When your dog doesn’t want to eat and throws up what she eats, it is time to see a veterinarian. The vet must do tests to determine the underlying cause or medical condition of the dog so that proper treatment can be given.
A medical condition that can be causing the loss of appetite and vomiting is pancreatitis which should be treated right away.
Pancreatitis happens when the pancreas becomes inflamed. It is located near the stomach and helps digest food and control blood sugar. Pancreatitis can come and pass if treated immediately, or it can stay for a longer period. It can be painful for your dog, thus, you need help from the vet.
Here are the symptoms of pancreatitis, according to Amanda Gardner in “Pancreatitis in Dogs: Symptoms and Treatments” in Fetch by webmd.com as reviewed by Amy Flowers, DVM:
“Often, a dog:
Has belly pain
Other symptoms are:
A fever or low body temperature
A hard time breathing
“If your dog has some of these problems for more than a day, or if these symptoms keep coming back, take them to the vet. It could be pancreatitis, or it could be something else. Either way, you should get it checked out,” Gardner said.
Your vet might make a diagnosis based on symptoms only but most of the time, they will need to do blood tests or an ultrasound, which uses sound waves to capture an image of what is going on inside the body.
It is not known what really causes the pancreas irritation, but some breeds are more likely to get it, specially schnauzers. Older dogs and dogs who are overweight are also prone to developing pancreatitis.
Sometimes, pancreatitis comes as a side effect to a drug, or after surgery. But “more commonly, a fatty meal, like bacon grease or table scraps, triggers it,” Gardner said.
Dogs usually recover from mild cases of pancreatitis, Gardner said. But a severe case can sometimes lead to death.
If the cause or causes of pancreatitis has/have been identified, the vet will deal with that first. For example, if it was a reaction to a drug, they will tell you to stop giving the medicine. If it is traced to the dog’s diet, the dog will be put on prescription food.
“Sometimes it’s hard to tell what causes it, and there’s no clear treatment to fight it. The focus instead becomes keeping the dog as comfortable as possible until the attack passes,” Gardner said.
Gardner said here are the things your vet will do or advise you to do:
1.Depending on the vet’s assessment, he or she might recommend no food or water in the first 24 hours, or may allow you to continue to give food to your pet.
2. The vet might give medication for pain. “Pain medications are usually given by injection. These things give the pancreas a rest, “ said Gardner.
3. IV fluids or dextrose might also be given and is “also a common practice for pancreatitis, Gardner said.
4. At home, please make sure to give your dog lots of water to make sure he or she does not get dehydrated.
5. The vet might also give meds to help ease nausea and vomiting.
6. When your dog is eating again, please give only a low-fat diet. “Look for food that’s easy to digest. Discuss food options with your vet. If this is a single, sudden attack, it’s a good idea to stick with this diet for a week or so. However, if your dog has experienced several episodes, then this new way of eating will be for life,” Gardner said.
Always watch your dog’s diet. A high-fat diet will cause more problems.
“Don’t cave to their puppy-dog eyes, even on special occasions. Your dog doesn’t need to eat human food. Keep your garbage secure. Vets report more cases of pancreatitis during the holidays, when people are eating more fatty foods and so are their pets,” Gardner said.