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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16214
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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My dog ate uncooked multi grain oatmeal while I was gone.

Customer Question

My dog ate uncooked multi grain oatmeal while I was gone. He's obviously uncomfortable. He had one normal bowel movement about 6-7 hours ago, and threw up some recently after quite a bit of panting. Called a vet earlier they said water and walking, but I can hardly get him to walk from one room to the next (very slow and a little clumsy) but he has been drinking water. Wondered about an enema, or should I head to the emergency vet?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 9 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

How long ago would he have eaten this?

Any retching, gagging, lip licking or vomiting?

Can he keep the water down?

Are his gums pink or pale/white? Moist or sticky?

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

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Hi, thank you. Sometime between 11am and 6pm was when he ate, he's vomited a few times with some heavy breathing before, quite a bit of oatmeal came out but now he's whining more and having the panting/breathing without anything happening. Gums don't look white or seem sticky, hard to tell. He's shivering a little especially in the back end. He doesn't wince when I touch his stomach but is hardly wanting to walk.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 9 months ago.

Thank you,

Just as I cannot see your time zone listed, can you tell me how many hours ago that time frame was?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Mountain, so 8 hours ago to 15 hrd ago he ate it. He had been drinking water but not sonce the vomiting which had mostly been last couple hours about 6 or 7 times
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 9 months ago.

Thank you,

First, the reason I was keen to have an ideal of our time frame is to gauge where the oatmeal is in the GI. Though if it has been ~8-15 hours, while it will be in the intestines, I would be concerned that it’d not below enough to clear with an enema. Therefore, we’d still need to work from the mouth down to help clear this for him.

That said, if he has been vomiting/retching; then that is the first issue we need to settle (since we cannot treat orally to help him pass all this if he cannot keep our treatments down). Therefore, to start, we may need to think about starting him on 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) or Zantac (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/ranitidine-hcl-zantac). 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, then we can move forward with getting the oatmeal to pass. Of course, if he cannot, we’d need the local vet to treat his nausea with injectable anti-nausea treatment to settle him so we can do so.

Once he is settled, we want to consider starting him on oral GI lubricants. For this we can use OTC cat hairball treatments, Miralax, Lactulose, or food grade mineral oil. Since he is quite full, if we settle the vomiting, we can give this carefully by syringe. But if we have any left over nausea, we may need to mix into a bit of food to just reduce the risk of him aspirating this. These will just lubricate the gut and facilitate him passing this oatmeal and get him comfortable quicker.

Further to this, I do want to note one issue that we do have to consider since this was dry foods like this. Specifically, we can see issues with dehydration and electrolyte imbalances as the oatmeal starts pulling fluid from the body into the GI. Therefore, if he becomes very lethargic, drinking large volumes, or appearing dehydrated, or weak; then it would be prudent to consider having him checked by your vet and potentially admitted for IV fluids while he is processing and passing all the excess food. To determine if he is dehydrated and needs IV fluid intervention, you can see how to do so HERE (http://www.ehow.com/video_12232503_dog-dehydrated.html).

Otherwise, if he can settle, we can use the above and to monitor him at this stage. Though if he keeps vomiting, shows paling gums, or his breathing rate is >30 breaths per minute, then it'd be ideal to have him seen to ensure there are not complications here and to get him onto pain relief, ant-nausea treatment, and GI lubricants to pass this and settle.

Just in case you do want to see a local emergency vet, you can check HERE and @ http://www.vetlocator.com/.

Please take care,

Dr. B.

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