Canine Inflammatory Bowel Disease

One of the tasks any dog ​​owner will tell you about do not The relish is cleaning up a dog’s vomit or diarrhea. Dogs can experience episodes of vomiting and diarrhea for a variety of reasons, but if your dog suffers from both conditions for weeks on end, they may have a gastrointestinal disorder called irritable bowel disease (IBD).

What is IBD in dogs?

Like people, irritable bowel disease or IBD in dogs is not actually a disease process but a syndrome.One syndrome are multiple symptoms that occur together and thus characterize a specific disease process, while disease is a specific process in the body characterized by a specific cause and specific symptoms. Although these definitions sound very similar, the exact pathogenic process of some syndromes is unclear. IBD as a syndrome is characterized by chronic irritation to your dog’s gastrointestinal tract, but the underlying cause of this irritation can be many things. This inflammation disrupts the dog’s gut’s ability to properly digest and absorb nutrients, leading to general signs of malabsorption and gastrointestinal distress.

What Causes IBD in Dogs?

The real underlying cause of your dog’s IBD may include infection, allergies, immune system abnormalities, or even genetics.Infectious agents that can cause IBD may include bacteria such as salmonella and Escherichia coli, protozoa (single-celled organisms) such as Giardiaand intestinal parasites.Allergens that cause IBD in dogs are most commonly found in protein sources, not wheat and other carbohydrates

What are the symptoms of IBD in dogs?

Your dog’s IBD will vary depending on which part of his gastrointestinal tract is primarily affected. If your dog’s IBD primarily affects their stomach, their main symptom will be vomiting. If their IBD primarily affects their gut, their main symptom will be diarrhea, with or without blood or mucus. If your dog’s IBD is more chronic, you may start to see weight loss, decreased appetite, lethargy (more lying), or fever as the condition progresses. However, with some dogs, you may actually see an increase in appetite, which eats voraciously in an attempt to compensate for poor intestinal absorption of food.

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How Is IBD Diagnosed in Dogs?

IBD can only be definitively diagnosed by microscopic examination of a biopsy taken from the lining of your dog’s intestine. A veterinary pathologist will look for inflammatory changes, a hallmark of IBD, in your dog’s intestinal tissue samples. Obviously, obtaining biopsy samples is an invasive procedure, and general anesthesia is usually required to obtain them through abdominal surgery. If your dog visits the veterinarian with vomiting or diarrhea, your veterinarian will not schedule surgery for your dog the next day, even if it is chronically intermittent. Instead, your veterinarian may start by doing more basic tests, such as blood work, X-rays, and looking at a stool sample. While these tests cannot diagnose IBD, they can rule out other common causes of gastrointestinal symptoms in dogs, such as pancreatitis, gastroenteritis, colitis, and intestinal foreign bodies. If none of these tests are significant, your veterinarian may choose to use “standard GI therapy” to treat your dog’s GI discomfort, including fluid therapy (whether administered intravenously through an IV catheter or injected subcutaneously under the skin) ), medication and guidance on a light diet at home. If this does not completely resolve your dog’s gastrointestinal symptoms, then your veterinarian may begin diagnosis and treatment of IBD.

Treatment of IBD

Unfortunately, like people, there is no cure for IBD in dogs. Instead, your veterinarian will develop a treatment plan to manage your dog’s IBD symptoms. The treatment plan can include medication, a special diet, or a combination of the two. Your veterinarian may prescribe a corticosteroid (such as prednisone) and/or antibiotics (such as metronidazole) to your dog to help with inflammation and bacterial overgrowth in your dog’s gut. They may also recommend a special diet, either homemade or prescribed, to relieve your dog’s gastrointestinal symptoms while providing a complete and balanced diet. Your dog’s treatment plan may have to be adjusted based on your dog’s response. This is because not only does IBD affect dogs differently, but because the causative agent of IBD in one dog may be different from that in another dog, and treatment for one cause may not be the same as treatment for another.

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How to Prevent IBD in Dogs

Unfortunately, since there are many causes of canine IBD, there really is no reliable way to prevent it. Occasional vomiting and diarrhea are probably things your dog shouldn’t be getting into, but if your dog has been struggling with either of these for a while, check with your veterinarian about what might be causing your dog’s symptoms reason.

Canine Inflammatory Bowel Disease
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