By Dr. Gerald Bellin, DVM
Wildwood Animal Hospital and Clinic LLC
Spring is in the air. Snow is melting, and we are starting to see what the snow has hidden from us and our pets all winter long. Beautiful flowers will soon be blooming. However, nice smelly piles of leaves, or other not so pleasant materials, will be found by your four-legged companions as the snow dwindles away.
When pets get into unrevealed tasty, or not so tasty, surprises outside, this may result in an upset stomach or intestines. We refer to this as gastroenteritis. Gastroenteritis results from many different things, such as stress, diet, dietary indiscretions, intestinal parasites, metabolic disease in the body, and gastrointestinal syndromes, to mention a few. This time of year we tend to see the dietary indiscretions most commonly because our pets are into all these appealing, once hidden, treasures.
Gastroenteritis will usually present with nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and maybe even mucus and blood in the stool. As this enteritis persists, pets will become dehydrated, depressed, lethargic, not playful, sleepy, and not wanting to eat.
Gastroenteritis resulting from dietary and stress reasons may sometimes be controlled by withholding food and then offering a bland diet for a couple days. If your pet continues to have clinical problems beyond one or two days, we recommend you contact your veterinarian for an examination and fecal exam. They may also request X-rays and blood work to evaluate organs and the metabolic status of your furry loved one.
Always contact your veterinarian with concerns or question and before starting any medications not prescribed.