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Constipation caused by prostate tumor; Area below rectum is hard & round

by Cyd T.
(Ixtapa, Guerrero, Mexico)

On Mon. Oct 22 my mixed breed dog was diagnosed with a non-malignant growth on his prostate

approx. the size of a small lemon. He suddenly lost the ability to poop on 10/22.

I have had the dog, Marcus, for 10 years; his
exact age is unknown, but I estimate him to be about 14 years old. His vet did acupuncture and treated with magnets.

My IMMEDIATE AND PRESSING QUESTION IS: Can I safely do a warm water enema to relieve the straining and discomfort of not being able to poop?

This is not intended as a permanent solution as I did intend to schedule an assisted transition, but I have had unexpected complications arise such as transportation and preparation of burial that are delaying this step.

Prostectomy (surgical removal of part of the prostate gland) is not an option because on Aug 22 Marcus was diagnosed with aspergillosis in his right lung. The vet is not a true holistic vet doing only acupuncture (no herbs) and magnets.

Marcus has done pretty well with my non-professional herbs, vitamins and acupressure massage treatment at home for that issue. His lungs, heart, liver & kidneys are doing well per the vet.

The problem of not being to poop came on after a great BM Mon morning compared
to the smaller frequent BM's happening twice during our 10 minute walks 4 xs per day. It seems that the prostate growth erupted quickly as it was not detectable 2 months ago and was
detected by rectal exam - I also felt the growth. It did cause the poop to have an increasing flat, ribbon shape.

The acupuncture did not prompt a bowel movement, except for one drop, and the area below the rectum is hard and round.

Up until the evening 10/24 Marcus was feeling good except for his frustration at not being able to poop.

Please tell me if you have any recommendations to deal with the poop problem and if there is anything I can do to make him more comfortable.

He will drink water if I offer it and over the
past 2 months I have ensured his water intake by giving water with a syringe. I may have to delay his transition until Friday.

It is heartbreaking to watch him strain as he doesn't give up and doesn't understand the problem. It also seems so sad and undignified for him to transition because he can't have a BM and I want to make sure that I have investigated all options.

Thank you very much.

Comments for Constipation caused by prostate tumor; Area below rectum is hard & round

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Oct 25, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Constipation caused by prostate tumor; Area below rectum is hard & round
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Cyd,
Your assessment of Marcus' situation at this time, to give an enema for relief of constipation, sounds accurate. If Marcus is an intact male dog, then benign prostatic hypertrophy (generalized enlargement of the prostate) and prostatic tumors are much more common. It is more unusual to find prostate problems in a neutered male dog.

I am curious about the area below the rectum that is hard and round. Could this be a perineal hernia, created by the excessive straining? Or is this a perianal adenoma?? A tumor influenced by testosterone, again, commonly found in intact male dogs.

If this is a hernia, then great care must be taken during an enema not to damage that tissue. But also, the section of colon or rectum that is filled with stool and is lodged in the herniated area, needs to be cleaned out.

The amount of fluid used in the enema is usually determined by the size of the dog:
- up to 10 lbs or 15 lbs--use about 1/4-1/2 cup, or 2-4 oz
- 15-35 lbs--use about 3/4 cup, 6oz
- 35-50 lbs--use almost 1 cup, 8 oz
- over 50 lbs can use 1.5-2 cups warm water

Ideally, a red rubber feeding tube is used to insert into rectum, after lubricating with vaseline. Insert into the rectum about 2-4" depending on the size of the dog. Then attach a syringe filled with warm water and flush into rectum.

Hopefully, you are in contact with a veterinary clinic, to obtain a red rubber feeding tube. I am not sure what supplies are available in Mexico, or what they would use in place of a red rubber feeding tube.

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

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Related Pages:
- Dog Diarrhea Medicine,
- Dog Constipation Symptoms & Treatment,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Diarrhea, Constipation and/or Digestive Problems Section

DISCLAIMER: The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

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