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My 5 year old australian shepard started acting strangely…

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My 5 year old...

My 5 year old australian shepard started acting strangely yesterday morning, doing the standing in corners awkwardly, never lying down and being very timid behavior that i have learned over the years are signs that something is wrong or he is unwell. what was different about yesterday was that he seemed more disoriented, was occasionally circling, and also leaning against the wall- oh and when walking, walking at a slight diagonal. When I called my vet (i live in a small college town outside of austin, texas) they immediately referred me to a dog neurologist in austin and said i needed to go immediately. Even though i thought it was a possible inner ear infection i followed their advice and we spent most of our day in car, at vet, back in car- leaving the emergency specialist with a weak diagnosis of minor ear infection, definitely no neurological damage. I agree with both but since getting home almost twelve hours ago he has stood almost the entire time, panting not heavily but constantly, and occasionally lets out a few whimpers. When I was at the vet in Austin I was hugging him on his underbelly and he winced and that was when i noticed how tense and to my perception protruded his abdomen was, which I mentioned to them but they said it was probably just nervousness. I'm now fairly certain that the pain is definitely abdominal and is most likely being caused by severe constipation, but I'm not sure what to do about it

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?

Yes, he has been bitten by a rattlesnake in the past and we have a lot of scorpions out here so i know what to look for as far as bite wounds and cacti go and he doesn't seem to have problem with moving feet/ ankle etc

Veterinarian's Assistant: The Expert will know what to do. What is the dog's name and age?

Jasper 5 1/2 yrs

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Jasper?

Jasper has suffered from seizures in the past that were believed to be caused by the Triflexis he was taking, since being taken off the medication he has not had any until recently when they gave him gabapentin for mysterious neck pain and he had one the next morning, obviously i gave him no more gabapentin after that

Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Dog Veterinary
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Answered in 8 minutes by:
3/17/2018
Dog Veterinarian: Dr. B., Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 23,189
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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Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today.

Now we do need to tread with care if he has abdominal discomfort as it can be a feature not just constipation but also pancreatitis, severe gastritis, stomach ulcers, or even due to something non-edible (possibly toxic with his other signs). So, provided toxicity isn't likely, I'd note that there are some options you can try to help him pass stool and/or rule out constipation. To start, you can offer a cup of cow's milk. The lactose in milk can be helpful at increasing gut movement to get stools passed. Another option would be OTC cat hairball medication (ie. Catalax, Laxatone, etc) as it works to lubricate the gut to facilitate the movement of gut contents (hard feces in this case) out of the rectum.

If we need a more aggressive treatment, we can also administer a few milliliters of a GI lubricant (ie Miralax, lactulose or food grade mineral oil) orally. These can be mixed into his food. Though if you have to give this via syringe, do so with care to avoid aspiration ( since that would cause problems we'd best avoid).

Furthermore, we can also try adding fiber (ie canned pumpkin or a 1/4 teaspoon of unflavored Metamucil mixed into a bit of canned food) to his diet. Just like people, these can restore fecal output regularity. We offer these with wet food to ease him eating of it, while making sure we are getting water into him (as canned food is 35% water). I would also encourage him to drink as constipation can be complicated by dehydration. Make sure he has fresh water and you can even offer low sodium chicken broth if he won’t drink.

While you are doing this, I would advise that you monitor Jasper 's fecal output. Though if we use the above measures, but if you aren't seeing feces in the next 24 hours, or he begins to vomit, show belly pain, or worsens, then they he should be reassessed for this as well as the other concerns I noted. Especially as impactions of feces sometimes won’t respond to our gentle colon cleaning treatments, and those cases can require more aggressive treatment (ie enemas under sedation).

Kind regards,

Dr. B

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Dog Veterinarian: Dr. B., Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

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