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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 21416
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 saint bernard has been acting weird all day, and his

Customer Question

My saint bernard has been acting weird all day, and his sternum is sensitive He yelps every time we put pressure there and yelps when he is lifted a bit
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What seems to be the problem with your dog?
Customer: Like I said, his sternum is sensitive, when we put any kind of pressure on it and lift he yelps
JA: Where does your dog seem to hurt?
Customer: The area where his rib cage meets, right near the stomach
JA: OK. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: His name is ***** ***** he's 8 months old
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about rick?
Customer: He's had two accidents in the house today, it doesn't seem like he has full control of his bladder
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Also, it's hard for him to get up and lay down. Not sure why but he just yelped when we helped him lay down. I have no idea what's up.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 9 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner, but can you tell me:

Is he sore at the bone region or the softer area just below the ribs?

If you press on his belly, any discomfort, distension, tenderness, or tensing?

Any gagging, retching, lip licking, drooling or vomiting?

Are his gums pink or pale/white? Moist or sticky?

Could he have eaten something he should not have (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, etc)?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Softer area below the ribs. Discomfort when his belly is pressed. no symptoms like retching or lip licking gagging ect. Gums look healthy pink, but may have been sticky. May have eaten a toy rope. We aren't sure.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 9 months ago.

Thank you,

Now if he is tender in that cranial abdominal region, we do have a few concerns for Rick. Foreign bodies would be at the top of out list but also pancreatitis or severe gastritis. Bloat could be another concern, but usually their belly is distended and they have non-productive retching.

Now if he is very sore and likely has eaten a toy, we'd want him seen urgently as we can sometimes scope these items right out of the stomach to avoid harm. Otherwise, we can try supportive care for him. To start, you can consider treating him an OTC pet safe antacid [ie Pepcid (More Info/Dose @, Zantac (More Info/Dose @] to see if we can soothe his gut. 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.

Afterwards, we will want to feed him small meals of a light diet. Examples of an easily digestible diet include cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, scrambled egg, or meat baby food (as long as its free from garlic or onion powder). To these we can add some fiber (ie a spoonful of tinned pumpkin or all bran) to the food to bulk up his stool and push any bits of toy through the intestines. As well, you can also add a dose of a GI lubricant (ie cat hairball medication Miralax, lactulose or food grade mineral oil). These can be beneficial for getting this slipping through the gut. Though do be aware that when using the lubricants, we can see self limiting runny stools, but that tends to settle once we are finished using it.

While doing this, we do need to keep a close eye on him. Red flags of trouble or obstruction include restlessness, lethargy, vomiting with blood or coffee ground type material, inability to keep any food or water down, anorexia, pale gums, straining to pass feces or passage of black feces (digested blood). If you see these signs, then having him seen would be best for his vet to have a feel of his belly +/- an xray to see where everything is and whether it will pass on its own.

Overall, we need to tread with are. Rick's signs do raise a few serious concerns. So, if he is sore, we'd want him checked urgently. Otherwise, we can try the above and monitor for 24 hours to see if we can settle him. OF course, if the signs linger, then a check and xray would be safest for him.

Kind regards,

Dr. B.


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