Now I have to say that Sunny's preliction for eating non-edible items and discomfort are a real worry here. The reason is his anorexia of this nature is often due to an underlying nausea (even without vomiting) and blockages are a common cause of both in the dog. Therefore, we do need to tread with care for Sunny.
Just to note, besides harmful ingestions, we can also see these signs with bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, stomach ulcers, and with blockages secondary to other issues (ie enlarged organs, masses). We can also see this related to metabolic and organ issues, but often the anorexia is preceded by other issues (ie increased thirst, weight loss, etc). So, we do have some other concerns too.
With this all in mind, as long as we are sure he isn't sore, we can try some home supportive care to try to settle his stomach. To start, 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.
If he can keep that down, we then want to tempt him to eat. Favorites are allowed but you can consider starting him on a light/easily digestible diet. Examples you can use are 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.
Of course, if he cannot be tempted, then we'd need to syringe feed as you have. Just to note, since we often cannot get as much food into them this way then when they are eating, make sure to use a calorie rich diet. We can use special ones from your vet like Hills A/D or Royal Canin Recovery. Or there are liquid diet options like Clinicare or Dogsure. Finally, in a pinch, we can even use watered down puppy canned food. These all have more nutrition per bite, so a little will go a long way for him. And if you have see straining to pass stool (as opposed to little stool due to little food intake), you can add a dose of cat hair ball treatment or fiber (ie spoonful of canned pumpkin) to these to help push anything lingering in the gut through).
Since dehydration is a real 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 tomake 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).
Just to note, since he isn't vomiting, you can syringe fluids too. If you do so, we often will use unflavored Pedialyte and want to aim for 48ml per kilogram of his weight daily to meet his body's requirements.
Overall, there are a wide range of agents could trigger this GI upset we are seeing. Still, Sunny's eating habits for Barbies and bits are a real worry here. Therefore, we’d want to start supportive care to settle his stomach but keeping a close eye for discomfort or those other signs I asked about. If he cannot keep that or water down at any point, appears dehydrated already, is sore, or doesn’t respond to the above within 12-24 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,
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