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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16198
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 6 month old French. He's not eating

Customer Question

Hi I have a 6 month old French. He's not eating
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 today.

How long has it been since he ate?

Has Tommy had any retching, gagging, lip licking, drooling, or vomiting?

Is he drinking? Can he keep any water down?

Are his gums nice and pink (not white/pale)? Moist or sticky?

If you press on his belly, does he have any tensing, tenderness, discomfort, or pain?

Could he have eaten anything he should not have (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, human meds, etc)?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
2 days.
No
Yes. He can't keep water down
Pink
No
Yes
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you,

First, I am glad to hear that Tommy hasn't any of those more worrisome signs and is unlikely to have eaten something harmful. That said, if he cannot even keep water down, then we need to tread with care. This is because his signs support severe nausea and dogs too nauseous for even water tend to need us to bypass their mouths with injectable anti-nausea medication to give them a chance to settle.

With this in mind and with his being so young (and thus a high risk for dehydration), we'd be best to have him seen urgently by his local vet. Though if there is any delay in doing so, I do want to note some supportive care you can try with him.

Now as long as he can keep some water down, we can try some home supportive care to try to settle his stomach. To start, if he hasn’t just vomited (since otherwise we’d need to rest his stomach for a few hours first), then you can consider treating him with an antacid. Common OTC pet safe options would be:
* Pepcid (More Info/Dose @http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/famotidine-pepcid)
*Zantac (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/ranitidine-hcl-zantac)

* Tagamet (More Info/Dose Here @http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/cimetidine-hcl-tagamet)
Whichever you choose, we’d give this 20 minutes before offering food to allow absorption. Of course, do double check with your vet if he has a known health issues or is on any medications you haven't mentioned. Again I would note that if you give this and he cannot keep it down due to nausea that is usually a red flag that we need injectable anti-vomiting medication from his vet.

Though if he keeps that down and settles, we can then start him on a light diet like cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, cottage cheese, or scrambled eggs (made with water and not milk). There are also OTC vet diets that can be used (ie Hill’s I/D or Royal Canin’s sensitivity) too. The aim of these diets is that they will be better tolerated/absorbed by the compromised gut. Therefore, it should get more nutrients in and result in less GI upset.

Since dehydration is a risk here, we need to keep an eye on his hydration. To check this and ensure he’s not becoming dehydrated, there are a few things you can test. Further to checking for gum moisture, you will want to make sure his eyes are not looking sunken and that he doesn’t have a "skin tent" when you lift the skin. To see how to check these parameters for dehydration, you can find a good video HERE(http://www.ehow.com/video_12232503_dog-dehydrated.html). If you are seeing any signs of dehydration already, then that would be our cue to have him seen before this becomes an additional issue for him (especially as it is often dehydration that makes them feel unwell).

Overall, there are a wide range of agents could trigger this GI upset we are seeing. Common causes at his age would be bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, parasites and dietary indiscretions. Therefore, we’d need to tread with care. You can start supportive care to settle his stomach but if cannot keep that or water down at any point, appears dehydrated already, or doesn’t respond to the above within 8-12 hours; then we'd want to get his vet involved. They can assess his hydration, rule out fever, make sure there is nothing in his stomach that shouldn't be there or any sinister viruses present. Depending on their findings, his vet can treat him with injectable anti-vomiting medication +/- antibiotics to settle his stomach and get him back feeling like himself.

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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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Tommy. How is everything going?
nekovet