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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16316
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 is not eating for days now, drinking water but then

Customer Question

My dog is not eating for days now, drinking water but then going to throw it up right after.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Hopefully it didn't make a mess. Did your dog eat anything unusual?
Customer: Not that I know of. But she very well could have.
JA: OK. The Veterinarian will know what to do. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Bailey, she's probably 5 now.
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Bailey?
Customer: She's a boxer, about 50-60 pounds.
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 months ago.

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

Can she keep any water down?

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

If you press on her belly, does she have any discomfort, tenderness, or tensing?

Could she have eaten something she should not have (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, etc)?

Has she had any diarrhea?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
She drinks a lot of water and goes to throw it up but doesn't get all of it up, only throws up a little. No diarrhea, possibly constipation? She may have eaten something, we have a huge backyard with all kinds of animals (toads, turtles, raccoons, snakes) that come through. I will have to check on her gums/belly press when I arrive home later tonight.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 months ago.

Thank you,

First, I have to say that I am quite concerned with how nauseous Bailey is. Often dogs that are too nauseous to keep water down are the ones we need to use injectable anti-vomiting medication on to break their vomiting cycle. So, we do need to tread with care here. As well, if she hasn't been eating or keeping food down, then that likely means she has little stool to pass as opposed to being constipated.

Now based on the signs we are seeing, we do have a few concerns. Common causes we need to consider include bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, parasites/protozoa infections, general dietary indiscretions, and ingestion of harmful items (ie toxins, plants, non-edible items).

With this all in mind, we can try some home supportive care to see if we can settle her stomach. To start, if she hasn’t just vomited (since otherwise we’d need to rest her stomach for a few hours first), then you can try an OTC pet safe 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 check with your vet before use if she has any known health issues or is on any medications you didn’t mention. Though again if you try this and find the nausea just too severe to keep it down, then that is usually a red flag that we need the local vet to bypass her mouth with injectable anti-vomiting medication.

After that has had time to absorb, we can start offering small sips of water (since overdrinking can trigger vomiting) and small meals of a light/easily digestible diet. Examples you can use are cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, cottage cheese, scrambled eggs, or meat baby food (as long as its garlic/onion free). When you offer these meals, give her 30 minutes after to settle. If she keeps the food down, you can give a bit more and so on. 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 long as improvement is being seen, I usually advise that the diet be continued until her signs are settled, and that they are then slowly weaned back to their normal diet.

Since dehydration is a risk, we need to keep a close eye on her hydration. To check this and ensure she’s not becoming dehydrated, there are a few things you can test. Further to checking for gum moisture, you will want to make sure her eyes are not looking sunken and that she 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 do find these dehydration signs, then that would be our cue to have her seen before this becomes an additional issue (especially as it is often dehydration that makes them feel unwell).

Overall, a wide range of agents could trigger the signs we are seeing with Bailey. Therefore, we’d want to start supportive care to settle her stomach. If she cannot keep that or water down at any point, appears dehydrated already, or doesn’t respond to the above within 12-24 hours; then we'd want to get her vet involved. They can assess her hydration, rule out fever, make sure there is nothing in her stomach that shouldn't be there or any sinister viruses present. Depending on their findings, your vet can treat her with injectable anti-vomiting medication +/- antibiotics to get her back feeling like herself.

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!: )

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 months ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr. B.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 months ago.

Hello again,

How is everything with your wee one?

Dr. B.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
We took her to a vet who diagnosed her with hook worms. She's on treatment, along with anti-diarrhea medicine, anti-nausea and an appetite stimulant but we still cannot get her to eat.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 months ago.

Hi again,

While I am glad to hear that she is being treated, I share your concern if she is still not eating. Therefore, I would strongly advise ringing her vet for a stronger option for both nausea and stimulating her appetite. Otherwise, we’d want to offer or syringe feed watered down Hill's A/D, Royal Canin Recovery, or Clinicare Canine/Feline Liquid Diet. All of these are critical care diets that are calorically dense, so a little goes a long way nutrition-wise.

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, please rate me 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 (there is no extra cost for doing so). Thank you for your feedback!: )