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Dog digestive problem / upset stomach

by Joe
(CT)

My 8lb. Havanese was taken to the vet in 2009 for vomiting. They gave her Metrodozinale and Panacur, which seemed to make it go away. A month later, same thing. Again Metrodozinale, and it seemed to go away.

(She is 2 1/2 and generally very active, and she has been to a regular vet and more recently a holistic vet.)

I had noticed each time we went to the vet they would also give her famotidine in a small dose but didn't know what it was. After investigating I found out it was Pepcid AC. The Vet said we could give this to her and it would help her stomach digestion. This does seem to work.

If I give her a 1/4 of a 10mg tablet once every day or two there seems to be no problem. I don't know the long term affects or if this is just masking another problem.

She did test positive for Lyme disease in dogs in April 2011. Was treated for a week with Doxycyclene (made her sick and not eat) - 250 mg per day was prescribed.

Went to a holistic vet to treat the Lyme. He gave me Ledum in 1m potency. 3 pills a day for 3 days. Seemed to work.

I'm not sure if she actually had Lyme... her only symptoms was vomit (again) and lack of appetite.

I mentioned her other digestive problems to the holistic vet and he gave her Pulsatilla at first, this didn't seem to work. Then Phosphorus, this seemed to bind her up and she didn't have a bowel movement for days.

I guess my questions are:

- Can I safely give my dog Pepcid AC for long term use?

- Is there any other course of action for my dog?

I feel I'm annoying these vets and I feel silly when I go to their office. The Holistic vet is always much nicer but he says some dogs just throw up occasionally and have loose stools. I just feel that it is too often.

Thanks for your time,
Joe

P.S. My dog had a very bad reaction to the distemper shot in November 2010 given by the regular vet. I had to rush her back and they gave her benadryl and steroids to keep her breathing. I WILL NEVER get another vaccination for this dog!

Comments for Dog digestive problem / upset stomach

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Jul 27, 2011
My Online Vet Response for Dog Digestive Problem/Upset Stomach
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Joe,
At 2 1/2 years of age, your poor Havanese has quite the medical record. Did the digestive problems and upset stomach start after her 'puppy' vaccinations in 2009? That is when you mentioned she had the metronidazole and the Panacur.

Then in November 2010, she had a severe allergic reaction to a distemper vaccination.

Then in April 2011, she had more symptoms of vomiting and no appetite and she was tested Postive for Dog Lyme Disease (and the Doxycycline made her sick).

And now she must take Pepcid 10 mg 1/4 tab every day to every other day to help prevent the vomiting.

As for the long term effects of Pepcid, in my opinion giving any drug is not healthy for long term use. I agree with your thought that it may be masking something.

Also, Pepcid acts to decrease the hydrochloric acid in the stomach. Dogs, and cats, normally have 10 times more hydrochloric acid in their stomach than people do. Therefore, to alter her normal (high) production of HCl in her stomach would not be healthy for her in the long run.

At 8 lbs, is she small for her breed? Or has she been 'stunted' from her long term problems with digestive upsets? Has she had a fecal done to check for parasites, Giardia, etc?

I realize that living in Connecticut, there is a big risk for Lyme Disease for both dogs and humans. I also wonder if her problem did not start with the Lyme Disease but from the vaccinations she received in 2009. Or may be a combination of both?

Your holistic veterinarian prescribed Ledum, which is a great remedy for penetrating or puncture wounds, especially prescribed for tick bites. That did not seem to help, because your pup may need a more 'constitutional' remedy to take into account the adverse vaccination reaction, and her chronic vomiting. Neither Pulsatilla nor Phosphorus (which are also great remedies for dog vomiting in general), worked either.

TO BE CONTINUED IN PART TWO

Jul 27, 2011
My Online Vet Repsonse for Dog Digestive Problem/Upset Stomach PART TWO
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

PART TWO-
Hi Joe,
Here is the continuation of my response.

To prescribe a constitutional remedy, a homeopath (human or veterinary) must take the case and note ALL of the particulars of the patient. For example, in vomiting in general, there are 439 remedies.

For vomiting that only occurs in the morning, there are 69 remedies. Vomiting food only, there are 176 remedies, vomiting water 144.

In my brief acquaintance with your dog online, and her history, the homeopathic remedy Sulphur, occurs in:

1. Puncture wounds and stings of insects
2. vaccination reactions
3. vomiting in general
4. Small body size, (or 'development arrested)

Perhaps, you could note some of the 'particular' patterns that occur with the vomiting. You may need to decrease the Pepcid, to see WHEN she vomits, WHAT she vomits (and what color and how it smells), and HOW often she vomits.

What food are you feeding her, and are there foods you need to avoid because you know she will vomit if she eats them?

Other details are very important about her personality, such as temperature preferences: does she get chilly, and seek out a heat source, or does she love to be cold? Does she like getting a bath? etc.

I would suggest you return to your holistic veterinarian with some of my suggestions, or seek a different holistic veterinarian in the Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy.

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

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Jul 27, 2011
Havanese Digestive problem
by: Joe

I do believe the vomiting has something to do with vaccinations, but I don't have conclusive evidence.

We adopted our dog from some relatives, and she was eating Kibbles and Bits. We changed her diet because she sometimes just wouldn't eat and had no interest in that food. We went to another more organic brand with less ingredients and it seemed to upset her tummy and back to not eating.

We now feed her boiled chicken breast, broccoli, some sweet potato or regular potato, plain yogurt, bonemeal, and fish oil. This seems to keep her stool solid as we had brown rice as an ingredient and it seemed to make her itch and have diarrhea.

The throwing up seems to always occur after about a week of no Pepcid and especially if we let her eat and take her in the car. She used to always be able to ride in the car after eating when we first got her.

Her vomit lately has been brown with not much of a smell but I've also seen it with just regurgitated food, as it was soon after eating. The throwing up and diarrhea seem to coincide but I really believe she had an aversion to brown rice (she has not had any in about 3 weeks and seems much better, no scratching her face or diarrhea).

This dog definitely chooses cool weather over hot weather. She doesn't do well in the heat. She definitely does not like her bath but does love to swim and gets frantic as she exits the water.

I know this dog is extremely sensitive to any medications or changes probably due to her weight. She was not bred small as far as we know and have the AKC papers that just state Havanese. I do believe she is a bit underweight, and lately she is always hungry for more, I just get nervous to give her too much food.

We feed her 3 times a day, about a 1/4 cup of chicken, 2 pieces of broc, and then the supplements in doses for her weight. Lately the Pepcid is given to her at night before her last meal and it seems to keep her acting fine.

I would just really like to figure out why she needs that to make everything jive.

Thanks again,
Joe

Jul 28, 2011
My Online Vet Response for Dog digestive problem/upset stomach
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Joe,
Thank you for all the details, but managing a homeopathic case online (and without seeing the patient) is difficult. It would be much easier for your own holistic veterinarian to take the case, or choose one from the Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy.

I would like to make some comments: the diet you have made up for her sounds very balanced, but she might benefit from the addition of Acidophilus (non-dairy), and less yogurt. Acidophilus is available in capsule form and you would add only 1/4-1/2 capsule to each meal.

You wrote,
We feed her 3 times a day, about a 1/4 cup of chicken, 2 pieces of broc, and then the supplements in doses for her weight. Lately the Pepcid is given to her at night before her last meal and it seems to keep her acting fine. I would just really like to figure out why she needs that to make everything jive.

I suspect she has some 'acid indigestion', which is commonly seen when they have a meal at 5-6 PM, and then nothing until 7-8 AM, because there is large gap in time where she has less food in her stomach, allowing more acid to build up. Therefore, the pepcid seems to give her some relief. If she is fed a meal later at night, 11 PM, and an earlier breakfast, it might help.

Her symptoms of acid indigestion, sensitivity to medication, and vomiting that occurs when she rides in a car, all fit the remedy Nux vomica. (Which is the 'acute' remedy of Sulphur)

Sulphur patients cannot tolerate heat, hate baths, and are usually picky eaters, not wanting to eat before 11 AM.

I think she will need to have Nux vomica now, and wean her off of the Pepcid, and then move on to a dose of Sulphur, in a fairly high potency. It would be best to have a veterinarian that can examine her, and take her case, to guide you in treatment by following her response to the remedy as she is weaned off Pepcid.

She may need a fecal to rule out parasites, such as Giardia or coccidia, and/or a blood test to make sure she has normal kidney and liver function, and that her pancreas is ok. And to make sure that she is not anemic, and her Calcium/Phosphorus levels are good.

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

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Jul 28, 2011
Havanese
by: Anonymous

Thank You for your input. The fecal test was done recently with no sign of giardia, not sure they check for coccidia but it may be included in the same test? The bloodwork would be the next course of action. Thanks for the Nux Vomica remedy and sulphur too...its worth a shot to get her away from the pepcid. I'll check in after a few weeks.

Jul 29, 2011
My Online Vet Response for Dog digestive problem/upset stomach
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Joe,

You wrote,
The fecal test was done recently with no sign of giardia, not sure they check for coccidia but it may be included in the same test? The bloodwork would be the next course of action.

Yes, some labs will look for Giardia and coccidia together. Other labs require two different tests. The veterinarian would charge you accordingly.

If she has not had a blood test in the past 6 months to one year, then I would advise you have it done, for the next course of action.

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

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

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

Mar 27, 2012
Digestive/anorexia
by: Joe

Just an update on our Havanese Cookie. After several vet visits and multiple blood work/ultrasounds. On the second bile acids test it did show an increase that would indicate a shunt or mvd. The vet suggests a dye study, but we have declined so far. We are meeting with dr. Feinman in Weston,ct next week. He is a holistic vet that comes with an excellent reputation. Wish us luck!
Joe

Mar 28, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Dog Digestive Problem/Upset Stomach
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Joe,
That is wonderful! Dr. Jeff Feinmen is a great homeopathic veterinarian, and past president of the AVH. I will be seeing him at the upcoming AVH Conference in Portland, Oregon, May 3-6.

Hopefully, Dr. Feinmen will be able to start some holistic treatments that will help!

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

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us
by clicking the like button at the top of the left
margin
. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Aug 05, 2013
has joe found out what is wrong with his dog?
by: Anonymous

i wonder if the problum could be epi . did your dog loose alot of weight and still the same with vometting. with direa. find a vet that knows about epi. and have your dog tested.

Aug 06, 2013
My Online Vet Response for: Dog Digestive Problem/Upset Stomach
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

August 5, 2013

Dear Anonymous,
Thanks for your suggestion to check for EPI, or Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency. This condition is usually characterized by ravenous appetite, chronic loose stool/diarrhea, and severe weight loss. Vomiting is not a typical symptom, nor is picky appetite.

There has not been any update on Joe's Havanese dog, 'Cookie', so I am not sure how she is doing.

Thanks for asking!

To find a holistic veterinarian in your area click on the link below
Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is AVH.org.

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

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

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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