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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16306
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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My 4yo Lab Weim mix has not been eating past few days

Customer Question

My 4yo Lab Weim mix has not been eating for the past few days and drinking sparingly. My normally high energy pal is not quite himself. He has not been greeting me at the door or jumping up at the word "outside." He typically will eat anything, especially if tossed to him but now he won't even flinch when a treat is tossed his way
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am sorry that you have been waiting for a response, but your requested expert isn't online which delayed your question coming up on the list for all to answer. I would like to help if you are still interested in an opinion.
It sounds like Scout has a poor appetite and minimal water consumption and has been lethargic for the past few days.
Lack of an appetite and lethargy can be related to eating something he should not have, too many treats or table food, eating foreign material (which could cause a full or partial gastrointestinal obstruction), chronic pancreatitis, a dietary allergy or sensitivity, toxin exposure, a viral or bacterial infection, Addison's disease (hypoadrenocorticism), inflammatory bowel disease, or even infiltrative cancers such as lymphoma (unlikely at his age).
Because he hasn't eaten normally in several days and he isn't drinking I am very concerned about him. Because he isn't drinking well either he will quickly become dehydrated.
Ideally he would see a veterinarian today if this has been going on for more than 72 hours. Simple stomach upset should pass within 24 to 48 hours. They could examine him, run blood tests and possibly check radiographs and/or an ultrasound to evaluate him and know best how to treat him.
In the meantime they can administer injectable anti-nausea drugs and fluids to rehydrate him.
If you cannot have him seen for whatever reason there are some things you can try at home.
At home to try and settle his stomach you can give either:
1) Pepcid ac (famotidine) at a dose of one 10mg tablet per 20 to 40 pounds of body weight every 12 hours
2) Prilosec (omeprazole) at a dose of one 10mg tablet per 20 to 40 pounds of body weight every 24 hours
These are acid reducers and may help him feel less nauseous so that he will eat and drink. They are quite safe and can be used for several days if necessary.
A couple of hours after giving the acid reducer I recommend offering meat baby foods or a bland diet of 1/3 boiled, minced, white skinless chicken or boiled, lean hamburger and 2/3 boiled white rice mixed with some low salt chicken or beef broth to make it easy to lap up and swallow.
If he continues to not eat he should see her veterinarian for an examination, diagnostics and intravenous fluids and supportive care.
Please let me know if you have any further questions.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I did schedule an appointment for today at 1630. Last friday he and our little dog (9# ***** doxie mix) got into about 3/4 of a rhubarb pie. The little one spent the night regurgitating pieces of the pie and is fine. To my knowledge, Scout did not vomit as much. He plays as he normally would when I throw the ball for him and was able to get him to drink some water, however about 20 minutes later he vomited. It was thicker than water, slightly frothy, and clear
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for that information, it is very helpful.
Rhubarb is toxic for dogs. It contains soluble calcium oxalates which can cause clinical signs of kidney failure, tremors, and drooling. It is possible that your little dog vomited most of what he ate, and thus no long term effects were seen. Because Scout didn't vomit as much it is possible organ damage was done.
I am really glad to hear that Scout will be examined today and highly recommend blood tests and a urinalysis to evaluate his kidney function.
The thicker vomit is probably thick saliva, thicker due to him being dehydrated.
Please let me know how things go for him this afternoon, thank you, ***** *****
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Can kidney failure be treated/ repaired?
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
It depends upon the amount of damage done. If it is mild and we can flush out the waste products with fluid therapy, ease his nausea and heal the irritation to the gastrointestinal tract and get him eating and drinking, then this may be something he can live with and do well for a number of years.
I think that it will be easier to evaluate this once you have test results.