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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 24471
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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I have a 3yo french bulldog who has been throwing up bile a

Customer Question

Customer: I have a 3yo french bulldog who has been throwing up bile a few times a week for the last month, i gave him famotidine to settle his stomach. Yesterday he threw up a number of times a high volume amount of bile and water. He went off food yesterday and was really lethargic last night. He was stretching a lot and would only lay curled up. He was really cold during the night. This AM he started to feel a bit better and needed to poop. Had a few solid poops but since then he keeps asking to go out and tring to poop but nothing coming out.
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: I dont think it is his back as he is guarding his stomach a bit. This morning he took some icecubes and a bit of water but that is it. He is off everything even the special treats he likes. I cannot imagine he got into anything. They have nylabones for bones. My other frenchie is not sick.
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Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 11 months ago.

I'm sorry to hear of this with your Frenchie. You're going to need the help of his vet in order to clarify why your Frenchie has been symptomatic for a month and now his disorder appears to have exacerbated. Vomiting and now attempting to defecate unsuccessfully are important symptoms but they're not pathognomonic (specifically indicative) of any one disorder. His vet will want to perform a thorough physical exam including diagnostics in the form of blood and urine tests including a specCPL blood test which is the blood test most sensitive for detecting the presence of pancreatitis. If conservative testing doesn't reveal anything untoward, an abdominal ultrasound is the imaging of choice because it's quite sensitive in evaluating the gastrointestinal tract itself.

We need to consider primary GI disorders such as occult parasitism, pancreatitis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) as well as other major organ disorders that affect the GI tract - hepatitis, nephritis, e.g. Metabolic disorders such as the less common Addison's disease is always a consideration when nonspecific GI signs are present. A food intolerance needs to be considered as well.

Food intolerance/allergy is addressed with prescription hypoallergenic diets. These special foods contain just one novel (rabbit, duck, e.g.) animal protein or proteins that have been chemically altered (hydrolyzed) to the point that your Frenchie's immune system doesn't "see" anything to be allergic to. The over the counter hypoallergenic foods too often contain proteins not listed on the label - soy is a common one - and these proteins would confound our evaluation of the efficacy of the hypoallergenic diet. The prescription foods are available from his vet. There are many novel protein foods and a prototypical hydrolyzed protein food is Hill’s Prescription Diet z/d ultra (a hydrolyzed protein diet is my preference). A positive response is usually seen within a few weeks if we’ve eliminated the offending food allergen. Food intolerance can arise at any age and even after our patient has been eating the same food for quite some time.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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