on pet food, toys, medications, beds, and everything else.
She is committed to learning about the internal workings of animals. Her work permits her to work closely with knowledgeable vets and obtain practical expertise in animal care. When she is not working, her love of animals continues in her writing. Her goal is to educate and uplift readers who also have a passion for animals through her writing.