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Pancreatitis

My 7 year old champion 4-H obedience/Showmanship female schnauzer was recently and unexpectedly diagnosed with pancreatitis. Her Lipase levels reflected 6000. Three days later her levels dropped to 5000, by the 5th day they jumped to almost 8000. After a long talk with the Vet, I elected to bring her home if she was able to hold food down.  Despite the high lipase level, the dog was perkier and feeling better, we were risking her survival, but it was  chance it or euthanize the dog. I  will be honest, the Vet bill was $1400 in just five days and I could not afford to go any further with hospitalization. The Vet felt that if the dog could eat, take her home and feed her Science Diet ID dog food, slowly building her intake level each day. On 11/14/07 another blood panel was ran, Lipase level dropped to 3258, glucose 66, Albumin 2.5. I can clearly see that there is high risk for the dog to get diabetes and other major disorders. Aside from the blood panel readings, she is doing well considering her predicament (she is happy and back to her old self). I have been informed to run the blood tests twice a month, but the cost of the frequency is out of my budget.  Intellectually I know she must be monitored and I am not going to deny her medical care, I just need an inbetween that would not jepardize the health of the dog any further. Can you please give me recommendations on the care of the dog and what to expect with her health in the future or should I euthanize her before her body fails. I know the ultimate decision is mine, I just don't want this wonderful dog to suffer nor do i want to cheat her out of a quality of life, if she can still have one. Please provide further advice.
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8 Comments Post a Comment
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172715_tn?1285498090
First of all let me say sorry to here of her illness.  It is so very hard to see our pets sick.  I believe you will know when it is time to end her suffering.  She will stop doing her favorite things, sleep more, eat and drink less.  You maybe even read it in her eyes.  Keep her as warm and comfortable as possible.  Take her lead on what she feels up to doing and let her stop whenever she wants to.  Give her your time mostly.  Fix a nice spot on the floor and lay down with her, pet her, talk soothingly to her and make eye contact.  If she is allowed to sleep on your bed you may have to help her up and down.  Prepare the bed for accidents or vomitting. Plastic mattress and pillow covers and old bedding.  Don't let her run loose outside or she may get confused and get hit or lost. Also there maybe a charity fund for helping with the vet bills or a vet clinic that will give you a break on the cost.  Ask your vet or call other vets.  Call the humane society for answers.  Don't let yourself go under financially and pray that God (if you believe) will take her so you won't have to make the hard desision of euthanizing her.  Don't put her on life support to keep her around, that would be selfish.   Best of luck to you and comfort for you and your loved one.
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254215_tn?1195096984
My dog just got over a bought with pancreatitis. It hurt her liver and she is on liver pills right now. She is totally back to her old self now though! So it is possible to recover.

Didn't you say your dog is back to her oldself? I don't understand why you would euthanize her if she is. Maybe I miss-read your post.....
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82861_tn?1333457511
Schnauzers, particularly mini-schnauzers, are notorious for pancreatitis.  As long as you can get her through acute attacks, you can probably manage the chronic symptoms for a long time.  My Aunt had a mini schnauzer that lived to be 19 years old with chronic panc.  :-)  As for testing, I'd probably just go by how the dog behaves and what symptoms are present.  If she looks bad, she probably IS bad.  After that, it's a matter of knowing when she needs hospitalization.  If she can't keep down water for a couple days, she'll need IV support.  Also, this condition is extremely painful, so when an acute attack comes around, she'll need IV pain meds as well.
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Avatar_m_tn
Six months ago our 13 year old mini schnauzer suffered dreadfully with a severe case of panreatitis and his discomfort and internal bleeding left no option but to put him down (such a terrible term!).  He had suffered from pancreatitis for a number of years and received treatment on each occasion but it seemed that with every new attack, his recovery response to treatment diminished.

We are currently contemplating taking on the responsibility of raising another mini to share our home and our emotions and of course we wish to do everything we can to ensure the longest, disease free life possible.  One of our efforts will be to feed him /her with a diet that doesn't provide the dog with a high fat content as I believe that this could be the genesis, along with genetics, for the incidence of panreatitis.

I am confused by the large number of dog foods, dry and wet, that are avaialbe for dogs and am not certain as to what % of fat would be considered 'Low'.  Also, does high/moderate protein go hand in hand to balance a low fat diet?  Are there any specific brands of dog food that are recommended for such a dietary regime?

If anyone can help me, along with any recommended food brands for my mini, I would be greatly appreciative.
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Avatar_dr_f_tn
Pancreatitis is not a life long diagnosis. We have wonderful success with the canine Pancreatitis patients in our veterinary clinic using a few natural therapies with a home made natural diet.

Take the burden off your dogs pancreas with full spectrum digestive enzymes. Re-balance your dogs digestive system with probiotics.

Consider a bland home made diet such as chicken, rice and peas.

If you would like to follow up on this in detail with me, that would be fine.

Dr Carol Osborne, DVM
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2361255_tn?1339611918
Hi, I found your post regarding pancreatitis. My 10 year old has that, cushings, and now kidney failure. I am having trouble coming up with a good diet, it seems that what is good for pancreatitis is bad for kidney's and vice versa. Could you recommend anything? I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you, Paula
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Avatar_f_tn
Low fat diet that is best for dogs is anything less than 6% fat. Canned food has the lowest percent of fat. Wellness Simple (salmon, not lamb) and Wellness Stews are what I feed my dog with pancreatitis. He has chronic smoldering pancreatitis and is 15 1/2 years old. He is a terrier mix but it's obvious there is schnauzer mixed in his bloodline. His lipase level was >6000 today but renal function is normal except BUN a tiny bit above normal. Creatinine was 1.7 (high end of normal). He is having normal stools and has a great appetite and is not vomiting. I feed him a little over 1/2 a cup (warmed or room temp canned food) 4-5 times a day so as to not overstimulate his pancreas. Next lab check is in
1 month.
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Avatar_f_tn
yes my dog is a diabetic 2 shots a day and also had inflammation of the pancteas.he was in icu for 13 days and it cost me 10,000.00 then he went blind.aother 3,000.00.It was all worth it to me.But he is losing weight and that worries me.He is onwd 40 dog food only.Vet said he could hae rice green beans for a filler but he is still hungry.He licks the floor ad stands in front of his food door.Not sure what to do.He gesevery 3 months for a curve another 200.00.
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