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Senior with CHF, suddenly diarrhea and lethargic
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Senior with CHF, suddenly diarrhea and lethargic

My dog is a 13 year old Chihuahua, and about 3 months ago was diagnosed with CHF. She takes Enalapril 2x a day, Lasix 2x a day, and Spironolactone 2x a day (all at the same time, every 12 hours). Her diet consists of baby food by syringe 3x a day (turkey, spinach and potatoes, amounting to 6oz a day), lamb lung treats (no sodium added), and Rachael Ray hard food out whenever she wants it. She also only drinks distilled water, and we add Eagle Pack fiber to the turkey.

Her last vet visit was great; her BUN levels were down (from mid-90 to low-30), her creatine levels had never been high, and all of her other blood work and blood pressure was normal. That was about 3 weeks ago.

For the last couple of days, she has been very lethargic, with loose stool and no appetite. I'm not sure whether this is just a little GI pain that will pass, or something more worrisome.

She's actually been just fine for several weeks. She's been eating normally, eager for treats, and full of energy. On Thursday, she was perfectly fine. Then on Friday, she was a bit weak, and had diarrhea; loose stool, ending with clear mucus. She had no appetite for the dry dog food, and even though she would eat the baby food, she rejected more than usual.

This continued on Saturday. She still had loose stool (no more clear mucus) and no appetite, and wasn't excited about going outside like she usually is. She would still go upstairs to use a pee mat on her own, though. On both Friday and Saturday, she's eaten about half as much baby food as usual.

By Sunday, she was even more lethargic. The loose stool (still no more clear mucus) and no appetite has continued, to the point that she's really done nothing but lay on the sofa with my wife all day. She'll hop down to drink water or go to the pee mat, but has rejected even her lamb lung treats. She has had several loose stools today, and after each one she seems more energetic, but not normal. The weakness is worse, though; twice, while trying to have a bowel movement, she has leaned forward and put her nose against the floor to hold herself up.

I've given her a few Pepcid doses (1/4 of a pill, recommended by the vet before), but these seem to not have any impact.

She also has a fast heart rate (even while resting), that has continued since Friday. There is no blood in her stool or urine, no coughing or sneezing, and no vomiting; also, her gums seem a normal pink. The only real symptoms are that she is very lethargic (progressively worse), and no appetite. She also seems to be drinking a normal amount of water, but usually only when one of us takes her to the bowl (at which time she drinks a lot). And when she's laying down, she tends to lay on her chest, but turns her hindquarters so that her hind legs are to the side; I'm guessing to keep pressure off of her stomach.

On our end, the only thing that has changed has been the colder nights. We began turning on the heat at night earlier this week, but I'm not sure if an allergen or dust would trigger a GI problem?

ANY advice would be appreciated. An email to the cardiologist just recommended that I bring her in for a checkup, but to be quite honest, I can't afford another $200-300 checkup if I'm just overreacting; I've spent over $3000 in the last 2 months, and while I would gladly spend all that I have for her, I'm actually getting close to that point.
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For anyone following this in the future, please refer to this offshoot thread:

http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Dogs/High-Liver-Enzyme--Low-Blood-Pressure/show/1362843

I did go back to the cardiologist, and she found that Pepper's blood pressure is now dangerously low; exactly the opposite of her problem before it being dangerously high. I suspected that the cardiologist was giving her too much high blood pressure medicine, but I never said or did anything.

We've taken her off of Enalapril (the blood pressure medication), but at this point, it would be no minor miracle for her to survive.

For anyone reading this in the future, I can honestly say that if you suspect that your dog's high blood pressure medicine is too high, then you would be wise to discuss it with the cardiologist.

Also, when you begin using Enalapril and Furosemide, go ahead and start giving your dog Milk Thistle (small dogs = 15% of the regular human dosage). Both of these medicines can destroy your dog's kidneys and liver, and it turns out that most dogs with heart failure did of kidney or liver disease, instead. So if your vet didn't recommend milk thistle along with these drugs, then I would honestly recommend finding another vet.
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Avatar_m_tn
My Bischon was doing reverse sneezing and was fine and the next week, his nose started gushing blood for almost 45 min as i rushed him to ER vet. it's been 6 days now and no more bleeding. I walk him on a leash in my own yard. Now our Cain Corso Mastiff/Pit Bull is sneezing blood from his nose too and lots of it.  What can be going on. I walk him on a leash in my own yard as well.  It seems too much of a coincidence to be one that both dogs have experienced this within a week of each other.
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