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This is a discussion on No Answers within the Dog Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; I have a 9 year old dog. We rescued him when he was 8 months and are unsure of his breed. He was 85lbs at ...

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Old 12-18-2018, 01:44 PM
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I have a 9 year old dog. We rescued him when he was 8 months and are unsure of his breed. He was 85lbs at his heaviest. Now he is down to 71lbs. Starting about a week ago he stopped eating. We were been able to get him to eat turkey and ground beef for a couple days but he even stopped eating that for us now. All I can get him to do now is lick a little peanut butter. About 3 days ago his breathing has become labored and he whines or groans with each exhale. He has been to the vet 3 times. The first time they did complete bloodwork. According to the Vet his blood work was perfect. Nothing was out of the ordinary. She also did a full array of xrays and was unable to find anything that could be causing this. We were sent home with pain medication and anti-nausea medicine. After a couple days there was no improvement and he still will not eat. He had more xrays done and was checked by another vet who stated that he thinks there is a mass but was unable to tell where he was feeling it. We had an ultrasound done today and the tech said she could not see any masses or foreign objects and everything appears normal. We are waiting for the official word from the doctor though. They have checked for heartworm and ticks all negative. No issues with the heart or lungs. I just hate to see my guy in pain and he is getting weaker due to not eating. He is still drinking and peeing. Any advice anyone could give will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 12-19-2018, 01:40 AM
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I'm so sorry that your boy is going through that, I know how difficult it is to watch them not eat no matter what hoops we try to jump through and what we offer them to eat.

I wish I could help and knew what test to try, but the best I can come up with is what you've already done and that's get him a second opinion. Did they do full panel blood work? If not I'd request that. Other then that you'd need diagnostic test like CT Scan or MRI and those are costly.

I'd see if he'll eat some of this It's supposed to be palatable, high calorie, and full of vitamins and minerals. Hopefully your boy will be interested and it'll at least get some good calories and nutrition in him. Also make some bone broth and see if he'll be willing to drink some of it. It's full of vitamins, and minerals and supposed to be very healthy and good for sick pups.
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Old 12-19-2018, 08:26 AM
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Did they give you an appetite simulant? Offer a prescription calorie dense food such a/d? I am so sorry you are going through this.
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Old 12-19-2018, 05:57 PM
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The vet has him on Entyce(appetite stimulant), cerenia(anti-nausea), gabapentin(pain killer), and metronidazole(antibiotic). We also started him on a gastroenteric dog food. We started yesterday and he has eaten a little food but nothing major. He is a big dog and has eaten maybe half a can of dog food in 24 hours.

We were able to get him to eat all his pills the first day but today he wont touch them. And if I try to hide them he either eat around them or doesnt eat anything.
The vet thinks it could be pancreatitis. But there has been no vomiting since this started. And the ultrasound did not show anything wrong with the pancreas.
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Old 12-19-2018, 07:12 PM
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Its so difficult to see that happening and feel so very helpless. I can tell you that we have had our girl on Gabapentin to deal with pain from an auto-immune disorder, and for the first two or three days, all she could do was lay in one spot, pretty much all day. She did eventually tolerate it better, fortunately she is off that now, still on very low dose of steroids, but tolerating that, at least for now. Ours loves chicken, and at times when she was sick and would eat nothing, she would still eat some roasted chicken, for awhile only if I hand fed her. We also depended on appetite stimulants for awhile, which really IMO only 'kind of work'. Give him anything he will eat, don't worry about nutrition right now, but you have to try to control weight loss. Once you get him eating again, you can deal with nutrition, but not right now.

You might consider taking him to a specialist, probably an Internist.

Last edited by Laco; 12-19-2018 at 07:15 PM.
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Old 12-21-2018, 12:03 AM
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I agree about seeing a specialist. That will be your best option for finding answers. Call a specialist hospital. I didn't even know they existed until a few years ago, but there are vet specials for every field, just like with humans. If he is making sounds of discomfort and pain every time he breathes then the problem needs to be found asap. The specialist hospital near where I am doesn't require an appointment. It's an emergency hospital that is open 24/7. Hopefully you have something like that around where you are.

I had an emergency with my dog last month and when you mentioned heavy breathing it made me think of what happened with my dog. And if it's something like that then time is critical. One day my dog was acting a bit droopy and uncomfortable. She refused food (which never happens) and she wouldn't settle down to sleep. Her breathing was a bit heavy. I decided to take her to this specialist hospital even though I thought I could be overreacting and maybe she just ate too much.

They originally thought she had pneumonia, but then had an ultrasound and saw fluid around her lung. Part of her lung wasn't functioning. The next day she had surgery to remove that part of her lung. By process of elimination they think it was caused from an inhaled foreign body like a foxtail seed. It was caught early so she's doing great now, but if that fluid hadn't been found when it was it could have been a much different story.

I assume they checked for fluid when they did the xrays and ultrasound? Obviously it could be something entirely different, but since I've been through that I just wanted to mention the possibility.

I'm so sorry he's going through this and not getting answers. The cause needs to be found, not just disguised with pain medication. And time could be vital.

Please keep us updated. I Hope you get answers and the help he needs asap.

Last edited by DogFaming; 12-21-2018 at 12:13 AM.
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