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Dr Wade
Dr Wade, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 274
Experience:  7 Years as a small animal general practice/general surgery/emergency & critical care doctor.
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How long can a dog go without food and water Our 17 3/4 year

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How long can a dog go without food and water? Our 17 3/4 year Lhasa has been ill and we and our vet just don't think she can recover again. She hasn't eaten any food or water in 6 days and yet is still walking around and occasionally barking. I have tried all the usual methods, putting peanut butter on her lip etc. She just wipes it off. She goes over to the water bowls and sniffs them and walks away.   She does not appear to be in any pain. We have agreed that if she appears to be in pain or loses control of walking etc, we will take her in to be put to sleep.

In my experience dogs can sometimes go 8-10 days without eating, but 6 days without water is a very long time. I would strongly consider euthanasia at this point. Especially with kidney and liver failure the end stages of these disease can get very ugly. The dogs will start to have seizures and other neurological symptoms and even though she doesn't seem to be suffering I can almost guarantee she is miserable and just starving herself to death. The reason that kidney/liver failure dogs don't eat/drink is because they have toxins building up in the bloodstream and brain and other tissues of the body because these organs are not removing the toxins like they are supposed to. I just don't think it is fair to her to have to continue on in that condition. I am an advocate for euthanasia especially to relieve suffering. In this respect I think she has been too good of a pet to let her suffer through end stages of kidney and liver failure.
I am so sorry to hear about your beloved pet.

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