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I have a dog that was in a shelter for 4 weeks after being…

I have a foster...

I have a foster dog that was in a shelter for 4 weeks after being picked up as stray. He is a Labrador retriever. I have had him for 2 weeks. He is still ravenously hungry although

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. What is the matter with the dog?

And he is ravenously thirsty. Is this a problem, or just a normal part of recovery? He drinks so much that he has had a few accidents although he is clearly house trained.

Veterinarian's Assistant: Problems with drinking can be serious. I'm glad you noticed it. The Expert will know what to do. What is the dog's name?

Hobie

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Hobie?

He is about 60 pounds, heart worm negative, neutered.

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Answered in 2 minutes by:
6/3/2018
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,997
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns and several moments to type up my thoughts.

Does he look very thin despite eating very well?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Ribs are easy to see. I’d say yes.

I am sorry to hear that Hobie is very hungry and drinking and urinating a significant amount more then usual.

A normal dog will take in 1 to 2 ounces of water per pound of body weight in a 24 hour period. So a 60 pound dog will take in 60 to 120 ounces in a 24 hour day (8 to 15 eight ounce cups). They drink more when eating dry food and less with canned because canned is primarily water. I would measure the amount of water he drinks in a 24 hour period to see if he truly is drinking in excess. Put out a measured amount and then keep track of any added and subtract what is left at the end of a 24 hour period. If he is eating dry food and it is warm where you are and he is drinking more then 2 ounces per pound of body weight over a 24 hour period or more then 1 ounce per pound of body weight if he is eating canned food and the weather has been relatively cool then he should be seen by a veterinarian.

I would be concerned about internal organ disease (especially kidney disease, but liver disease is possible too) or an infection, especially in his urinary tract (if he was not neutered a prostatic infection would be a concern) as well as ketoacidotic diabetes or some types of cancer that cause increased water consumption and thus increased urination.

When we see weight loss with an apparently normal or voracious appetite we need to worry about disease processes that either don't allow him to digest and/or absorb the food he is taking (such as diabetes, liver disease, primary intestinal or pancreatic disease including cancers) or those that lead to a higher metabolic rate such as cancer. I highly recommend that Hobie see his veterinarian for an examination, complete blood count and biochemistry profile as well as a urinalysis and maybe abdominal radiographs or an ultrasound to diagnose his condition.

In the meantime do not restrict his water, let him have as much as he wants.

You might try feeding him a higher calorie prescription food called Hills a/d or Iams Maximum Calorie from your veterinarian.

It has been my pleasure to help you today, and I hope that I have earned my 5 star rating. Please remember to rate my service by selecting the 5 stars at the top of the screen (rating me now does not close your question). You are welcome to ask follow up questions about my response here until you are satisfied, simply use the reply box and let me know. Thank you!

Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,997
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified
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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
If I feed him more than a cup at a time, he gets loose stools. Do you think the type of food is causing the problem?

I'm so sorry I missed your response initially.

It may be that he has a food allergy, and possibly primary intestinal disease that is making it difficult for him to digest and absorb his food. But frankly with the increased amount of water he is taking in I think it is more than just a reaction to his food.

I think he has significant underlying disease going on. Diabetes would be very possible and so would protein losing nephropathy/enteropathy, or cancer.

He really needs to have some diagnostic testing done.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Thank you!

My pleasure, glad to help. Again though my apologies for initially missing your follow up query.

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Hi,

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

Dr. Kara
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