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Anorexia after Acute Pancreatitis in my dog

Hey there, I'm hoping someone can give me a hand with this. Last week, my 8 year old Siberian Husky went down with acute pancreatitis, which was probably triggered by gorging on dog food. (he got into the canister of food) He came home on Thursday, and on Friday appeared to be on track, but my dog sitter had trouble administering his antibiotic and pain meds. By the time I got home on Sunday he was lethargic and totally off his food.

I got him back on his meds and on Monday, he was taking small amounts of rice and chicken, but refused the prescription diet. He was happy and seemed back on track. This morning, he's back down and off his food again. I hate giving him meds on an empty stomach but he's refusing everything except his kibble, which obviously, he can't have.

I'll be taking him back to the vet but I know they're going to be obtuse about the food...(they did sell it to me) I'd love to get the poor boy back on track. I'm going to start him back on the Tramadol again and hope for the best. The good news is that he is drinking, but acts like food is just disgusting.

Any insight or suggestions?
7 Responses
675347 tn?1365460645
It can take a little while for the Pancreas to heal, and often a dog's instinct is to stay off food. While this does give the Pancreas a chance to heal, it can also be weakening, and difficult if the dog has to take medications with food!

It's not unusual for them to be picky after this or any other severe tummy upset of any kind. It's also not unusual for them not to like prescription diet food. Some do, but many don't.

Also if he is still on pain medication, it might mean he has some degree of breakthrough pain. There is nothing like pain to take away a dog's appetite. I also don't know this for certain -but the Tramadol might also have a slight effect on his appetite. My dog tolerated it well (after abdominal surgery) and it did not affect her appetite. But it's possible some dogs might have side effects. I don't know....

It's no good the vet being 'obtuse' about the diet food if the dog simply won't eat it! They are going to have to come up with suggestions.
However, he may begin to eat it if something could kick-start his appetite a little more. Has the vet tried appetite stimulants? Or anti-nausea medication? Anti-nausea meds can be given as an injection. In fact, I don't see why his antibiotic can't be given that way, just for a few days.

If he is considered fit now to eat solid food, then maybe you could try him on some home cooked things...There won't be many options, but I am sure there will be some. The food will have to be very bland. And might be things you wouldn't normally give him, but if you could get him to eat something it will help for now.
Chicken breast would be okay, boiled, and NO skin or fat.
White fish (not an oily fish) steamed.
Egg whites poached (if he will eat them. Good protein and no fat.)
Rice (which you are already giving him)
Barley (well cooked, which can take some time.)
White or sweet potato (boiled)
Cabbage (in small amounts, and cooked fairly soft)

Very small meals given often during the day, rather than one or two large meals.

You could always try to tempt him with some of the above ideas, then if he starts to chow down, sprinkle little bits of his prescription diet food in...

There is info. on home prepared food here:

1916673 tn?1420233270
Hi. You got a great and comprehensive answer from Ginger above and I absolutely agree with everything she has said. Great advice. I just wanted to pick up on the fact you mention your best friend was on kibble, which he liked to eat. I am (rather famously on here) very much against the use of kibble or any dry foods for dogs. Once your boy is back to full health, this would be a great opportunity to change his diet away from dry foods. If you want to know why I have this opinion, please read my article (link below):



675347 tn?1365460645
That is an excellent article Tony, and thank you very much for sharing the link with us.

It was wonderful also to see some beautiful pictures of your dear BB. Bless her.

Avatar universal
Does anyone know if it's safe to give my dog pumpkin for constipation? Awhile back he had pancreatitis and was put on a special diet. He also has back problems which makes it painful when he has to poop. I thought maybe the pumpkin would help with constipation.  But I don't want to give it to him if it makes the pancreatitis flare up.
1916673 tn?1420233270
Hi. As far as I am aware, pumpkin is excellent for pancreatitis, in small amounts. And - partly because it contains about 80% water - it's also good for constipation. Pancreatitis is often created by poor quality manufactured dog foods, so a home cooked diet is certainly the right way forward. It's also useful to reduce or eliminate completely animal fats, particularly things like beef, from the diet. Diets are also best devised that are low in fibre and easily digested. It can also be beneficial to feed small amounts more freuently, rather than one large meal all at once.

Avatar universal
Going on day 15 of hand feeding Rx food( he is not a fan of) with the occasional half eaten bowl of boiled low fat ground beef and steamed yams or rice. Granted the eating from a bowl has happened twice in 5 days. My once great eating dog is just not interested in food. He only will eat the perscription food from my husband's hand same with water.  Although I have seen him drink for a bowl a couple of times. Not often enough. He has improved don't get me wrong, at least he seems interested in food as opposed to vomiting and avoiding food all together.  Granted he is on vomit medication, acid reflux med and ulcer medication. I just keep reading everyone's experiences about there dog bouncing back to 5 days and here we are going week 3. can someone out there tell me that he is going to get better it just can take a little longer for other dogs.
1916673 tn?1420233270
Hi. I am a little concerned you have fed him ground beef. Even low-fat ground beef is actually high in fat. I would try to stick with the prescription diet for now, otherwise you may find getting your dog stable is an uphill struggle.

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675347 tn?1365460645
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