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Ask Linda Simmon Your Own Question
Linda Simmon
Linda Simmon, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 8098
Experience:  MVB MRCVS
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Refusing food. Very lethargic. Sticky gums. Sunken eyes,

Customer Question

Refusing food. Very lethargic. Sticky gums. Sunken eyes
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What type of animal are we talking about?
Customer: Golden retriever
JA: When did you first notice this decrease in the Golden Retriever's appetite?
Customer: This afternoon
JA: Does the Golden Retriever seem to be in any pain?
Customer: Not specifically, but very unusual behavior
JA: And what's the Golden Retriever's name and age?
Customer: Lady, 4 years old
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know about Lady?
Customer: No
Submitted: 19 days ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Hello, you are through to Dr Linda, a UK based vet with 10 years of clinical experience.

I'm sorry to hear this and understand your concern for Lady.

When did she first become unwell?

Is it possible she has gotten over heated today?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Yeah possible
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Is she panting or bloated?

Would you be able to check her temperature?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
She was lethargic and retching 2 days ago. Went to emergency vet. She was OK with her and gave her anti nausea injection.Seemed to be OK yesterday. She was out exercising in heat today. She has been lethargic,.very unhappy,.sunken eyes and stucky gums
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
I don't have a thermometer
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
No panting. Breathing seems fine, and not bloated
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Ok, sure.

Has she been drinking or eating less than usual?

Has she been spayed?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
She's been spayed.This afternoon she's refused all food and drink
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Tried putting a bit of vegetable stock in water but won't touch it
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Showing strange behaviour like cowering away from us and lying down outside on her own
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Thank you, ok.

Did the vet run any tests such as a blood test or abdominal scan?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Yeah I believe she checked for air in stomach. No bloods
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

She did scan her abdomen? With an ultrasound?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Yeah I think so
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
no abnormalities
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Ok, that's very reassuring as this helps rule out a wide range of possible issues including pancreatitis, a gut blockage, urinary stones etc.

Is she passing normal poo and pee?

Has she vomited today?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
No vomiting today at all. Wee and poo all good
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Thank you.

I am just typing my reply now which will take a few minutes.

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
OK thanks
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Lady's signs of sticky gums and shrunken eyes are consistent with severe dehydration.

This would be rather unusual in a dog who does not have vomiting or diarrhoea and only became recently unwell, but it is possible, particularly if they have gotten over heated.

If she will not eat or drink anything, and especially as she is not herself and has been lethargic, she does not need to be seen by the vet once again.

She likely needs to be hospitalised on a drip and, at this point, I would want further tests run including a blood and urine test so we can get to the bottom of this.

I'd be concerned about a possible toxin ingestion, liver or kidney disease, an infection etc.

I would not feel happy having her at home tonight and would want her seen right away from all you have said.

Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

How does this all sound?

Do you need the details for a local clinic that is open?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
no that's fine
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 19 days ago.

Ok, sure thing.

This window remains open so please feel welcome to keep me updated and to ask any further questions you may have.

Wishing Lady a speedy recovery.