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Doc Sara
Doc Sara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 952
Experience:  I am a dog and cat veterinarian with a lifetime of experience in our family veterinary hospital.
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I just adopted a 3 month old German Shepard from the local

Customer Question

I just adopted a 3 month old German Shepard from the local shelter. the first day he came home he was eating, drinking water, and moving around with no problems. Now, four days later, he is not eating, only drinkin very little, extremely quiet, and won't move. He has been laying around almost all day for the past to days, and when he does move He stumbles and just lays back on the ground. he is up on all of his shots with the exception of rabies because he is to young. what could be the problem?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Doc Sara replied 2 years ago.

Good evening - I'm Dr. Sara. I'm a licensed veterinarian who works exclusively with dogs and cats. I'm sorry to hear that you're having a rough start with Rocky! I know it can be a bit scary when they're doing weird things like that.

It's concerning to me that you say he can't get up and walk on his own. There are such a tremendously wide variety of things that could be going on that I doubt I'll be able to narrow it down in this forum. He should be seen by a vet as soon as you're able - if not someone at the shelter where you adopted him, then your own family vet.

The timing is just about right for him to come down with something infectious that he may have been exposed to in the shelter. One big one that we get worried about would be parvovirus. Parvovirus is a virus that is very contagious and causes severe vomiting and diarrhea that can be life threatening. I have occasionally seen a parvo puppy who wasn't having the classic vomiting and diarrhea, but was just very lethargic and not eating and drinking, as you've described. They likely began his parvovirus vaccines, but their immunity isn't fully cemented until after they are 16 weeks old or so.

I'm reaching now, but I suppose he could be hypoglycemic. Puppies that have a low blood sugar can become very lethargic and "stumbly" or even have seizures. It wouldn't hurt to put some karo or corn syrup on his gums - it'll be absorbed this way and he will get at least a little boost of sugar.

He's just a little fella, and with what you're describing I am concerned about him. If it's possible to take him to an ER vet, that would definitely be the safest thing to do.

Please let me know what other questions I can answer for you :)

~Dr. Sara