Here’s what you should know about pancreatitis in dogs
Do you know a dog who recently got diagnosed with pancreatitis? I do! One of my furry friends recently took a trip to the pet vet only to find out that he had pancreatitis. But what does that mean? Pancreatitis in dogs is a serious condition in which a dog’s pancreas is inflamed because of leakage of digestive enzymes.
Pancreatitis is often a problem for dogs who are overweight or who eat a diet which is high in fat. It’s also very common in breeds such as Yorkshire Terriers and Schnauzers. If your dog is one of these breeds, it’s important to watch the food they eat closely. The same goes for overweight pups. Now, trust me, I know how great some fatty foods can taste, but health is super important. Keep this in mind: Dogs who are overweight and get pancreatitis usually develop into much more serious cases. Once a dog has acute pancreatitis, he will be more likely to develop it again in the future.
Symptoms of pancreatitis to look for:
The signs of pancreatitis can vary from dog to dog, so it’s important to know what symptoms to look out for. Often, early symptoms of pancreatitis in dogs may be as simple as noticing that your dog’s appetite has drastically changed. He may stop eating altogether, or you might notice that your dog is vomiting often. Possibly you may notice a change in your dog’s bowel movements, especially if your dog is experiencing diarrhea. Here are a few additional symptoms of pancreatitis in dogs to be aware of:
- Difficulty breathing
- Sensitive or painful abdomen
- Increased or decreased body temperature
- Infection in the body
- Inflammation throughout the body
How is pancreatitis in dogs diagnosed?
A veterinarian is the only person who can truly diagnose pancreatitis in dogs. It can be diagnosed with a simply biopsy of the pancreas. It can also be diagnosed after studying blood work, which is usually the most common option.
Is there a way to prevent pancreatitis in dogs?
The best way to prevent your pet from getting pancreatitis is by monitoring your dog’s diet closely. Don’t allow your favorite four-legged friend to eat high-fat food. Keep a close eye on leftover consumption and be sure not to feed your pet fatty sections of meat you’re cooking.
How does pancreatitis in dogs get treated?
In dogs with mild symptoms, a diet change may be all that’s needed to calm an inflamed pancreas. The more serious a dog’s pancreatitis is, the more treatment he will need. Some dogs will need to go without food or water for 24 hours so that the inflamed pancreas won’t work so hard. During this time, the veterinarian might even take your dog off any medicine he may be taking in the hopes for calming the pancreas down. If the veterinarian is worried about dehydration, your dog can be fed intravenously. Other dogs may not need to have periods without food, but they may need to go on a temporary, or even permanent, diet. In a very serious case, dogs with pancreatitis who are suffering from pain will be treated with pain medication.
What do you know about pancreatitis in dogs? Has your dog ever suffered from it? Let us know in the comments!
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