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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19394
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)
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My friend has a 9 week old puppy that has been lethargic

Customer Question

Hi my friend has a 9 week old puppy that has been lethargic and not eating for 2 days. Today it has pale mucus membranes with CRT of about 2 seconds but still moist I heard what I can only describe a squeak on auscultation of lungs and a heart rate of 156bpm resp rate of 60. It's a Tenterfield terrier that at 4 days of age was very unwell and is even now still about half the size of its litter mates. I'm worried that the puppy is quite sick and that there maybe an element of fading puppy syndrome. She doesn't want to take it to the vet until tomorrow due to huge prices of after hours call out and I'm not confident to make a recommendation. (I'm a 5th year vet student). Im at a bit of a loss as to what to suggest - I have a bag of Hartmanns that I could give fluids sub cut but I think an important thing would be get it eating. I'm also at a bit of a loss of a differential diagnosis. None of the other puppies in the litter are sick.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I'm Dr Gary. I've been practicing veterinary medicine since 2007. I look forward to helping with your questions/ concerns.

I'm sorry to hear about this puppy. The pale look can be deceiving in puppies. They can have more of a pale look compared to older dogs. I'd pay more attention to the CRT than the actual color.

The lack of eating for 2 days is definitely concerning. If he's not vaccinated, then I'd worry about Parvo. If you could get some Hill's a/d, that would be great and you can syringe feed the puppy. I would figure out the RER and syringe feed 50% the first 12 hours then 24% following that. You can split it into feeding q 4 hours.

Sub Q fluids would also be ok. I usually go with 10 mL/lb every 12-24 hours, as needed.

As long as you're not seeing any coughing or nasal discharge, then we can probably rule out pneumonia. It sounds like it's probably something in the GI tract. As you know, there are a lot of differentials there. I think for now we just need to treat symptomatically and supportively.

I hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions.
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Hi Clem,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Gary