Dogs and cats explore their surroundings with their mouths, licking and tasting nearly anything they encounter. Instinctively, they will also eat whenever food is available. Occasionally, our little friends make mistakes and overeat or eat more than they should. When your pet has dined well but not wisely, digestive or gastrointestinal issues can range from a simple upset stomach to more severe cases of indigestion or food poisoning. In the worst possible case, a pet can find something genuinely toxic and have a chance of actual poisoning.
In checking your pet for signs of digestive problems, you should be alert for various symptoms. If your pet belches, burps, pass gas or has excessive stomach rumbling, it could be a sign of simple indigestion or discomfort that will pass with time. On the other hand, it could also be a symptom of more serious gastrointestinal issues that bear watching.
More severe signs can include loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, or weight loss over a longer term. Some of these issues are transitory but can also be signs of serious problems developing. More significant symptoms can include dry heaving without vomiting, dehydration, blood in the stool, or straining to pass waste. These symptoms are important and should be looked at by a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Conditions besides diet or overeating can cause digestive problems. For example, parasites like worms can cause problems with digestion. So can illnesses caused by bacteria or viruses. Changes in diet, stress, or finding an inedible object can also cause digestive distress.
Common signs of poisoning in pets can include changes in behavior, like instability in walking or standing, or changes in behavior, like hyperactivity or lethargy, blood in the stool, vomiting, seizures, or tremors. Additionally, unusual objects in the stool (especially green things, which might be evidence of rat poison) and impressive bruises or bleeding on the gums, nose, or groin can be signs of poison.
Any of these symptoms should be examined by a veterinarian on an emergency basis. At White Marsh Animal Hospital, we are familiar with treating pet digestive issues and are prepare to help you through any crisis or emergency.
Schedule an Appointment with Our Veterinarian
White Marsh Animal Hospital is committed to providing the best possible veterinary care and service to White Marsh, MD, and eastern Baltimore County residents. If you live in or around White Marsh, contact us at (410) 335-8400 to schedule an appointment. Our veterinarian treats our patients and the people in their lives with the best care, delivered with compassion, respect, and skill. We would love to meet you and your animal companions to show you what we offer.