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I am sorry to hear about Hercules.
My primary concerns include:
- Dietary indiscretion (eating something you do not know about)
- Stomach or intestinal foreign body
- Something that was given to them (new food, new treat, human food)
- Intestinal parasitism (not just the worms, but the microscopic bugs like Giardia and Coccidia). They can cause vomiting also.
- Toxin exposure would be less likely, unless you have reason to suspect exposure to a chemical.
- Less commonly, endocrine diseases.
Absolutely, a fecal test should be performed.
Bring in a fresh poop sample to the veterinarian. Ideally, within a few hours. Request that it be sent "OUT" to the laboratory instead of being looked at in the hospital (more accurate that way). We are not interested in only worm eggs, but also checking for the very common microscopic bugs like giardia and coccidia. These types of parasites will not be cured with over-the-counter dewormers. Giardia can also be difficult to identify on routine fecal tests, so ask your vet if they always add a "giardia elisa" to the fecal test.
The vet can also prescribe medication like flagyl (metronidazole), an antibiotic with anti-inflammatory benefit in the intestinal tract, to get the bowels back on track.
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Well, if not straining to defecate, not vomiting, no blood in the loose stool, and eating/drinking fine, you can wait (certainly, get in sooner if the symptoms do change).
Pepto-bismol can help with diarrhea:
Pepto-Bismol (NOT TO BE USED IN CATS)
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