I am new to this forum and hoping that you all will be able to me. I'm apologizing in advance for what will probably be a very long post. My beloved dog Ruben started throwing up undigested food intermittantly almost two weeks ago (Thursday). Ruben did not vomit all weekend but on MOnday vomiting returned so we took hi, to the vet. I should mention that Ruben has always been a chronic vomiter (approx. 1x/week)...however this was usually do to him nibbling on grass/house plants and was only bile. On the first trip to the vet they did an xray, blood work & fecal test. Fecal test came back negative, xray showed gastric wall appearred mildly thickened & irregular (vet said should look like a "c" and Ruben's looked like a "j") and what appearred to be possibly "poorly defined interstitial infiltrates" in his left lung. The presence of a foreign body was ruled out. One day later we received a message from the vet that his blood work came back fine with the exception of a slight elevation in Creatinine (liver enzyme). The vet prescribed two medications (metrenidasole & metoclapramide (sp?)). This particular vet (practice has several) recommened a barium test, as she felt Ruben may have a motility issue causes inflammation in his small intestine. Ruben vomited once Tuesday and then 3-4 times Wednesday.....this promted another visit to the vet on Thursday when an ultrasound was performed. Ultrasound results showed liver mildly enlarged, several gastrointestinal lymph nodes moderately enlarged and stomach wall (pyloric region) appearred irregular and thickened. The day after the ultrasound the vet (diff. one) told us that this is highly concerning for lymphoma....but did also mention that it could be Inflammed Bowel Disease. She suggested we have abiopsy performed to confirmed this diagnosis. We of course were devastated at the mention of Cancer....Ruben is our child and I have done nothing but cry for the past week.
We decided to seek out a second opinion and called our previous vet who we love. (the only reason we ever switched is because she moved to a diff. practicwe that was pretty far for us). I had the records sent to her and she reviewed them. She stated that while lymphoma was a possibility...it was also worst case scenario and she felt it could be a number of other things (including IBD/gastrointestinal issue) she also suggested the biopsy. We scheduled the biopsy with her for tomorrow.
Since last Wed. when Ruben's vmoting was at its worst we have been feeding him boiled chicken and rice he has only vomited 2 times (and only bile...not food). He remains energetic, although he has lost some weight due to not being able to eat his dog food, treats....etc. However, one thing I have noticed is that his pooping has decreased in frequency. The consistency is fine (although it looks dark black in spots) but he only goes one small nugget midday whereas he used to poop one time in morning and one time in evening. He is also eating alot less and only chicken and rice so could this cause this?
I guess I am just looking for opinions of people who have had similar situations/circumstances. My husband and I are absolutely devastated...I can't eat or sleep and have been crying for a week straight because I just want to make the right decision for Ruben. Would Ruben be improving if he did have lymphoma? Couldn't IBD present similar symptoms and do you think we are just fooling ourselves by trying to remain optimistic? I feel terrible about putting him through an invasive surgery simply for diagnosis but the vet has told us there is not other way (endoscopy might not get a sufficiant sample and the only way to diagnose IBD OR lymphoma would be a biopsy). Ruben also comes with me to the barn where i ride horses so maybe he managed to pick up a parasite or something? Or maybe he has some kind of infection or motility problem in his intestines? I just want this to all be a bad dream.