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Common Health Problems in West Highland White Terriers and Schnauzers

IBS and IBD  can occur in canines but is very rare and difficult to diagnose.

 

   My dog Spooky started vomiting his food, then he started having  diarrhea every day and finally just stopped eating his food. This  started about 4 weeks ago.

spookright

At first it was mild but then he started losing weight. I blamed the dog food. So I took him to the local vet and he told me Spooky not  only had Pancreatitis but a dog food allergy.

By then Spooky was losing almost a pound a day and finally would not  get up to eat, drink water or walk around or even jump on the  furniture.  Even my friend thought I was going to lose him.

I took him back up to my local vet and Spooky had developed a  temperature.
This signaled something very serious and I took him to dog specialists (Canine Surgeons) and they admitted him right away.

They  gave him a banana bag and medicines to get the fever down.

I had a long talk with the Surgeon.  We talked about options.

 I told her I had always thought Spooky had a stomach problem and not  allergies.

She suggested we scope him and I said, "Finally someone  wants to scope him!

I wanted to scope him 4 years ago!"  I was tired of  not knowing what was wrong with my dog.  I wanted answers not "Salmon  and potatoes"!

Here is the reports I got back from the Specialist:

Saturday October 02, 2010

"Spooky"

Patient number: 636

We suspect that his recent episode of vomiting and his poor appetite is related to disease in his stomach or small intestine.

Endoscopy (scoping of the stomach and intestine) is recommended in  order to obtain biopsies and determine what type of disease is present.

We are sending Spooky home with an anti-nausea medication called Cerenia.

If you decide to pursue endoscopy, we can schedule the procedure for as early as Monday.

I decided to go ahead with the endoscopy right away.  Spooky had to  have general anesthesia and stay in the hospital for the remainder of  the day.  This is his report when he was released:

Spooky's scoping procedure went well today.  We collected numerous  biopsies from his stomach and small intestine.  The results will be  available late Wednesday and I will call you.

Continue giving the Cerenia until gone.  We are also sending home an  additional medication called mirtazapine, which is an appetite  stimulant.

This medication does not work in all dogs.  Give Spooky 1/2 tablet once daily, starting when you get home.

I had to wait two days for the results and the Dr. Kris told me, (on a cell phone call from her car) that Spooky did not have cancer (which I  wasn't worried about but got the feeling they were thinking along those  lines).

Spooky did not have food allergies and did not have Pancreatitis.  Two different Vets with two different opinions.

What he did have was a very severe stomach disease called IBD.  Lots of people know this disease because it's primarily a human disease, found rarely with dogs.

Most of the time, canines with IBS have GI cramping and various bouts of diarrhea or constipation. Spooky never had constipation but his  bouts of diarrhea were constant.

Unfortunately this disease cannot be cured.  Spooky is now on  Prednisone and this very strong steroid affects ALL the organs.  In  other words he will probably die from organ failure unless he gets off  this drug.

The Vets know this and are trying to wean him off the Prednisone.  He started with 7 mg of Prednisone each day.  He gained all his weight  back. Then they asked me to give him 5 mg every day.  Now we're down to  2.5 mg a day.  At this dosage he is not eating as much as he did.  This  bothers me.

IBD is diagnosed in people but may have other problems like diverticulitis and Crohn's disease.

 

 

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Any information contained on this site relating to various medical, health, and fitness conditions of Westies and their treatment is for informational purposes only and is not meant to be a substitute for the advice provided by your own veterinarian. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing dog allergies - you should always consult your own veterinarian.