2 Year Old Shepherd, Vomiting & Bloody Watery Diarrhea - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-13-2012, 09:30 PM Thread Starter
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2 Year Old Shepherd, Vomiting & Bloody Watery Diarrhea


Let me start by saying I love my dog Morres and I wish him all the best in a very speedy recovery.

A few days ago, the family dog, Morres, a beautiful 2 year old German Shepherd, was left unattended in the backyard. My father and I were home but as soon as I noticed that he was out there alone, I knew this was strike 1. I called and I called but no answer so I went to look where he is and he was standing by the fence gate, I unlocked it and brought him back into the house. I thought he ate something because he kept on licking his lips and his breathe smelt kind of minty?... I cannot describe the smell but it wasn't that bad but my father does have mint in the backyard so its possible that he ate some while digging holes. Our dog likes to dig holes if he is left unattended for more then 10 minutes. I believe its his way of saying, "oh, you don't want to play with me 24/7? Ok, I'll ruin something of yours then!"

Yesterday he didn't eat at all but drank a little bit of water here and there. I went out with my family for some dinner and once we came back two hours later, there were two puddles of vomit. Looked like water with a slight tint of yellow and some white bubbles. Our dog was happy to see us home and behaving the way he usually does but I had a feeling something was up. He only vomits when he eat something that he shouldn't, which I mentioned earlier that he did a few days ago but I did not catch him in the act. I only saw the guilty but satisfied look he had on his cute face as if he was saying, "hehe, look! I ate something and you weren't there to stop me, now what are you going to do!!?" As if this is a big game to him or something but he is definitely not winning at this game.

I went with him for a short walk before bed time and he had brown watery diarrhea and at that point I knew it was too late but he was still acting like his normal self, jumping around, wanting to play and well alert. We all went to sleep at 9pm and at 4am he woke us up in order to go outside again, another watery brown diarrhea run and vomited in the house quite a lot this time right after the short early morning walk. Same thing around 9am this morning and our appointed with the vet was at 10:20am

We took him to the a different vet this morning as his usual vet unavailable today. He still seemed in fairly good shape, wagging his tail and trying to smell all of the other dogs. The vet checked him out, took a blood sample to run test, listened and felt his stomach, checked his teeth and checked his temperature. He did not have a fever to being with and he still no fever has been present. The blood tests came out good, nothing strange present so the vet came him a shot to stop the vomiting and prescribed some antibiotics, Metronidazole 250mg and Famotidine 20mg.

While waiting for the blood test results, Morres was really thirsty so we asked for a bowl of water. He drank about 2-3cups of water and before the vet came out to inform us of the blood results and to administer a shot to stop the vomiting, we were told only give him about a 1/2 cup - 1cup of water every hour as hes vomiting the water out about 20-30 minutes after he drinks. He gets the shot, we pay for the visit and medication and about 3 minutes into the very smooth and slow car ride back home, he vomits the water that he drank at the vets office.

We give him one dose of the Metronidazole once we arrived at home and about 2 hours later, he wants to go outside and this time its red watery diarrhea. It looked like beet soup or beet juice coming out of his end. I did not witness this as I quickly went to the near by grocery store. So when I got the phone call to hurry back home, we all went back to the vets office.

The vet that we saw in the morning already left for the day but another one was available so she pulled up the file went over it with us and checked Morres out again. Listened and felt his stomach, looked at his teeth and checked his rear end. Her finger had some type of substance that appeared to be little bit of blood but not 100% sure. It was dark red.
The vet told us to leave him at the office and they will give him an IV, do some xrays and provide him with another antibiotic injection, the vet mentioned the name but I cannot recall, its something that is similar to penicillin. What kind of bothers me at this point is that neither doctors took the thermometer or glove with a little bit of bloody substance under a microscope to see if there is some type of bacteria, they just assumed it could be something else. I know that the regular doctor would do that first to rule out some type of bacterial infection and to know what antibiotics to prescribe.

So we're out $700 dollars and A LOT of stress. This is my first dog and I'm not exactly sure whats going on. My parents have had German Shepherd dogs before but that was back in Poland and it was a completely different lifestyle for that dog. They had a adopted German Shepherd before Morres as well but he rarely got sick. He was an old one with many issues due to his unknown past but we gave him a very good home and a great 5 years before he passed away overnight many years ago. I was too young and was not liked by the previous Shepherd so I do not remember details like I do this Morres. Morres is kind, loving, friendly to everyone (except cats, squirrels and anything else that hes able to chase in the backyard) and a overall very happy dog, which loves our family and we love him just as much if not more!

I believe he is dehydrated since he can't keep his water down and he must have something sitting in his stomach thats causing all of his. I said my goodbyes if this is the day that he has to leave us and enter the next world of doggy Heaven. I'm not too sure why I am typing this as we're doing everything we possibly can. I'm hoping that the care he is currently getting at this very moment is excellent care and that he returns to us in terrific shape. The vet mentioned that he might need to come back to have more IV if his conditions do not improve from 3:30pm-7:30pm and if thats the case, he will need to keep the PCV in his arm instead of removing and it and applying it another time and on another arm, which will only end up stressing our beloved dog even more and also costing us another $1 They do not keep dogs overnight as no one is able to stay with the animals overnight but thankfully we live 5 minutes away from the vets office. So we were told to pick him up between 7-7:30pm, as the vet office closes at 7:30pm today, and watch over him during the night. We will see what the conditions are like when I pick him up within an hour and hopefully he will be back to normal, atleast so he stops vomiting and the bloody watery diarrhea.

So I guess what I'm trying to ask is, has anyone had any similar experiences with their German Shepherds? I have to watch over him like a hawk tonight while he sleeps, if he even sleeps, if he has to have the PCV left in for more IV tomorrow morning if his symptoms do not clear up by now and/or overnight. I'm just worried I guess and I have no one to turn to. Sorry for being kind of so... emotional about it? Just concerned I guess. I want the best for him but this is a learning process for me. For those of you who are religious, semi-religious or even 1/10 religious, may you please keep my Morres in yours prayers tonight? Every little bit of help counts. I know I'm kind of making it sound like hes dying but like I said, i said my goodbye and apologized if I did not give him the life he deserves so if he does not pull through, I won't have any regrets and he'll be in a much better place.

Thanks for reading/listening my uber long story of the day.

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Last edited by mikeschmeee; 11-13-2012 at 09:38 PM. Reason: forgot to mention microscope
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-13-2012, 09:48 PM
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I have not dealt with anything like this but hope your dog gets better fast. I do understand how hard this is for you, please update us.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-13-2012, 09:52 PM
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Hoping he pulls through...he has his age and his strength on his size to recover just fine.

Onyx got sick a couple years ago and was vomiting blood(red puddles) I stopped feeding her but let her have water and the water kept irritating her gut. My vet said to stop free access to water, only about a 1/4 cup ever so often to keep her from dehydrating and of course no food for at least 12 hours.
Then started a bland diet of cooked chicken and double boiled rice. A half hour before I fed her a small portion of the bland diet, I gave her two slippery elm bark (opened)capsules mixed with a spoonful of plain yogurt, that helps to heal the gut and soothe the digestive tract. I did this for three days and she was just fine....I continued w/ the cooked diet for another couple days before returning her to her raw diet.
My vet chose not to see her after I called her because Onyx gets extremely agitated and stressed when at the vet. It would have added to her already compromised situation.
My vet is only a couple minutes away so if I did need emergency care, she was ready to help.
Think positive!
If you need to get some slippery elm, most grocery stores will carry it in the pharmacy, holistic/herbal section. I always keep it on hand in case of diarrhea or illness(for us humans too!)

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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-13-2012, 09:58 PM
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 12:30 AM Thread Starter
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I just picked Morres up from the vets office around 7:23pm and he looks MUCH BETTER! You can see it in his eyes! He had four x-rays of his rib cage and stomach area and everything seems to be in order. He did have a high red blood count which was 55 but since the IV and some medication, its back to a more stable number of 40. The vet cannot determine the cause of whatever is going on, she mentioned that it could be something to due with pancreatitis, hemorrhoid digestive something, some other crazy acronym for scientific names that I have never heard of and she also mentioned that it could be something that he ate, which it most likely is. He doesn't have any serious condition because his blood work came out clean and everything in the x-rays looked normal. He had two little air bubbles of gas but the vet said this is nothing to worry about.

Everything seems to be in order but he still has the catheter from the IV attached to his arm just in case if he needs fluids through an IV again in the morning. That's if Morres vomits or has bloody diarrhea overnight. The vet said she would not be surprised if this happens but told us not to worry unless Morres is vomiting and/or bloody diarrhea profusely and if that happens I can take him to the overnight emergency and if this is needed Morres is already set up for IV and they can monitor him. I'm hoping everything will be good overnight.

If everything is great by the morning we can give him a little bit of boiled rice and some chicken to get some food in his system but offer him a 1/2 cup of water or an ice cube or two every hour or so to keep him hydrated. Morres had a liter and a half of fluids through IV and he just had a big healthy pee before I brought him back home. I'm really happy that he seems better and hopefully he'll be 100% very soon, get his catheter removed in the morning and start playing around the way he usually does but with much more supervision on my end as I do not want to go through something like this again. As you might have guessed, Morres always likes to get into some type of trouble.

So for now, I'm just going to keep a very close eye on him overnight. Currently he is relaxing on his couch and looks like hes about to catch some sleep so I'll be sitting beside him all night.

Thank you for the support, you guys are awesome! I'll definitely keep you all update. Here is a photo of my buddy as of this very moment. He decided to move from the couch to the top of the stairs as my brother was leaving to say farewell until next time!

Its not the greatest picture since its from a camera phone and the colours were ruined so I changed it to black and white. You can see his little bandage that covers his catheter from the IV. He's not touching it at all which is a very good thing!

Here's a little video of him running around from last years little snowfall, which he absolutely loved!

Thanks again for everything guys. I'll let you know how it goes tomorrow morning and if anything happens overnight.

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Last edited by mikeschmeee; 11-14-2012 at 12:34 AM.
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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 12:30 AM
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It sounds a bit like "HGE" or "Hemorrhagic GastroEnteritis"

But I'm not familiar with it, really.
Will be praying he gets better soon.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 01:16 AM
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do you think there is anything significant about the dog's breath smelling minty? Did he eat some minty chewing gum which may have had xylitol or toothpaste with xylitol ? This sweetener is toxic to dogs , vomitting, lethargy , and bloody diarrhea all being symptoms .
Make sure he can't get in to garbage that has this substance.
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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 01:22 AM
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Hm...minty gum or mints with xylitol could have done some of it...the main symptom, the first you'd see, is vomiting and loss of coordination, though. Low blood sugar causes them to act "drunk", and even have seizures.

Later symptoms are liver failure.

Xylitol Toxicity in Dogs | VCA Animal Hospitals
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 09:54 AM
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According to this link he would have had to eat a lot of gum to go into liver failure...however, evey dog is diff. and a pre-existing condition could hold true with minimal amount...so I cut and pasted the part about oral dental care brands so that people WILL read the labels and be aware that just because it is bottled and sold on a store shelf, doesn't mean it is perfectly safe...the same holds true for food and treats.

01 Xylitol Poisoning - VeterinaryPartner.com - a VIN company!
What about Xylitol Containing Mouthwashes for Pets?
The oral health benefits of xylitol do seem to hold true for dogs if appropriately low doses of xylitol are used.
Several products have been marketed for canine oral care, specifically for dogs that do not tolerate other methods of dental home care. These product is mixed in drinking water to provide antibacterial benefits. Aquadent® by Virbac comes in a 500cc (half liter) bottle that contains a total of 2.5 grams of xylitol as well as in small packets. Breathalyser Plus® from Ceva is similarly packaged. If you follow the dosing instructions on the bottle or packet, there should be no problems.

He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion. - Unknown
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 10:10 AM
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The symptoms do not fit. We've had a dog w/xylitol poisoning and you'd have known about it right away, even at low doses. The main symptom (other than an initial vomit) was "acting drunk", she lost control of her entire back end. She also started sinking into a coma within 15 min. of the loss of coordination.
She had elevated liver levels the next day but it went down with no permanent damage...we suspect the culprit was already chewed gum that had enough xylitol to crash her blood sugar, but not cause permanent liver damage.
Xylitol causes a dog's body to "think" it's been od'ed with sugar, so their body sends out mass amounts of insulin. However, their blood sugar isn't raised so the insulin utilizes all their natural blood glucose and they crash, causing the above symptoms. We caught our dog just in time to avoid seizures, etc. and got her blood sugar back up.

That said, it is worth mentioning to the vet, just in case. But (IME) the symptoms don't fit...if there was an issue and xylitol was indeed ingested, you'd be looking for symptoms of liver failure now.

**We do not allow xylitol in the house, now, and I'd recommend any dog owner avoid that gum coming into the house. It's also in toothpastes (some) and other products that are artificially sweetened so READ LABELS.

Last edited by msvette2u; 11-14-2012 at 10:13 AM.
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