What is Pancreatitis in Dogs?
Tis the season for holiday cheer and amazing holiday goodies. However, those goodies may not be “good” for your canine counterpart as they could cause Pancreatitis. A disease process which is very common amongst our pets during this time of the year. Our Tampa Bay veterinarian has provided information on what the disease is and tools to protect your pet from acquiring Pancreatitis.
What is it Pancreatitis? Pancreatitis is described as an inflammation of the pancreas. When properly functioning, the pancreas creates enzymes which activate once reaching the small intestine. Pancreatitis occurs when these enzymes activate before they reach the small intestine, causing inflammation of the surrounding tissue and organs.
What causes it? The major cause of pancreatitis in a dog is one whom consumes a helping of fatty foods in one sitting. Fatty foods are items such as our holiday favorites: mashed potatoes with gravy, turkey or ham trimmings, and green bean casserole to name a few.
What are the symptoms? In most case dogs experience repeated vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy. Others may experience extreme weakness, loss of appetite, hunched back, and bloating. If you notice any of these symptoms it is important to have your pet seen by a veterinary professional as soon as possible. This is because pets can dehydrate quickly from vomiting and diarrhea.
How is it treated? In most cases your pet can be treated with antibiotics and a low-fat bland diet for a few weeks after being properly diagnosed. As for pet’s with extreme cases of Pancreatitis, hospitalization is required. In this event your pet would receive IV fluids, IV antibiotics, a strictly monitored bland diet, and daily doctor evaluations.
Is it preventable? The best way to prevent Pancreatitis is to feed a well-balanced and consistent diet. Also, precautions should be taken during this time of year if you are expecting guests. Ask guests not to feed your pet anything besides approved treats. Place your pet in a quite room during meal times to avoid table surfing. Everyone has the best intentions and it is often hard to not give in to the puppy eyes but stay strong.
In conclusion, Pancreatitis can be a scary diagnosis for pet owners but not to worry we are with you each step of the way. As pet owners we control our pet’s diet and what they ingest, therefore we must do our part to keep them protected. If you have any questions regarding Pancreatitis or if your pet is exhibiting symptoms, please contact our office at 813-501-4985.