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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16268
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 about 15 pounds and ate probably 5-7 Hershey kiss

Customer Question

My dog is about 15 pounds and ate probably 5-7 Hershey kiss milk chocolates 4 days ago. We only gave him water that night and made sure we kept him cool. He had liquid diarrhea the first night about every 2-3 hours. The next day he seemed much better. I gave him rice with a little dog food and kept his water full. He ate and drank normally and has been doing so 3 days after he ate the chocolate.
However, his stool is still very moist and soft, coming out pipe-like but losing form when picked up. I thought he was getting better, as he's still eating and playing normally, but now on the morning of day 4 he's puked twice a mixture of dog food and what looks to be mucus.
What should I do to help him feel better? Is the chocolate still in his system? What can I give him to ease his stomach and bowel movements?
Submitted: 16 days ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
My dog is 8 years old, has all his shots up to date and has had no diseases.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 16 days ago.

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

Now the dose of chocolate he had relative to his weight should not have been enough to cause any signs. Therefore, we'd have to be wary that that may be a red herring and that his GI signs are due to something else (ie bacterial or viral infection, parasites, another dietary indiscretion). Therefore, we'd want to start some supportive care but do need to keep a close eye on him.

To start, we can try to counter that nausea with an OTC pet safe antacid [ie 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. Also if you give this and he cannot keep it down due to nausea that is usually a red flag that we need to bypass his mouth with injectable anti-vomiting medication from his vet.

Once he is more settled, you can plan to try small meals of a light/easily digestible diet. Examples you can use are cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, or scrambled eggs, or meat baby food (garlic/onion free only) There are also OTC vet diets (ie Hill’s I/D or Royal Canin’s sensitivity) that can be used 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 and less diarrhea. You can also add fiber (ie canned pumpkin) and an OTC canine probiotic (ie Fortiflora) to firm the stools and support the gut. As long as improvement is being seen, I usually advise continuing this until the signs are settled, and then weaning slowly back to what you normally feed.

Finally, as long as there is no blood in those stools, you can consider trying a pet safe anti-diarrheal. As I am sure you appreciate, these would not be a cure for infectious issues; but it can still be of benefit. It will reduce diarrhea load, allow the body to absorb more water/nutrients, and soothe the upset gut. In regards ***** ***** options, the one we most commonly use is OTC Kaolin/Kaopectate (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/kaolin-and-pectin-kapectolin-k-p)). Otherwise, Propectalin, Canikur, Fast Balance, and Protexin Pro-Fiber (which is available OTC at vets, pet stores, and even Amazon) would be another option. All will slow diarrhea and those last ones have the added bonus of providing support to the delicate good GI bacteria. So, these can be used as a short-term means of soothing his upset GI.

Overall, the chocolate dose was very low for his size and shouldn't be causing signs this long after. Therefore, we'd want to start supportive care but if he isn't settling in 24 hours, we'd want to consider a check up to make sure there is nothing else present that we need to address.

Kind regards,

Dr. B.

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Customer: replied 16 days ago.
He isn't on any medication and has never had any infections or illness that would require medication or antibiotics. For how long should I give him the diet of rice and bland protein? Also, how long should I give him the anti-dirreahal medication?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 16 days ago.

Good, I am glad that he hasn't been and we can thus us the above.

I would use the above for 24-48 hours at this stage. If he settles, we are happy. If he doesn't, then we'd want to have a check since he again there is a risk that this is an infection and not due to the small dose of chocolate.

Best wishes,

Dr. B.

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If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond.

**Please rate me by clicking on the **stars** at the top of the page as this is the only way the site credits me for helping you. Thank you!: )