Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
203 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I wish had joined to forum under better circumstances, but I was scouring the web for ideas and thought I'd ask you guys for ideas/experiences. Any insights would be quite helpful!

I have a 1.5 yr old mixed breed dog (~43 lbs currently) that abruptly started vomiting (no diarrhea but passing stool!) a week ago with inability to hold down food/water. After going in an out of vet office repeatedly over the past week, his blood work came back with elevated CPK and AST, which could also be because he was struggling a lot during the blood draw. Fecal test was negative. X-ray showed a large distended stomach with air and fluid, but no bloat or obvious foreign body. I took him in two days ago for an gastroduodenal endoscopy where they found a possible gastric abscess along with an inflamed duodenum. They took biopsies, but results won't be back for another week or so. So not a clear diagnosis, but better than nothing, I guess.

In the mean time, they gave me antibiotics, reglan, and prilosec for treatment with a bland diet. I'm having trouble with the bland diet. As much as he loved any food when he was healthy, he just won't touch chicken/rice or chicken/pumpkin. So far, he will eat hand-fed cooked shredded chicken breasts, saltine crackers, yogurt/kefir, or small dollops of peanut butter, and he is drinking water -- but everything can only be done in very small quantities (less than 1/4 cup every 4 hours). Anything more than that, he will throw it all up as soon as he has any sort of movement. I'm trying to stay calm and patient...but it's hard watching him so sick.

So my questions to you guys: Any tips or suggestions for other things to try to ease his nausea/vomiting and avoid dehydration? His condition, while generally stable, really hasn't changed much in the past 4-5 days, so I'm also wondering how long he can keep on like this. Is it too much for me to expect some sort of improvement in another week?

Thanks all for any thoughts or suggestions,
Koda's Worried Mom

(Also cross posted to the New Member section)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
203 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Well, I thought I'll post a follow up about what I found worked for me just in case somebody else run into similar problems. It's been a little over two weeks since the vomiting began and he seems to have more or less recovered fully. Since we're not sure what caused all the stomach/intestine problems and biopsy also showed elevated eosinophils, which can indicate parasites or allergies, he went through a round of deworming, just in case, and we've started him on an elimination diet to see if food allergies may have attributed.

  • Eating food and keeping it down: Even though my dog did not like my bland diet, he loved the canned GI-specific veterinary formulas (e.g. Purina Pro Plan Gastroenteric, IAMS Intestinal Plus). The paste-like consistency of the canned formula made it a lot simpler for me to hide his pills in his meal and he seemed more comfortable holding his food down. The vet confirmed that 1/4 cup every 3-4 hours is about right. Bonus: I felt more at ease that he was getting a more "complete" nutrition with the veterinary formula.
  • Staying hydrated: After the endoscopy, his throat ended up being a little irritated and he persistently had air in his esophagus for a good 3-4 days after the procedure which caused him to regurgitate every time he tried drinking water out of his bowl. Sticking to the small and frequent philosophy, I gave him water mixed in with homemade chicken broth (not too salty!) in 2 tablespoon portions on a small dinner plate every 30 seconds, up to 6-8 tablespoons total, which made him drink slower but didn't irritate his esophagus as much and he was able to keep more fluids down this way. I was also mindful of his urine and capillary refill time on his gums. I took him back in for subcutaneous fluids when his urine started to come out in small quantities with an orange-ish color and the capillary refill time started to slow down a little.
  • Stomach acid irritation: Since they saw a lesion (biopsy results determined it was not an abscess after all) in his stomach, they prescribed omeprazole (generic Prilosec) every 24 hours to give it a chance to heal. The problem was that the omeprazole can sometimes take a few days to start working. I ended up bridging it with famotadine (generic pepcid) every 12 hours for the first 3 days since it will start working within 15-30 min.
  • Morning vomiting: As Koda improved, one of the last symptoms to go away was morning vomiting. So one of the things I started doing was giving him a meal right before bed together with the omeprazole and feed him 3/4th of his morning meal (no meds, except maybe Reglan) extra early in the morning, in bed, so he doesn't have to move too much and then let him continue to sleep for another hour before taking him out to pee and poo followed by the rest of his morning meal together with his medications when he comes back so he can continue sleeping. Eventually the morning vomiting went away.
  • Probiotics: I don't know how much it helps but it's one of those things that can't hurt especially since he was on antibiotics as well. But don't feed it with the antibiotic. I waited 1-2 hours after the antibiotics went down to give the probiotics.
I learned a lot with this experience. If I had to do it all over again, I would have done the x-rays a lot earlier just to rule out foreign body right from the get go, even if he was passing stool normally, as sometimes a foreign body of just the right size could get stuck in the stomach and intermittently block the entrance to the small intestines and cause vomiting that way even if they are still passing stool.

On a side note, I would recommend finding a clinic that can do digital x-rays because the color and contrast on the digital ones compared to the old film ones were night and day, which can make all the difference if the suspected foreign bodies are very small or non-existent at all. Sometimes the mind sees what it wants to see and it's a lot easier to think you're seeing something that's not actually there when the pictures are poorer quality and that can mean the difference between major surgery or a more conservative approach.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,911 Posts
Wow, I missed your first post entirely and I'm glad to hear Koda has recovered so well.

Your follow-up for anyone in the same situation as you was very thoughtful and educational, so I'm hoping anyone looking for this kind of information stumbles across it!

Also, on a side note, hello fellow Michigan person! Enjoying the rain? :p
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
203 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks, I hope that someone will find it helpful as well. Rain is not my favorite, but I can't complain about the awesome summer we've had this year. I like Ann Arbor a lot though (and not just for the awesome dog park you guys have). :)
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top