Understanding blood in dogs' stool

02/21/2012 | Seattle Times, The

Hematochezia, which appears as red blood in the stool, and melena, which is digested blood that makes stool appear dark and tarry, can be disconcerting when observed by dog owners. Hematochezia originates from the lower half of the gastrointestinal tract and is generally associated with mild disease, except in the case of hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, which can be severe, according to veterinarian Beth Guerra. Melena originates from the esophagus, stomach and upper portion of the intestines and generally causes more severe disease, Dr. Guerra notes.

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