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nekovet
nekovet, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16287
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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My 10 year old golden retriever has diarrhea and a small

Customer Question

Hello
My 10 year old golden retriever has diarrhea and a small amount of blood in her stools, she's not full of energy being an older dog with hip dysplasia and arthritis but is still animated when played with, stroked or talked to. She doesn't look to have lost any weight and drinks ok. The same thing happened to her at the beginning of December 2015 and lasted for 2-3 days. Please do you know what this might be or do you think this maybe serious and I need to take her to the vets?
Thank you Nicky
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  nekovet replied 11 months ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian & I would like to help you with your wee one today.
How long has she had diarrhea this time?
Would you say she passed more or less then a spoonful of blood?
Still eating well?
When was she last wormed?
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Hello Dr B
This time Trix has had diarrhea for 2 days, I couldn't be sure about the amount of blood, but I would probably say less than a spoonful. She is due to be wormed in 2 days with Advocate pipettes & droncit tabs and I haven't fed her today as last night I didn't get any sleep because of spending most of the night outside with her.
Expert:  nekovet replied 11 months ago.
Thank you,
First, I am glad to hear that it wasn't pure haemorrhagic diarrhea, as that can be worrying for our dogs. With that aside, if Trix is due worming in 2 days, I would suggest moving that up just now to cover bases against parasites triggering this loose stool for her.
Now based on the signs we are seeing, we do have a few concerns. Common causes we need to consider include bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, parasites/protozoa infections (why we want to move that worming up just in case), underlying GI disease (ie IBD, lymphoma, etc) dietary sensitivities, general dietary indiscretions, or ingestion of harmful items (though less likely at her age).
With all this in mind, since she is otherwise herself and not losing weight, we can try some supportive care to address those more benign causes for loose stool. To start, you can consider starting her on a easily digestible diet like cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, cottage cheese, scrambled eggs, or meat baby food (as long as its garlic/onion free). There are also OTC vet diets that can be used (ie Hill’s I/D or Royal Canin’s sensitivity) too. The aim of these diets is that they will be better tolerated/absorbed by the compromised gut thus leading to more nutrients in, less GI upset and less diarrhea. As well, to just make digestion even easier for her, you can feed this as small meals. As long as improvement is being seen, I usually advise continuing this until the signs are settled, and then weaning her slowly back to her normal diet.
As well, since this was just a small volume of blood (and likely related to the colon being irritated by her diarrhea), you can consider trying a pet safe anti-diarrheal. As I am sure you appreciate, these would not be a cure for infectious issues; but it can still be of benefit. It will reduce diarrhea load, allow the body to absorb more water/nutrients, and soothe the upset gut. In regards ***** ***** options, the one we most commonly use is Kaolin/Kaopectate (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/kaolin-and-pectin-kapectolin-k-p)). This is available OTC at most pharmacies. Otherwise, Propectalin, Canikur, Fast Balance, and Protexin Pro-Fiber (all OTC at vets, pet stores, and even Amazon) would be another option. All will slow diarrhea and those last ones have the added bonus of providing support to the delicate good GI bacteria. So, these can be used as a short-term means of soothing her upset GI.
Overall, there are a wide range of agents could trigger this diarrhea you are seeing. Since she has it last month, it is possible this is a relapse (if her immune system is struggling to fight an infectious agent off) but could also just be another exposure (since she is older and not as immune robust as she'd have been years ago). Therefore, we’d want to start supportive care to see if we can settle this for her. Though if she weren't to respond to the above within 48 hours (since we don't want to leave this to linger); then we'd want to get her vet involved. They can assess her hydration, rule out fever, and test a stool sample. Depending on their findings, her vet can treat her with antibiotics +/- anti-protozoal treatments to clear this and get her back feeling like herself.
All the best, *****
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Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thank you so much for your very helpful response, It's taken me a while to digest all of the information you've given. I've now,decided to take my girl to the vets just to make sure.
Many thanks again. Nicky
Expert:  nekovet replied 11 months ago.
You are very welcome, Nicky,
I am glad that I could be of help and give you a plan of action until you do have her checked by her vet.
All the best, *****
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