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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16208
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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Concerned about my male, wirehaired miniature dachshund. -

Customer Question

Concerned about my male, wirehaired miniature dachshund.
- 8years old; 14 lbs.
- No fever; Temp of 101.9
- Lethargic; eats food but VERY SLOWLY (used to devour it)
- Bowel movements after each meal (fed twice a day). First part of poop is normal, finishes up with yucky, moist, poop
- Urine is clear; drinking water (but not as much as usual)
- Wants to be held in lap; occasionally makes a repeated groaning noise; occasionally seems like he is trying to clear his throat and it seems like he has difficulty doing so--almost gagging, but not quite
- Does not appear to be in any pain; abdomen normal
- Thoughts? Things to watch for?Thank you!
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Malcolm has had epileptic episodes in the past. He had a minor seizure about two weeks ago (shuddering). First seizure for at least two years.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Takes phenobarbitol twice a day with his food.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 6 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner, but can you tell me:

How long has Malcolm had these signs?

Did you mean that his urine was clear yellow or clear like water?

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

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
He has had these symptoms on and off over the past week or so. His urine was normal, clear yellow. His gums are pink and moist.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
BTW: he does seem a bit more active this morning--although he still is eating slowly.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 6 months ago.

Thank you,

First, I am very glad to hear that his urine is a normal color, since water-like urine can be a sign of kidney issues. As well, those gum parameters are good since they tell us he is hydrated and not having any bleeding issues. That aside, based on all his signs (the slow eating, groaning, gagging, semi-loose stools) this does sound like he has a low grade GI issue that is causing nausea and affecting his GI absorption. In regards ***** ***** causes for this, we could see it related to a brewing bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, parasites/protozoa infections, or general dietary indiscretion. Though if this has been ongoing for a week, then his eating odd things would be less likely.

In this situation, we can start with some supportive care to see if we can get him feeling better. To counter any nausea making him reluctant to eat, we can try an OTC antacid like 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), or 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.

As well, for both his upper and lower GI signs, we can start an easy to digest 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. As well, to firm up the ends of his stools, you can add fiber (ie canned pumpkin, all bran) to his diet to bulk up his stools. And since we do have a bit of GI disruption, a canine probiotics (ie Fortiflora) would also be ideal here. Though if he is very runny, there are OTC probiotics/kaolin pastes like Propectalin, Canikur, Fast Balance, and Protexin Pro-Fiber that would be another option. And as long as improvement is being seen, I usually advise continuing this until the signs are settled, and then weaning him slowly back to his normal diet.

Overall, a wide range of agents could trigger the GI upset we are seeing with Malcolm. Therefore, in his case, we’d want to start supportive care to settle his gut and see if we can get him eating better for us. If he settles, we are happy. Though if this lingers, he cannot keep water down, or appears dehydrated; then we'd want to get his vet involved. They can assess his hydration, test a stool sample, 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-nausea medication +/- antibiotics to settle his stomach, and get him back feeling like himself.

Please take care,

Dr. B.

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If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. **Afterwards, I would be grateful if you would rate my service by clicking on the "Rate my Expert' button at the top of the page as this is the only way I am credited for helping you. Thank you for your feedback!: )

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Dr. B:Thank you for your response. How long should I administer the antacid to Malcolm?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 6 months ago.

You are very welcome,

I would plan to use the antacids for 24-48 hours and see how he goes. If he isn't settling, then we'd want a check at that stage.

Best wishes,

Dr. B

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 6 months ago.
Hi,

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

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