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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16280
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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I have a German Shepard that is 18 months old. He's generally

Customer Question

I have a German Shepard that is 18 months old. He's generally very energetic, but the last 2-3 days he's been just laying around. He hasn't eaten anything in about 3 days and drinks very little.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.
Has your lad had any vomiting, retching, gagging, lip licking, or gulping?
Are his gums pink or pale/white? Moist or sticky?
If you press on his belly, does he have any discomfort, tenderness, or tensing?
Could he have eaten something he should not have (ie bones, toys, rocks, plants, chemicals, etc)?
Has he had any diarrhea?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He vomited this morning. Gums are pink and moist.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No diarrhea.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you,
First, I am glad to hear that he has pink gums, since that does make gt damaging foreign bodies and internal bleeding inducing issues less likely. As well,if he has vomited this morning, he has given you a clue to the trigger for his anorexia. Because nausea often will put dogs off their food (as they try to resist eating as to avoid vomiting). Furthermore, as the anorexia has persisted a few days, thus tapping his energy and hydration, these will cause him to become weak and lethargic.
With all this in mind, we do have a range of issues to consider for his nausea, GI upset and anorexia. Specifically, we can see these signs related to conditions of the GI but also conditions that affect the body as a whole. This includes bacterial infection, viral disease, pancreatitis, parasitic infestations, dietary indiscretions, and secondary to toxin and/or foreign material ingestion.
Now as long as foreign bodies and toxins are less likely here, then we can start some supportive care to see if we can break his fast. First off, to address the nausea inducing his anorexia, we can start by treating with an antacid. There are a number of antacids that are available over the counter and pet friendly. I would advise only treating with one, but the two I tend to recommend are:
* Pepcid (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/drug-library/famotidine-pepcid/page1.aspx#.VGJLgsn9XPg) or
* Zantac (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/drug-library/ranitidine-hcl-zantac/page1.aspx)
This medication of course shouldn’t be given without consulting your vet if he does have any pre-existing conditions or is on any other medications. Ideally, it should be given about 30 minutes before food to ease his upset stomach.
Once that is on board, you will want to try and see if you can get him eating (as you have). If he hasn’t been keen to have his favourites, then I would advise also trying to tempt him with a light/easily digestible diet. Examples of this would be rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, scrambled eggs (made with water and not milk), meat baby food (do avoid the ones with garlic powder in the ingredients) or there are also veterinary prescription diets that can be used in cases of gastroenteritis, notable Hill’s I/D or Royal Canin’s sensitivity.
On top off all of this, you do need to keep an eye on his water intake and hydration status. If possible, you do want to check his hydration now. To check this and make sure he is not becoming dehydrated there are a few things we can test at home. One is whether the eyes appear sunken, if the gums are tacky instead of wet/moist, and whether he has a "skin tent" when you lift the skin. To see how to check these parameters for dehydration, you can find a wee video on this HERE (http://www.ehow.com/video_12232503_dog-dehydrated.html). If you are seeing any signs of dehydration already, then you do want to have your wee one seen by the vet before this gets any further out of control.
Overall, when a dog has vomiting and anorexia, then this is a sign of something seriously amiss. The challenge is that it can mean a wide range of underlying issues. If your lad has already been off his food for this long, then we do want to see if we can get him back on his food as soon as possible. Therefore, I would advise the above. If you initiate these treatments and do not see improvement over the next 12-24 hours (sooner if he does vomit more, becomes bloated or is dehydrated already), then it would be prudent to get his vet involved so that they can make sure there is nothing sinister afoot. Depending on their findings, the vet will be able to cover him with antibiotics and anti-nausea/vomiting medication and appetite stimulating medications by injection to help settle his stomach and get him back on track as quick as possible.
I hope this information is helpful.
If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!
All the best,
Dr. B.
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I will try that. Ty for chatting with me.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
You are very welcome, my dear.
Take care & all the best,
Dr. B.
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