Bloody vomit and diarrhea, 6 month old GSD - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 04:26 PM Thread Starter
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Bloody vomit and diarrhea, 6 month old GSD

I'll try to keep this brief, just left my pup at the vet.

Sunday ate great, fussing with ears (ears look great)
Monday 7am, solid stool no appetite, skipped breakfast
Monday 10am, white foamy vomit
Monday 12pm, diarrhea, just pinkish water with white bougainvillea flowers shooting out

diarrhea and vomiting continue thru today

Today 11:30 vomit has red mucousy blood in it, I'm at the vet by 12:30

She hasn't eaten since Sunday night, but has been drinking water.

The vet wants to check everything, pancreas, blood work, x-rays, anti-vomit injection, IV hydrate, $1,100 estimate before I left.

This vet used to be amazing, but got bought by a large corporate vet group (VCA). Most people say they are a huge rip-off now (but the vets are very good).

Any advice? I have approved everything except xrays (for now).

I can't afford a several thousand dollar vet bill every time she eats something in the garden and gets a stomach ache, but I, of course, would do for her anything that is needed.

Crappy position to be in with a sick pup and a vet that your unsure of their "best interest"...

Last edited by Solamar; 05-16-2017 at 04:29 PM.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 04:39 PM
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I went to a VCA here in Pittsburgh and was unhappy with the experience. They were VERY pushy about procedures and made me feel guilty if I didn't want to do a $1500 endoscopy ("You OWE him an endoscopy.")

Then again, bloody vomit and diarrhea especially in a puppy, sound like a pretty true emergency so you did the right thing by bringing her in asap.

So it sounds like she ate some flower in the garden?? And the vet wants to "check everything"?? what are they looking for? I agree with her not needing an X ray if the problem is toxic flowers. I looked around a little and found that bougainvillea is listed as "mildly toxic" to dogs with symptoms presenting as diarrhea and vomiting and GI upset. If they are giving her anti-vomiting drugs that might actually be really bad - wouldn't you think she should throw up everything. Can someone else weigh in???
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 04:51 PM
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Can they give you a listing of priority for the diagnositics? I.e., if test #1 one says X, we don't need to run the other one, so let's run test #1 first.

Really good vets can figure out how to do that, instead of running everything at once, if the dog is stable.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liffey View Post
I went to a VCA here in Pittsburgh and was unhappy with the experience. They were VERY pushy about procedures and made me feel guilty if I didn't want to do a $1500 endoscopy ("You OWE him an endoscopy.")

Then again, bloody vomit and diarrhea especially in a puppy, sound like a pretty true emergency so you did the right thing by bringing her in asap.

So it sounds like she ate some flower in the garden?? And the vet wants to "check everything"?? what are they looking for? I agree with her not needing an X ray if the problem is toxic flowers. I looked around a little and found that bougainvillea is listed as "mildly toxic" to dogs with symptoms presenting as diarrhea and vomiting and GI upset. If they are giving her anti-vomiting drugs that might actually be really bad - wouldn't you think she should throw up everything. Can someone else weigh in???
Thanks for the input. I have had bad experience with big corp dental offices, afraid vets are going the same direction.

My pup puts everything in her mouth and after researching toxic plants, we have most of them. I'm hoping it's just the bougainvillea, but the blood doesn't make sense to me.

I asked the same question about the anti-vomit drug, the vet said it would only be used if the pancreas was causing the nausea.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magwart View Post
Can they give you a listing of priority for the diagnositics? I.e., if test #1 one says X, we don't need to run the other one, so let's run test #1 first.

Really good vets can figure out how to do that, instead of running everything at once, if the dog is stable.
I'd say she's quite stable, good spirits, still just wants to play ball. No abdominal pain.

Per the vet - Priority is blood work and pancreas test to look for toxins, if nothing then xrays for abnormalities.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 05:18 PM
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For what it's worth, my dog with ongoing GI issues sometimes throws up foamy stuff with flecks of semi-congealed blood. General consensus seems to be that blood flecks are an indication of inflammation. But I would always worry and be on the safe side if you're dealing with bloody vomit or stool. Good luck!
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Solamar View Post
I'll try to keep this brief, just left my pup at the vet.

Sunday ate great, fussing with ears (ears look great)
Monday 7am, solid stool no appetite, skipped breakfast
Monday 10am, white foamy vomit
Monday 12pm, diarrhea, just pinkish water with white bougainvillea flowers shooting out

diarrhea and vomiting continue thru today

Today 11:30 vomit has red mucousy blood in it, I'm at the vet by 12:30

She hasn't eaten since Sunday night, but has been drinking water.

The vet wants to check everything, pancreas, blood work, x-rays, anti-vomit injection, IV hydrate, $1,100 estimate before I left.

This vet used to be amazing, but got bought by a large corporate vet group (VCA). Most people say they are a huge rip-off now (but the vets are very good).

Any advice? I have approved everything except xrays (for now).

I can't afford a several thousand dollar vet bill every time she eats something in the garden and gets a stomach ache, but I, of course, would do for her anything that is needed.

Crappy position to be in with a sick pup and a vet that your unsure of their "best interest"...
Sorry your pup isn't feeling the best

Did you/the vet call poison control about the plant, or were they able to rule out the plant as a cause?

Your vet wants the best for your dog. VCA hospitals are expensive (in comparison), yet thorough. Just keep communication very clear.

Vet wants to rule out pancreatitis, this is usually done via a snap test. Pancreatitis can be nasty very quickly, and even kill.

Blood work can tell many things. In the very least, how dehydrated she is, what electrolytes are off balance, etc, etc, ETC.

Xrays can rule out yet more things, or help zero in on a diagnosis.

Anti-vomit injection is given to well...stop the vomiting = stop fluid loss and make dog more comfortable.

IV hydration is the best way to keep your dog hydrated and keep the electrolytes balanced. Hydration by mouth is always best, but with vomiting/diarrhea the body needs some extra help until the cause can be fixed.

Did they send out a fecal test to rule out parasites (worms/coccidia/giardia)?
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 07:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liffey View Post
I went to a VCA here in Pittsburgh and was unhappy with the experience. They were VERY pushy about procedures and made me feel guilty if I didn't want to do a $1500 endoscopy ("You OWE him an endoscopy.")

Then again, bloody vomit and diarrhea especially in a puppy, sound like a pretty true emergency so you did the right thing by bringing her in asap.

So it sounds like she ate some flower in the garden?? And the vet wants to "check everything"?? what are they looking for? I agree with her not needing an X ray if the problem is toxic flowers. I looked around a little and found that bougainvillea is listed as "mildly toxic" to dogs with symptoms presenting as diarrhea and vomiting and GI upset. If they are giving her anti-vomiting drugs that might actually be really bad - wouldn't you think she should throw up everything. Can someone else weigh in???
If it is the plant that is doing this...

The vet will want to stop the vomiting and diarrhea, as it = fluid loss, which can be life threatening. The dog has already not only vomited up the plant, but is now "clinical" = showing symptoms...in which case making and/or letting the dog continue vomiting is not helpful to them.

The symptom (v/d) are what makes the plant a problem, right? So they stop it. They also often give activated charcoal solution (if indicated) to bind to the rest that is still in the GI tract.

The vet will most likely keep a watchful eye on her as a whole dog, and be careful to watch for problems caused by either the plant ingestion or v/d.

I'm sure they will take good care of her
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Update:

She came home last night. I have never received so many kisses from her as I did when I got her from the vet

Diagnosis - Gastroenteritis associated with dietary indiscretion

She looked like a camel when I picked her up from the subcutaneous fluid. I'd guess they injected a liter+ of fluid into her shoulder.
About 3am she told me she needed to go outside, diarrhea at first, then a small solid poop. She ate a tiny bit this morning but is acting 100% normal.

So,
- I know she ate Bougainvillea flowers (saw them shoot out her backside)
- I know Bougainvillea flowers are slightly toxic and cause vomiting and diarrhea
- I did not know that strained vomiting can rupture blood vessels in the GI tract causing blood in the vomit and stool
- an OTC Pepcid AC dose is what she needed to feel better

The lab results came back all good, they hydrated her and gave her a stomach acid reducer and sent her home with Carafate / Sucralfate Tabs (soothe GI tract) and Metronidazole. I respectfully argued against the Metro, but the Dr was insistent that the GI bleed could lead to a bacterial infection. I reluctantly gave in (have REALLY been trying to avoid antibiotics unless absolutely needed).
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Last edited by Solamar; 05-17-2017 at 11:46 AM.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irie View Post
Sorry your pup isn't feeling the best

Did you/the vet call poison control about the plant, or were they able to rule out the plant as a cause?

Your vet wants the best for your dog. VCA hospitals are expensive (in comparison), yet thorough. Just keep communication very clear.

Vet wants to rule out pancreatitis, this is usually done via a snap test. Pancreatitis can be nasty very quickly, and even kill.

Blood work can tell many things. In the very least, how dehydrated she is, what electrolytes are off balance, etc, etc, ETC.

Xrays can rule out yet more things, or help zero in on a diagnosis.

Anti-vomit injection is given to well...stop the vomiting = stop fluid loss and make dog more comfortable.

IV hydration is the best way to keep your dog hydrated and keep the electrolytes balanced. Hydration by mouth is always best, but with vomiting/diarrhea the body needs some extra help until the cause can be fixed.

Did they send out a fecal test to rule out parasites (worms/coccidia/giardia)?
Clear fecal test about two weeks ago.



Sounds like you have been through this - that is almost the exact conversation I had with the vet!

I have nothing bad to say about VCA, I think their process is to do EVERYTHING that can help diagnose/cure the animal and leave the $$ decisions to the pet owner.

I have decided that they are not the right type of vet for me though and will not be using them further. Our trainer and breeder have both recommended local vets that have a bit more "country" common sense. I'll be checking them out...
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