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Linda Simon
Linda Simon, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 618
Experience:  MVB MRCVS
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Assistant: What sort of animal are we talking about? I think

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Hi Pearl
Assistant: What sort of animal are we talking about?
Customer: I think I just got disconnected
Assistant: Maybe I'm confused. I thought you had a problem with a pet. Is that correct?
Customer: Yes. She’s a dog - ***** *****
Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. What seems to be the problem with the dog?
Customer: She’s behaving very strangely. She doesn’t like drinking out of her water bowl anymore, I’ve tried different bowls in different places. But the only way I can get her to drink is by tipping the water into the kitchen floor
Assistant: Where does the dog seem to hurt?
Customer: And today she’s started licking the carpet - all over it in the living room
Assistant: Can you see anything that looks wrong or different?
Customer: I don’t think she’s hurt - it’s her behaviour
Assistant: What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Milly and she will be 11 next week
Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Milly?
Customer: Not that I can think of. She has a small wart like growth that’s on her leg that’s been there for years, vet previously said it was nothing to worry about. She’s also lost a few teeth over the last year

Hi there, you are through to Dr Linda. Please wait a few moments as I take a look at your question and type my reply.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Than you
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Incase you think the little growth is relevant here s a picture

Sometimes, dogs will stop drinking from their water bowl because they have had a bad experience. For example, if a dog's name tag on their collar touches against the bowl, it can make a loud noise that they find scary. They then develop an aversion to the bowl and do not like to use it. Dogs naturally prefer to drink from water sources such as puddles, which may be why she is accepting the water from the ground. I would suggest trialling a different type of water bowl (for example, if you have metal, try plastic) and placing it in a different area (in case she does have any 'bad memories' from the old water bowl). Consider using fresh rain water that has been caught from the outside as sometimes tap water can taste funny (particularly if the council have recently added something).

Can I confirm that she is not drinking or urinating any more than usual? If she is, this would warrant investigation.

With regards ***** ***** licking, can you think of anything at all that was spilled there by anyone? If her licking is focused in one place, it may be that there is something that smells interesting in that location.

Does she have any skin issues or itchiness? If so, this could be linked.

If not, we would consider that the licking is caused by nausea. Dogs are trying to settle their stomach. You may also notice other symptoms such as drooling, a reduced appetite or a grumbly stomach. Nausea is something that needs to be looked into and can have many causes. Typically we would do some basic blood tests to check things such as salt/sugar levels, liver function and kidney function.

Are there any other behavioural symptoms? For example, dogs that also do things such as 'staring into space', barking for no reason or pacing around the home at night time may have cognitive dysfunction.

Another consideration for floor licking would be OCD or obsessive compulsive disorder. These dogs constantly feel the need to lick, a behaviour that can be exacerbated by the fact that their skin feels itchy. However, as this is a new behaviour for her, OCD is less likely.

Is Misty an anxious girl? Fear and anxiety can drive unusual behaviours such as licking, which may be a way of her soothing herself. If the behaviour does seem linked to stress and anxiety, consider interventions such as daily calming supplements, an Adaptil plug-in and perhaps a behaviourist assessment.

What does Milly eat? There is a condition called 'Pica' that can cause dogs to lick and eat non-food items. We see this most often in animal's with deficiencies. Personally, I have seen this in dogs fed on home-cooked diets. If she is on a commercial dog food and does not have diarrhoea/vomiting, then this would be unlikely.

A final consideration would be that Milly is doing it for the attention. When she starts, do the people in the house react by paying her attention? Attention seekers will do whatever it takes to have people look and address them. If you are unsure if this is the case with Milly, you can easily check by recording her when no-one else is there. If the behaviour stops or reduces dramatically when alone, you have your answer.

That growth looks like a classic wart and if it has been present for a few years, is very unlikely to be anything sinister. I would simply continue to monitor it.

It has been a pleasure helping you out today, and I hope that you feel I have earned a five-star rating. Please remember to rate the service by selecting the stars at the top of the screen, otherwise the website will not compensate me for my time. There is no extra charge for this (it’s included in your question fee). Even after rating, you are more than welcome to continue asking questions. Thank you, ***** *****

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I have tried several different types of bowl places in different places already
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
There’s definitely not been anything spilt on the carpet
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
She does live attention
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
love. So would you recommend seeing a vet for tests or monitor for a few days first?
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
She is in commercial food. No diarrhoea or sickness
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
she’s eating as normal

Is your concern that she is drinking less than she normally would? If she is eating a moist diet, it may be that she does not need as much moisture as a dog on a dry food. Not drinking is rarely a concern when a dog is eating well and we worry much more about a dog drinking excessively. It may be worth checking the moisture content of her diet and measuring her water intake each day. You might find that she is not drinking simply because she doesn't need to.

I would check her hydration (ensure her gums are nice and wet), and if it is okay and she is eating well, I would feel confident to wait a few days. I would monitor her for any other symptoms, and if these were to develop I would bring her in sooner.

In the mean time, I would measure that water intake and try to prevent the licking behaviour by distracting her with other things ( a walk, a toy etc). Consider not allowing her in that room if she keeps going.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Ok thank you .
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Anything you can recommend to get her drinking out of a bowl again? Not a fan of tipping it on the floor.. unsurprisingly!

Absolutely. Please feel free to keep me updated and let me know if I can be of any further assistance. Dr Linda

I bet! I would try the fresh rain water. Allow her to lap a little from your hand and then direct her mouth to the bowl. Any time she laps from the bowl reward her with a 'Good girl', a pat on the head and perhaps a little treat. She should learn to associate drinking from the bowl with a positive experience.

Linda Simon and other Vet Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Ok thank you