SpotOnTM Case Study #X that Includes Your Dog’s Symptom(s)Case Study #X

Ask Our Vets < Back to Search Results< Back

Gallbladder sludge and liver disease in dog

by Sciascia
(Milan, Italy)

My Rat Terrier Beano is 13 yrs old and 13 lb and has traveled the world with us since he was a baby. He's always enjoyed a healthy and fun life, from Paris to New York, Rio to Milan, this dog has been places!

Since 2009 Beano has had some minor health issues, like bladder stones, that we constantly kept under control with sonograms and urine tests both in New York and Milan, because we live between the two.

One day during one of the sonograms we were told there was sludge in his gall bladder, and he was put on a 25ml of Ursacol a day for the rest of his life (Ursacol is the Italian name for Ursodesossicolic Acid). Both Vets in Milan and New York agreed that the gallbladder had "mucocele" and the sludge was becoming solid.

We were told that this kind of condition was untreatable and we could only keep it under control with sonograms and bloodwork. Of course we were told that if the gallbladder ruptured the dog would die, as the contents of it are extremely toxic.

We never missed a sonogram and his blood work was always ok, until this summer he got really sick, vomiting, shivering, and showing great pain in his abdomen.

We rushed him to a clinic, and the vet there performed a sonogram were it showed a great amount of fluid in the abdomen. To my surprise though, I was told the gallbladder hadn't ruptured, and it was a Colangio-hepatitis probably caused by clogged bile ducts or some kind of "offense" to the liver. Beano's liver was very enlarged, amost half the dog, and he was clearly getting a lot of toxins through his body!

On that day his blood work showed elevated values of ALT (at 174) and Alkaline Phospatase 1485 (normal should be between 53-128!) Ac Bilirubin 54.5 and very high white blood cells.

During that acute phase the dog was given fluid intravenously twice a day for 5 days, antibiotics, diuretics, cortisone and vitamin B.
He was also given something called Lactulosio (which is a laxative that supposedly gets rid of toxins in the liver).

After 5 days the dog had improved: he was eating, moving and wagging his tail, his blood work looked slightly better with all the levels reduced to almost normal (although still elevated they told us they were acceptable), and the fluid in his abdomen was almost all gone.


We were told to stop the diet we were giving him (specifically for bladder stones) and start a liver-friendly diet.

After this acute phase the dog has been doing very well and then not well at all, it's so frustrating! At times he shakes uncontrollably (is it nausea or is it the effect of the cortisone?), at times he is lethargic and depressed, and at times he is anxious and famished.

We stopped all medication and went to see a specialist, who took another blood sample. This time (two weeks after the initial incident) his levels were great, aside from Phosphate alkaline which was still a little elevated (but it had gone from 1485 to 287 so the vet said it was totally acceptable).

The specialist confirmed the mucocele with another sonogram and x-rays and hepatopathy. He suggested a liver biopsy, but we don't want to put our old dog though that.

Our main concern is to keep this dog healthy through proper diet and keep his liver free of toxins as much as possible!

Because we are always traveling, and often are in hotel rooms I can't cook for him every day, but I've started giving him white rice and proteins in small doses every day. He is always famished, but sometimes he throws up, and most of all he shivers as if he was being electrocuted. I know there is "poison" going through him and i want to clear him of anything that can harm him.

I've ordered Five Leaf liver diet, but I need to be better educated on how to keep this dog from feeling nauseous. I know some of the drugs he was given are still being metabolized through his body. My vet in Milan told me cortisone can take up to 10 days to wear off, but I want to do the best "natural" thing to improve his life, as little or as long as he has left.

Thank you

Sciascia

Comments for Gallbladder sludge and liver disease in dog

Click here to add your own comments

Sep 09, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Gallbladder sludge and liver disease in dog
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Sciascia,
For your Rat Terrier, Beano, with gallbladder sludge and liver disease (due to inability of the liver to drain bile into the gall bladder), I am very glad that the Alkaline Phosphatase has returned almost to normal using 'conventional' methods.

Now, it is important to feed a diet that is EASY for the liver to metabolize and to DECREASE the production of bile. Basically, this is what you are already doing, feeding a diet of medium protein, HIGH carbohydrates, and LOW/NO fats.

So, the diet would look like this:

1. 1/3 part PROTEIN: lean chicken or turkey;
2/3 part CARBOHYDRATES:
2. 1/3 part cooked vegetable: potato, carrots, green beans, yams
3. 1/3 part grain: rice, wheat, or barley.

NO FATS added.

I realize that you mentioned you have a difficult time cooking for him, but these are ALL considered 'people' foods, so you should be able to make some of your own food and 'share' it with him!

This is NOT a totally balanced diet, but is to be fed for the next 3-6 weeks while he is "recuperating." See Natural Health for Dogs and Cats, by Richard Pitcairn, DVM, PhD for more specific recipes for liver health.

And once he is recuperated, you can find some 'commercial' diets that contain similar ingredients that will also be OK for his liver. In the US, I suggest Spots Stew for Dogs or Nature's Recipe Vegetarian.

NEXT:
supplements to heal the liver and the gall bladder.
Check out this product by Standard Process: CANINE HEPATIC SUPPORT It comes in a powder form that you mix into the food.

You must also start him on MILK THISTLE 8mg per lb (4mg per kg), TWO times daily. You can also add this to the food.

You need to support his immune system, with the addition of a Vitamin/Mineral supplement that contains a buffered form of Vitamin C. See OrthoMolecular Specialties, Mega C Powder

TO BE CONTINUED IN PART TWO

Sep 09, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Gallbladder sludge and liver disease in dog
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Sciascia,
Here is the rest of my response.

Grating raw beets 1-2 tsp into each meal, plus minced/chopped raw parsley, are also good liver stimulants, according to Dr. Pitcairn.

You must also monitor the pH of Beano's urine. Normal dog urine should have a pH of 6-6.5 to prevent the formation of more bladder stones.

Too many vegetables may cause the urine to become alkaline (greater than pH of 7). Therefore, you may need to add some more protein to his diet or add a small amount of apple cider vinegar 1/4 tsp to each meal to maintain an acidic pH of the urine.

Beano ALSO needs the homeopathic remedy Nux vomica 6c or 12c, given 2-3 times daily for the next 3-4 weeks to remove the 'side effects' of drugs. Cortisone can stay in the system longer, up to 6 weeks in some individuals. This is also a good remedy for indigestion, nausea and vomiting.

In the meantime, you should seek the help of a holistic veterinarian to continue to 'fine tune' his care as he responds to the diet, remedy and supplements. I am not familiar with the Five Leaf Liver Diet (I was able to find the Five Leaf Pet Pharmacy, but I am not sure if that is to what you are referring).

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.

Also see...
- Dog Symptom Checker - Photo, Question & Answer Library for Thousands of Dog Symptoms

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Ask a Vet Online via My Online Vet (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED FOR NEW QUESTIONS).

This is the end of SpotOnTM Case Study #X for Your Symptom(s).End of Case Study #X

Ask Our Vets < Back to Search Results< Back

Want to ask our veterinarians a question but haven't subscribed to My Online Vet? Click here to learn how or click here to go back to the Ask a Vet Online Library of questions.

Want monthly "News You Can Use" and important Organic Pet Digest new content updates?  Click hereto sign up for our FREE Dog Care Monthly newsletter.

Back to top of Page

Do you believe in holistic pet care?  If so, please tell your friends about us with a Facebook like, Google +1 or via Twitter, Pinterest, email or good old fashioned word of mouth. Thank you for supporting our efforts!

For additional research, search for your topic...



Disclaimers: The information contained in this web site is provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as nor should be relied upon as medical advice. Rather, it is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a pet owner/site visitor and his/her local veterinarian(s). Before you use any of the information provided in the site, you should seek the advice of a qualified professional.

In the spirit of full disclosure, we wanted to let you know that we proudly support this website through advertising and affiliate marketing. In other words, when you click on a link that takes you outside of this website, we often earn a small commission. These small commissions allow us to keep the site up and running and to continue offering it completely free of charge to you. Rest assured that all content, recommendations and advice are created before, and are independent of, any sponsorship or affiliate relationship. Click here for more info.