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Discussion Starter #1
Rookie might be in trouble. :(

He's 4 next month and has never gotten sick eating stuff he shouldn't, however I have an Umbrella Cockatoo and the dog (naturally) finds the birds dropping something of a delicacy. It's not terribly uncommon to have him puke up some bile/foam a couple of times a year. Of course, sometimes I'll feed him and he'll return everything within a few minutes. This is not a chronic thing, but I can safely say it happens 5-7 times a year. My vet has told me "Typical Shepherd." He's otherwise perfectly healthy, strong as ****, and an overall pleasure.

He puked a little foam on Wednesday. Nothing significant and I wrote it off. He ate fine and had normal bowel movements. I got home yesterday (Thursday) and everything seemed fine. The walker left me the usual note and Rookie went out with me for our usual play routine. An hour later I fed him. He declined. Unprecedented. I took the food away for a half-hour and then offered it again. He took a few bites, but walked away. Minutes later he heaved the food and bile back up. I saw nothing else in it, but when I went back inside I found a small spot of bile in the house that had a 3" long quill from a bird feather in it. :mad: I didn't offer him any more food and tried to get him to drink. He declined his favorite treat (ice) and pretty much slept all evening.

An hour after we went to bed he went into the living room and expelled some bile mixed with blood. Not digested or brown - bright red... quite a bit of it.

Alarmed (panicked, really), we ran him down to the emergency center. X-rays showed some material in the stomach, but no masses and normal bloods (thank God - last night was shockingly similar to what happened with Eich before he was diagnosed with HSA). Gut noises were a little low, but he was negative for tenderness. Vet thinks he may be obstructed. They kept him overnight to keep him hydrated and medicated. I called this morning and they told me there was no more vomiting, he was doing well, and they're going to do more xrays around noon EST to see if the stomach has emptied or not. If not, surgery may be needed.

The doc seriously doubts a bird feather can puncture the stomach wall, but he thinks it could definitely cause a blockage with subsequent irritation from regurgitation. The parrot has full flight feathers and some of them are over a foot long with quills that are nearly a pencil diameter. I never thought about the dog getting hold of one of them.

That's all I've got at the moment. I'm drained and could really use some thoughts, advice, or just a kind word.
 

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He is definitely where they are equipped to be dealing with this. Hoping for a good outcome and that surgery is not necessary.
 

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I hope your vet calls you back soon with good news and Rookie's back to normal. That's horrible - I would never have thought that a feather could do that kind of damage either. My puppy ate a nice sequoia pine cone yesterday, and I'm worrying about the same thing. These guys can really drive us crazy! Good luck, and hoping for that relieving phone call to come quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Vet just called to check in. No more vomiting. X-rays are being done within the hour. Fingers crossed.
 

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New x-rays are done and look better, but not 100%. Doc is optimistic and is going to give him some food. If food gets eaten and stays down I can probably take him home and keep an eye on everything for the weekend. Perfect - just how I wanted to spend the holiday, but it sure beats the alternative!

Waiting on word from the doc... again!
 

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Fingers crossed for you and Rookie! Sounds like good news so far. No chocolate Easter bunnies for him, lol, since you'll be watching him like a hawk.
 

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fingers crossed here also. might i suggest you keep him away from the bird droppings and feathers. hopefully some lab ret owners will hav more insight on the feather thing.
 

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I can't add anything useful to this thread except to say I'm glad Rookie seems to be feeling better and hope that he keeps his food down and can go home!!!

PIN FEATHERS: My late Mac was a chicken killer, over the years he killed and ate dozens of my neighbor's trespassing chickens. He started getting nasty difficult to control infections in his ankles. It took several years but finally they traced the problem to e-coli in his urine (it took a special way to get the urine and do the test to find it). My vet said it came from his intestines and had to have come from something that pierced his intestines which introduced the e-coli into his bloodstream. The only thing I could think of that could puncture a dog's intestines was either a large pin feather from the chickens or one of their long, sharp toenails. Not saying it's 100% definite, but never found him chewing on anything that could cause splinters or anything sharp. FWIW the e-coli was treated successfully with antibiotics.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
UPDATE

He wouldn't eat at the vets office, but the doc felt it was unnecessary to keep him overnight, so we brought him home. Once home he took a few bites of ground turkey with rice and pumpkin, but he was exhausted and shaky and pretty much went to sleep and slept through the night.

The vet certainly had him well hydrated because first thing this morning he went outside and did what I call a "statue piss", where the dog essentially resembles a dog statue for about a full minute. Next, he passed some of the most awful smelling loose granular stool I've ever smelt. Not sure if it's the turkey, but in a twist of irony it's certainly a welcome sight. He stopped to inspect some fresh deer droppings and carried his ball around, so he's coming around. He ate some more a little while ago but is definitely not eating normally.

We're not quite out of the woods, but I think I see a clearing up ahead.

I might take him to my regular vet later this morning... they have an ultrasound tech working today and it might be a good idea to get a clearer look.

arycrest/Gayle - you got me thinking... an organism that can ingest and process an entire bird cannot possibly be taken down by a single feather, right? I'm wondering if this is a parasite or some other issue completely unrelated to the feather quill I found. The parrot has been around long before the dog, and Eich lived his entire life with the bird as well... just thinking.
 

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Did they do blood work? Was that all pretty normal?

I have a dog who just had her second episode of something called HGE/ hemorrhagic gastroenteritis. The blood work on her was just starting to hit the point - she hadn't quite gone full blown, like the first time. With that the first time it was very clear as she had bloody diarrhea and eventually, vomit. Second time foamy vomit and right before we left for the vet 1 bloody stool. I a not saying that is what Rocky had just tossing that out there - and the blood work is a good way to know either way.

It takes a while for a big dog to come back from these GI things. Keep him quiet and do small bland meals more frequently. Scary stuff!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Did they do blood work? Was that all pretty normal?
The emergency vet did a red cell count to check for anemia; I don't believe they ran a full panel.

I just got back from my regular vet. Rookie is actually acting much better, though he still isn't interested in eating. The doctor said ultrasound would not be necessary at this point, and he thinks this is more of an irritation/fermentation issue rather than a blockage. He's doing a full blood workup at my request (and your suggestion ;) )and wants me to keep him quiet and on Pepto and a bland diet for the next day or two.

I won't know the results from the blood work for a couple of days given the holiday, but I think we're getting out of the woods.
 

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Oh, gosh, poor boy.
I hate to see German Shepherds like that.:(
Hope he feels better very soon.
 

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I'm glad Rookie is home for the holidays and seems to be coming around!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
He napped all afternoon and still isn't interested in eating. The ball however is completely different story.

1364675991415.jpg
 

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I am glad he is perkier but it is worrisome that he is still not interested in eating. Did they mention a partial obstruction?

It definitely could be an irritated GI tract. I had this happen with a friend's dog recently. She didn't eat for 3 or 4 days and we ran every test in the world and none showed anything out of the ordinary.

Are you giving him probiotics? I would recommend that and also slippery elm which is very soothing to the digestive tract. (The pepso covers similar territory) It's an absorbent though so you don't want to give it within an hour of giving meds.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Well, after turning his nose up at the ground turkey once again I decided to try some ground beef. I cooked it, drained it, pressed it dry, and he ate a good half-cup. He also got a pizza crust (I know....). It's been a couple of hours and nothing has come back up. :thumbup:

I've got some nonfat yogurt for tomorrow and I might get started on acidophollus then as well, but I'm going to wait for another bowel movement first ... nothing today except for some foul liquid.

I'll post updates as they occur. Good night everyone, and thanks for all the tips and wishes.
 
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