Gastroenteritis in dogs: symptoms and treatment


It has always been said that the dogs end up looking like their owners or vice versa.

Surely there will be those who disagree with this statement, but what is certain is that humans and this kind of animals we share certain diseases, like diabetes.

Today we are going to talk about another: gastroenteritis.

Gastroenteritis in dogs

The Gastroenteritis consists of an stomach and intestinal inflammation that causes vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Its origin is usually found in certain bacteria and viruses, but also in contaminated water or improperly handled food.

It is also possible to contract it at eat from the trash or something inappropriate. It is spread among dogs just as it does in humans.

Sometimes Gastroenteritis can also be a disease of the intestinal tract when it does not perform its functions in the right way. Then it carries the same symptomatology as when it has the aforementioned origin.

It occurs in any type of dog and at any time of his life, although there are certain races in which it has a higher incidence. Eye, we must bear in mind that it is not uncommon for the dog to vomit, as it does so to purge your stomach.

Gastroenteritis symptom in dogs

As we said in the previous point, it is not uncommon for a dog to vomit occasionally, or even have diarrhea, especially when you have eaten something that is not part of your usual diet. But from there to gastroenteritis there is a big difference.

In addition to the two symptoms mentioned, they have to be more than occasional (that is, vomiting and diarrhea have to persist), we will notice that the animal refuses to eat and also all kinds of physical activities. From going for a walk to play with us.

All this will be coupled with the lack of food intake and It will result in the dog being very shabby.

As well we are likely to perceive that our dog is sore, either because of the position it adopts or because it emits complaint sounds.

We can also notice that our pet perform strange movements with your abdomen, which may be caused by cramping in the area or because it seeks to force vomiting to find relief for your discomfort.

If gastroenteritis is of a greater severity blood may appear in both vomit and stool. In these cases it is essential that we take our dog to the veterinarian urgently.

Only the practitioner can properly judge the state of the animal and put the most convenient treatment. Failure to act quickly could complicate the situation. and have serious consequences.

Gastroenteritis treatment in dogs

If your symptoms are not of serious severity, we can take care of ourselves of the adequate restoration of the animal with a series of measures aimed at your digestive system can rest and thus recover your usual good state.

As we said, it is the dog itself that will not want to eat food and in itself this is a good thing, but we must offer small amounts of food for a couple of days.

If you don't want to eat anything during that period, don't worry. But we shouldn't let it go much longer than two days without eating since it could weaken too much. From that moment, and if you continue to have symptoms, you should consult a professional.

Nor will he want to drink water because it causes vomiting, but here we can not compromise. As for a human, For dogs, one of the biggest risks of gastroenteritis is dehydration.

So we have to try by all means that the animal drinks A good amount of this liquid. If this is not achieved, the veterinarian can be taken to decide if necessary hydrate it with serum. This would also be necessary if the vomiting does not remit.

If the veterinarian considers it appropriate, due to the origin of the disease, he can determine that the best is treat the dog with antibiotics, but he always has to decide. Let's not be tempted to medicate it ourselves, although it has already gone through the disease before.

Finally do not forget to give your darling, it will be essential to make your recovery faster.

Gastroenteritis in dogs, what is it?

Gastroenteritis in dogs it's basically like ours. It is a inflammation of the stomach and intestine that causes discomfort, pain, vomiting and diarrhea. It is caused by contact with certain bacteria, viruses and also by poisoning us with poorly handled food or drinking contaminated water. In the case of dogs, also the fact that they eat from garbage is a risk factor, since there are spoiled foods. Dogs spread it to each other just like humans.

Gastroenteritis it can affect any dog, regardless of race or age, although there are certain races more likely to suffer from digestive sensitivity. Do not confuse gastroenteritis with occasional vomiting in dogs, which are something natural and caused by themselves to purge themselves.

Symptoms of gastroenteritis in dogs

As we said, an occasional vomit is normal in a dog, and even an isolated episode of diarrhea, especially if you have eaten something out of the ordinary on a given day or if there have been changes in your diet. But This is far from gastroenteritis.

If it is gastroenteritis, The dog will not have a single episode of vomiting or diarrhea, but will be recurrent. In addition, it will show other symptoms such as apathy, aversion to food and malaise. You may also show pain through whining or taking unusual postures to sleep or when sitting.

In the most severe cases of gastroenteritis in dogs, there may be blood, both in diarrhea and in vomiting. In these cases, the urgent visit to the veterinarian is essential. If you do not act quickly, the disease can aggravate and lead to serious consequences.

Gastroenteritis treatment in dogs

If the condition of the dog is not serious, we can take care of gastroenteritis ourselves, just as we would do with human gastroenteritis.

Reduce your food consumption, and above all, nothing to give your food! The last thing you need is more complicated foods and fats to digest. If you don't want to eat, don't be alarmed, you may be fasting A few hours, or even a day, don't let it be more than two. Feed him little by little and watch his digestive system react. If after two or three days it hasn't improved, you should go to the vet.

Pay close attention to hydration! Dehydration is the greatest risk of gastroenteritis and can be very dangerous. Even if he refuses to drink, don't let him go without water. If you do not get it, it will be necessary to hydrate with serum in the emergency room.

As for the medication, antibiotics may or may not be necessary. Only the veterinarian can decide if they are the most appropriate or not, never meditate your dog on your own!

Gastroenteritis in dogs is usually not serious and is easily cured. Remember to give your dog a lot of love during those days, so he will recover more easily!

My dog ​​has gastroenteritis. What is gastroenteritis in dogs?

When we talk about gastroenteritis, also known as gastrointestinal infection, we mean a inflammation of the inner membrane of the gastrointestinal tract, such as small intestine or of stomach.

Gastric mucosa and intestinal mucosa are mainly affected and can be acute, persistent or chronic, something essential to consider when determining treatment and making a prognosis in the veterinary clinic.

Causes of gastroenteritis in dogs

The mucous membranes can be altered by different causes, including the appearance of a virus, a parasite or a bacterium, for example, but there are other causes of gastroenteritis in dogs that should be highlighted:

  • Infection of viral origin
  • Infection of fungal origin
  • Bacterial infection
  • Ingestion of spoiled food
  • Intake of toxic plants
  • Contaminated water intake
  • Contact with sick dogs
  • Prolonged stress situation.
  • Reaction to an active or adjuvant substance.

It may happen that we do not know exactly the cause that has caused the appearance of gastroenteritis in our dog. For that reason we advise to control the diet of the dog in detail, avoid eating food from garbage, leftovers from our food or the street.

Foods that a dog with gastroenteritis can eat

Just as we would do, the furry must wear a bland diet, at least during the first two days. Taking this into account, we will prepare chicken broth without bones and without skin, avoiding using salt or condiments since they could make you feel bad. The broth can be tossed white rice without problems, to eat.

After two or three days, it is advisable to give canned food, which has a large amount of liquid and a very intense smell that will make it impossible to resist. Even if you see it better after two more days, keep giving it a soft diet until all the symptoms disappear. The most common are: vomiting, diarrhea, apathy, stomach pain.

How to avoid gastroenteritis in dogs

Canine gastroenteritis appears due to one of these causes:

  • Eat expired or spoiled food.
  • Eat trash
  • Eat toys and other objects.
  • By contagion of bacteria or fungi.

To avoid it, you have to teach the dog that he can't eat anything from the ground or from the trash, for example, by saying a firm NO (but without shouting) every time we see that you intend to take something that you should not put in your mouth, or, better, by putting a dog treat right in front of the snout, and directing you to the place we want Upon arrival, we ask for a "feel", and once it feels, we give it to you.

We have to repeat this many times, but in the end we will get the dog to eat only what we give it.

Gastroenteritis in dogs and cats

Gastroenteritis is characterized by the sudden appearance of nausea, vomiting and / or diarrhea. Most cases are attributable to the intake of something inappropriate, and respond well to symptomatic treatment, although infectious diseases and ingestion of foreign bodies can also cause symptoms of gastroenteritis and require specific treatment.

Gastroenteritis is a general term that describes an irritation or inflammation of the digestive tract (stomach and intestine) characterized by the sudden appearance of vomiting and diarrhea.

In many cases, uncomplicated gastroenteritis is caused by the consumption of spoiled or contaminated food, and dogs tend to be affected more frequently due to their less selective eating habits and their tendency to ingest waste and litter. Often it is not possible to find out the real cause of gastroenteritis and most of the affected animals receive symptomatic treatment whose purpose is to mitigate clinical symptoms (vomiting and diarrhea) to improve their condition and accelerate recovery.

Some specific causes of gastroenteritis are the ingestion of foreign bodies, toxic substances, plants or irritant medications, or the action of intestinal parasites, viruses (parvovirus, etc.) or bacteria. In such cases, it is possible to issue a specific diagnosis of the cause after carrying out specific diagnostic tests.

A more serious condition is hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, in which the dog's vomit and feces appear stained with blood. Often its cause is not known exactly, but it is necessary to administer a supportive treatment quickly to avoid the deterioration of the animal's health.

In most cases, gastroenteritis is an acute condition that is characterized by sudden onset of vomiting and / or diarrhea. The affected dog usually vomits food and bile, although the vomit may also contain some blood. Affected animals usually show disinterest in food and may present discomfort, although this is not always the case. Fever and abdominal pain are not frequent. Nausea, which manifests itself in the animal in the form of abundant salivation, licking and retching, as well as lack of appetite and lethargy, are also observed in animals with gastroenteritis.

Depending on the clinical status and symptoms of the pet, it may be essential to go to the veterinarian's office. We should go to the vet when symptoms such as persistent or intense vomiting (more than 2 or 3 times a day), persistent or very heavy diarrhea, loss of appetite, lethargy, pink vomiting or red or black stools, or fever appear.

An important complication of vomiting and diarrhea is dehydration, which can be very dangerous for the animal's health and can cause death, especially in young animals.

Mild gastroenteritis can be diagnosed in view of vomiting and / or diarrhea without further complications. Unless the owner of the animal is certain that it has ingested an irritating substance, a foreign body (such as a toy) or an inappropriate medication, acute gastroenteritis is usually a diagnosis of exclusion that is reached from the background of the animal and after the physical examination carried out by the veterinarian.

If there is suspicion of anything other than mere uncomplicated gastroenteritis, or a hidden cause is presumed, tests may be performed to try to discover the source of the problem. These tests may consist of x-rays or ultrasound of the abdomen, or blood or stool tests (to diagnose the presence of intestinal parasites or a viral disease, such as coronavirus or parvovirus infection in puppies).

Blood tests are often necessary to evaluate diseases of the internal organs that may be the origin of the symptoms, as well as to assess the extent and possible complications of the disease.

The treatment of acute gastroenteritis is based almost exclusively on supportive treatment and on medication intended to combat the animal's symptoms, such as vomiting and diarrhea. Indeed, the control of vomiting and diarrhea is a priority to avoid the loss of liquids and mineral salts, which can lead to dehydration and endanger the life of the animal in a short time.

Antiemetics are medications used to inhibit vomiting, and some of them also allow you to control nausea. Some have been formulated specifically for dogs. Certain drugs can be given as an injection (e.g., under the skin), which is an advantage when the animal is vomiting, and then treatment with tablets can be continued orally.

Another supportive treatment consists of the administration of liquids and salts in quantity and balanced proportions (what is called fluid therapy), which can be carried out orally if the vomiting is controlled, or otherwise through an intravenous infusion, to which normally the pet must remain hospitalized.

The veterinarian may also prescribe a period of strict fasting followed by the intake of food in small quantities, along with a change in diet based on a gentle diet.

If the veterinarian suspects and discovers a hidden cause, he will establish a specific treatment to treat it, such as medications against intestinal worms (if any or suspects).

Most nonspecific gastroenteritis heal within a few days, provided that correct symptomatic management is established and fluid loss is controlled. It is essential to monitor the general condition of the animal during home treatment. If your pet's condition does not improve within 1 to 3 days or worsens or new symptoms appear (blood in stool, increased lethargy, weakness, fever, etc.), take it back to the veterinarian without delay.

Dogs are always looking for food and tend to eat everything they find, so teaching them from puppies to eating only from their bowl will be more than rewarded and avoid problems in the future.

Some cats and dogs do not tolerate sudden changes in feeding well, so, in the case of having to do so, it is essential to introduce new foods progressively over several days.

Regular vaccination of your pet will also protect against various serious diseases caused by viruses that, such as coronavirosis or parvovirosis, affect the digestive tract.

Finally, periodic deworming against intestinal worms at least 4 times a year with a broad-spectrum anthelmintic and flea control to prevent the appearance of certain intestinal worms (eg had it) Dipylidium) are essential in dogs and cats, both young and old.

Duration of gastroenteritis in dogs

The duration of gastroenteritis is situated around 2 and 3 days. Remember that gastroenteritis in dogs not mortal and that in some cases it is spread, so it is advisable to follow a strict hygiene routine when handling your bowel movements and personal belongings.

We recommend using enzymatic products for soil hygiene, since bleach or ammonia cause more desire to urinate in the dog and the vapors they emit can cause dizziness and discomfort.

3. Soft diet

Before reintroducing your usual feed it will be very advisable to offer you a soft diet based on boiled rice and chicken It will help settle your stomach. You can also get cans of gastrointestinal wet food for sale in veterinary clinics or pet products stores.

Home treatment for gastroenteritis in dogs

There are some home remedies for gastroenteritis in dogs that we can use to promote a faster recovery, however, in ExpertAnimal we always recommend consulting with the veterinarian:

  • Probiotics: They are administered when the dog is fasting and contain beneficial bacteria that help balance the intestinal flora. There are some products that also help stop diarrhea.
  • Chamomile infusion: we can manage small cant>

When is the time to go to the vet?

Mild gastroenteritis can be treated at home but occasionally complications can arise. If your case is one of the following, go immediately to your veterinarian to avoid complications:

  1. If your dogis apuppy, Gastroenteritis can be dangerous. It is always advisable to go to the vet to avoid dehydration immediately.
  2. If you observeblood In vomiting or stool it is a sign of complications.
  3. If thevomiting goes on More than 2 days and you see no improvement, your veterinarian will administer antihemetics that will inhibit vomiting either orally or intravenously.
  4. If the third or fourth day does not eat Normally your veterinarian can perform a blood test to confirm the cause and, in case of bacterial infection, you will be given antibiotics.
  5. If you notice abnormal symptoms which are not indicated in this article.

Remember that you should never administer antibiotics or any type of medication to your dog without first consulting with your veterinarian, you could put your life at risk with a wrong dose or an unfit drug.

This article is purely informative, at we have no power to prescribe veterinary treatments or make any kind of diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian in case he presents any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Gastroenteritis in dogs - Symptoms, treatment and durationWe recommend that you enter our section on Intestinal Problems.