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Pet Doc
Pet Doc, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 7524
Experience:  Veterinarian
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my beagle wont eat or drink and is lethargic. She is 12 years

Customer Question

my beagle won't eat or drink and is lethargic. She is 12 years old
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Pet Doc replied 9 years ago.

Hi thereCustomer


Thank you for your question regarding your 12 year old Female Beagle and her recent inappetance and lethargy over the last few days. As you can imagine, in an older dog, there are quite a number of potential systemic problems that could now be manifesting here ranging from an organ problem like kidney or liver failure, a systemic problem like heart failure or even something unpleasant like a tumor somewhere in the body. It could also be that your girl has gotten into something in the yard that could have caused her to become dull and lethargic. The options are endless for these symptoms and this is why it is so important we get your girl checked out by a qualified Vet next time you can get her to your local Vet clinic. I would also definitely recommend a full blood panel for your girl to check her organ function, ensure she doesn't have an anemia as well as to help rule out endocrinological diseases like hypothyroidism, Cushings, Diabetes and Addisons disease.


It could also be that she does have oral pain and this could be the cause of his inappetance, however this would not allow for her dullness and lethargy. I really would encourage you to get your girl checked as soon as you can. The sooner something is picked up, the easier it is to treat. Too often my clients leave these symptoms too late before bringing their animals to me and by then too much irreversible damage has been done.


Whatever the case you should at least visit your Vet in the morning - unless she seems absolutely symptomless by then. Please keep a close eye on her mucus membranes, capillary refill time and respiratory rate tonight as follows:


Mucus membranes - flip her lip and look at the color of her gums. They should maintain a nice salmon pink color. Get her to the emergency Vet if they appeal white or very pale pink, or if they are a dark deep red color.


Capillary Refill time - this measures blood perfusion and test this by putting your thumb on her gum to apply pressure. After you release your thumb you will see the gum blanch. Capillary refill time is the amount of time it takes (in seconds) for the gum to return to a healthy pink color from the blanced white color. If 2 seconds or less don't worry - if it is taking significantly more time, again - off to the emergency Vet.


Respiratory Rate - if she is continuously panting throughout the night this is a sign of shock and or pain and a signal for a trip to the emergency Vet.


If she has ongoing lethargy tonight, seems painful or you are just overly worried about her state of health - ease your peace of mind by getting her to your local emergency Vet clinic.


At the very least, please get your girl to the Vet when you next can and request a full check up and blood panel whilst giving your Vet the full history of what has happened over the last few days. Please reply if you require any further info won't you.


Thank you and please now click ACCEPT.

Kind Regards,


Dr M D Edwards