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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 21223
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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Dog has no appetite and weak and lifeless

Customer Question

dog has no appetite and weak and lifeless
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 years ago.

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

I am very concerned about your lass. How long has she been showing signs?

Has she been showing any retching, gagging, lip licking, drooling, excessive grass eating, or vomiting?

Can she keep water down?

Are her gums nice and pink (not white/pale)? Moist or sticky?

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

Could she have eaten anything she should not have (ie bones, stones, socks, toys, plants, chemicals, human meds, etc)?

Any diarrhea?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

this morning she was fine when i left for work. gave her her daily dental bone which she ate. dont know what happen during my absence. this eveing she was a active like normal and feel like she has a fever. her eyes blood shot. just took her to do #1 which was okay. dont like to drink water at this time. she started licking her lips

no diarrhea.

should i give her anything to eat?

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you Ann,

Has she had any vomiting at all?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 years ago.
Hi again,

While I am waiting to hear back from you, I do want to leave my thoughts for your return. Based on what you have told me, I do suspect she is quite nauseous here. Therefore, I do think feeding her is ideal but we need to tread with care since she may refuse or vomit when doing so.

To start, since she sounded so weak and collapsed, I wound note that you can try to first give her a bit of a sugar boost. To do this, you can rub some karo syrup, honey, glucose syrup, or similar high sugar products on her gums. This will give her a bit of energy and hopefully perk her up as we try to help her.

Therefore, I would suggest a light diet at this stage. Examples of this would be boiled chicken with rice, boiled white fish with rice, scrambled eggs (made with water and not milk), or cottage cheese with rice. There are also veterinary prescription diets that can be used in cases of gastroenteritis (ie Hill’s I/D or Royal Canin’s sensitivity). The easily digestible diet will be better tolerated and absorbed by the compromised gut and should get some nutrients into her. You can also feed this as small frequent meals to further reduce the level of nausea she may be experiencing.

As well, and especially if she did have any vomiting at all, I would note that we can consider trying to settle her stomach with an antacid. There are a number of antacids that are available over the counter and pet friendly. I would advise only treating with one, but the two I tend to recommend are Pepcid (More Info/Dose) or Zantac (More Info/Dose). Typically, this is given 30 minutes before food to be absorbed and in effect before offering food. Of course, you'd want to speak to her vet first if she has any pre-existing health issues or is on any medications you haven't mentioned.

Otherwise, since she is so listless and not drinking, we do also need to keep an eye on her hydration. To check her hydration status to make sure they are not becoming dehydrated there are a few things we can test. One is whether the eyes appear sunken, if the gums are tacky instead of wet/moist, and whether she has a "skin tent" when you lift the skin. To see how to check these parameters for dehydration, you can find a wee video on this HERE. If you are seeing any signs of dehydration already, then you do want to have her seen by the vet before this becomes an additional issue for her. (since it is often the dehydration that starts to tap their energy level, depresses them, and makes them feel ill).

Overall, I am quite concerned about your lass and how quickly she has deteriorated. Therefore, I would advise the above to see if we can perk her up, get her eating, and get her back on track. Of course, if she doesn't or starts vomiting, then we'd want an urgent check with her vet so that they can start her on injectable anti-nausea treatment +/- fluids while helping to pinpoint the trigger for her signs and clearing that for her.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

All the best,

Dr. B.


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