Dogs Community
10.3k Members
Avatar universal

Dog Wont Eat/Very Lethargic

My Yellow lab is 6 months old. She is very lethargic and wont eat hardly any food. She had kennel cough about 20 days ago and finished her medicine for it. She also had coccidiosis. She finished her medicine for that also. She is sicker in the morning and sometimes will not even move. Literally it looks like she is dying. When she does play a little she gets tired out extemely fast. We give her pedialyte sometimes, but that just covers it up. She will usually eat a dry food once then will never eat the same kind again. Its almost like once one kind of food hurts her stomach she wont try it again. We have tried Canidae, Califorinia Natural, Evo, and Purina food. Now the only thing she eats are  nibbles of eggs, carrots, and brown rice. She has had to have an IC from the vet twice for not drinking. We were thinking that maybe protein could hurt her stomach/liver?

Also, btw, she came from a very dirty rescue place.
9 Responses
82861 tn?1333453911
Oh the poor little girl.  She's surely been through more than her share of misery in her young life, and I commend you for everything you've done.  You have to keep her hydrated no matter what, so keep up with the pedialyte.  

Proteins and fats are harder to digest, so that may be why she's sticking to carbs.  Not uncommon when a dog is nauseated.  Did the vet give her anything like reglan to treat nausea?  Chopped up hard boiled eggs are a good choice since they're more easily digested.  You might try using only half the yolk at first.  

If your vet appears to have given up on her, then find a new one.  If she hasn't been examined since she received her last round of medicine, then get her in ASAP.

I would be just as alarmed as you are if she were my puppy.  I'm hoping that our member Ghilly will be along soon as she has lots of vet tech experience.  Also, try posting your question to Dr. Cheng on the Ask a Vet forum here at Med Help.  There's a daily question limit, so keep trying until you get it posted.
Avatar universal
More than one vet has pretty much given up.
441382 tn?1452810569
Nothing is more frustrating than not being able to figure out what is going on with a sick pet.  Have the vets done complete blood panels on her?  Have they done ultrasounds of her stomach and intestinal tract?  Some nagging little thing in the back of my brain is telling me that this puppy has an intussesseption.  An intussesseption happens when one section of the intestine telescopes back over itself, the best way to picture it would be to look at a stocking.  If you pull it on, start to pull it off, and then pull it back on again, that part where it doubles up over itself is what happens to the intestines in an intussesseption.  It can sometimes be found during an ultrasound or MRI, but because of the way the gut winds and twists and turns in the abdominal cavity, it is sometimes just not seen because of where it is located.  Sometimes the only way to find them is the old-timey method of the exploratory surgery.  

Like I said, I don't know why, but no matter what other causes for your puppy's behavior I can come up with, something in the back of my brain keeps going back to an intussesseption.  

Avatar universal
I dont really know what an intussesseption is but next time we take her to the vet (hopefully soon) I wil ask. We are waiting to get a blood panel too because it costs so much. When we take her back to the vet we will get a basic blood panel.
441382 tn?1452810569
The blood panel is essential to making a diagnosis.  It will tell the vet if, among other things, the liver and kidney values are OK.  It's not uncommon at all for young dogs to have liver or kidney problems.  Juvenile kidneys, which is a condition where the kidneys don't grow with the dog, but stay the size of about a 12 or 14 week old puppy.  What happens, naturally, is that the kidneys are not large enough to filter the poisons from a larger dog's body, and the animal slowly goes downhill.

Let me ask you a few questions.  What do your puppy's gums look like?  Are they a bright pink?  Or are they a muddy, pinkish-brown color?  What color are the linings of her ears and her belly?  Are they whitish or do they have a yellow cast to them?  

Do everything in your power to get that bloodwork done, because that will tell the vet everything that he or she needs to know, and even if there is no clear-cut diagnosis that can be made from it, it will at least point them in the right direction and tell them where to look.   As an example, if a dog's leg is dangling limply and swollen to four times its normal size, unless the vet wants to see exactly where a break is or how many pieces the bone is broken into, an x-ray is basically unnecessary.  However, when it comes to systemic problems, without bloodwork, arriving at a diagnosis is no more accurate than shaking a wrapped package and trying to guess what's in it.

Avatar universal
[QUOTE]Let me ask you a few questions.  What do your puppy's gums look like?  Are they a bright pink?  Or are they a muddy, pinkish-brown color?  What color are the linings of her ears and her belly?  Are they whitish or do they have a yellow cast to them?[/QUOTE]

Gums are pink, but not pale or bloody or brownish

Her inner ear is light pink. The vet did find a slight yeast infection in her ears but he said it was no big deal and wouldnt cause anything else

Her belly is pinkish but more on the whiter side


Also after researching the intussesception a little more, I 'inspected' my dog. I did fin a small lump that felt like a knot.
Avatar universal
I forgot to say, could the 'knot' shaped thing just be from her spading? Or can it be serious?
82861 tn?1333453911
Just a quick comment on the "knot".  It's probably scar tissue from her spaying, but that also makes me wonder if that scar tissue isn't causing the equivalent of an intussusseption.  (Forgive my spelling on that one.  LOL!)  Scar tissue can form on the nearby intestines and cause an obstruction.  Dogs aren't particularly prone to overdeveloping scar tissue, but it's a possibility.  It won't show up on imaging studies or lab work either.  If everything else has been done (labs, imaging, etc.) I just might think about asking my vet to do an exploratory surgery.  Some clinics have laparascopic equipment which is much easier on the dog recovery-wise, but can be hard to find outside specialized referral hospitals.
1144588 tn?1261323737
Our dog had some very similar symptoms. Our vet told us that we could keep bringing her in for 250-400 a visit or just suck it up and take him to an internist and finally find out for sure what the deal was.
We did just that and after a very conservative list of tests (meaning they'd start at the to of the list, being least invasive and cost... to the last test, which was an endoscopy. Our luck,we had to get to the endoscopy and she found the problem The cells/biopsy found that the dog has IBD. That plus allergies, led us to the food: Hills Prescription Ultra Z/D. We also have him on a maintenance dose of Metronitizole (every other day). If it flairs up because he got into something he shouldn't have... or a well meaning person gives him a table scrap... we up the dose to daily for about a week or so... then back to ever other day.

Hope this is helpful.


PS: We also give our dog allergy shots for skin problems. He's a silly mess sometimes, bit at least we have things under control, know how to deal with problems that arise and don't have to run to the vet every couple to three weeks, dropping a fortune each time.
Have an Answer?
Top Dogs Answerers
675347 tn?1365460645
United Kingdom
974371 tn?1424653129
Central Valley, CA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Members of our Pet Communities share their Halloween pet photos.
Like to travel but hate to leave your pooch at home? Dr. Carol Osborne talks tips on how (and where!) to take a trip with your pampered pet
Ooh and aah your way through these too-cute photos of MedHelp members' best friends
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Here’s how your baby’s growing in your body each week.
These common ADD/ADHD myths could already be hurting your child