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Need help getting Bella to eat

Discussion in 'Diseases & Illnesses' started by kstraub73, Sep 3, 2019.

  1. kstraub73

    kstraub73 Forums Enthusiast

    Jun 7, 2009
    Omaha, NE
    Hi all! So Bella spent the last 3 days at the vets getting IV fluids and her kidney values went down slightly but not a lot. Very disheartening. :( When she came home last night she was hungry and ate some wet food right up. And carrots. Then she snubbed more wet food later in the evening.

    This morning I tried cottage cheese, eggs, boiled chicken and green beans (which she normally loves) to no avail. She ate eggs yesterday. She did eat carrots and I'm sure I could have kept feeding them to her. And cheese (I'm trying not to overdo the cheese because it's also what I use to give her meds and I don't want her to snub it).

    Any other ideas for foods to try? I may get some baby food to try that. I just don't know what she's going to want.

    We are leaving town in 2 days and I just have this pit in my stomach about it. We do have fluids to administer at home, and our house sitter is on board with that. I might try to get her into another vet just for another opinion - they can also do an ultrasound, where our vet can't. The one our vet refers to is super pricey (a VCA) and I'm very nervous about how many thousands I would end up spending on her there.

    On top of that, she's licking her girl parts almost constantly - but her urinalysis yesterday came back normal.

    I hate all of this so much. I feel like all of this came on so quickly and she's only 10. It breaks my heart to see her like this - I am glad she is interested in some food, but I sure wish it was more.

    Thank you all for listening and for any advice you can give.
    KarenCurtis and Caro like this.
  2. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    So sorry to hear Bella is so sick!
    Is she throwing up at all? I would be careful with cheese as you don’t want to give her anything too rich to cause pancreas issues.

    Yes, try baby food. I know how difficult it is when they will not eat.
    Some people have tried to do cooked or raw meals they make themselves when they won’t eat. My vet gave me some meds to stimulate appetite that worked for a while.

    It is nerve wracking when they won’t eat I know only too well. Having to leave her must be excruciating. Thank goodness you have someone that can administer fluids as that is of vital importance.

    There are many threads on kidney issues you can search for. I really think getting her an ultrasound is critical at her age. They run about 250. Did the vet test for gall bladder issues? At the very least I would do that as it could rupture and you could loose her. Surgery to remove it would be the only cure if it is severe. There are medications on the market that do help.

    She needs to eat to get strong. Try baby food. Keep us posted on your progress.
    Caro, kstraub73 and Ann like this.
  3. RikyR

    RikyR Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2013
    Baton Rouge LA
    Try Cream of Wheat cereal. Cody ate this more often that anything else. I mixed it with finely chopped boiled egg whites, and boiled chicken. Never feed the egg yolks, high in phosphorus. Baby food worked too, but I had a lot of open jars trying to figure out which ones he would eat.
    kstraub73 and Wendy C like this.
  4. kstraub73

    kstraub73 Forums Enthusiast

    Jun 7, 2009
    Omaha, NE
    Thank you. I know, I've been trying to be sparing with the cheese. I tried boiled chicken and rice. I'll try Cream of Wheat also, and some baby food. she threw up a little liquid overnight, but hasn't since. This is all just breaking my heart. After 3 days of being on IV fluids at the vet (during the days), her Bun went from 64 to 59 and Creatinine from 2.8 to 2.6 or something like that. I felt so defeated. But she was more perky when she came home and ate right away.

    Our vet mentioned force feeding her, syringe feeding, etc... I found DogSure online, wondering if something liquidy like that could at least help replenish her nutrients? Anyone ever used anything like that?

    I'm going to call a couple places today for an ultrasound and see if we can get her in before we leave town at least to see if something underlying is going on that they can see. Will ask about the gallbladder too.

    Piper's mom and ghggp like this.
  5. Piper's mom

    Piper's mom Moderator

    Jun 26, 2015
    Winnipeg Mb
    Ann and kstraub73 like this.
  6. Caro

    Caro Moderator

    Jan 14, 2009
    Canberra, Australia
    I agree, an ultrasound that also checks the gallbladder is a must at her age. Shelties are prone to gallbladder mucoceles so it's always worth checking that out. Tully's internal medicine specialist said it's always checks the gallbladder in Shelties to rule out GBM before moving onto anything else.

    I agree with the baby food too.
    Sharon7, Ann and kstraub73 like this.
  7. Chris

    Chris Premium Member

    Feb 25, 2008
    Northern Virginia
    Sending much love for Bella!
  8. Ann

    Ann Moderator

    Feb 25, 2008
    Western Connecticut
    Thanks, Lisa, I was going to suggest some of these. The appetite stimulant is fabulous. I would highly recommend a gallbladder ultrasound if Bella hasn't had one. That can go south quickly too, so time is of the essence. Ultrasounds here are under $100, and we're in the pricey Northeast. Unless you have to go to one of the VCA Emergency places, it should be reasonable and so well worth it, especially for any gastric upset that comes on quickly. Sending good thoughts for Bella.
    kstraub73 likes this.
  9. Sharon7

    Sharon7 Moderator

    Oct 31, 2009
    Southern California
    An ultrasound was done by the internal med specialist I saw about Ally's kidney and pancreas disease. It can show how much the kidneys have shrunk and how much "usable" organ is left.

    This is a tough battle. It can vary every day as to how much and what they will eat. Baby food is great. You may need to give anti-nausea meds. The problem is that even the fluids did not put much of a dent in her numbers, which is not a good sign. The toxins in her bloodstream that the kidneys are no longer removing well are making her feel bad.

    I hesitate to say this, but can you postpone your trip? Her care will be a lot to put on a pet-sitter and she may reach a tipping point sooner than you want. I'm not trying to add to your stress, but I have been through this scenario 3 times. If you need to "force" food on her it is not a good sign. I did this with Ally by putting food into her mouth and holding it closed till she swallowed, and I only did this because she was otherwise still perky and able to do our 2 mile daily walks with the other dogs. There comes a time though when it feels like torture rather than care. Again, I'm not trying to make you feel bad, I'm just relating my own experience. You are the only one who knows your dog and the situation, so lead with your heart. :hugs I'm truly sorry you and Bella are going through this.
    Caro, RikyR, ghggp and 1 other person like this.
  10. kstraub73

    kstraub73 Forums Enthusiast

    Jun 7, 2009
    Omaha, NE
    Thank you for your advice, Sharon. We got the ultrasound appt tomorrow with an internal med specialist so we'll see what they say. Our trip is in Florida and the Caribbean... I keep hoping they will cancel it with Dorian happening, because on top of that while we're on the ship communication will be limited. :( I don't think I can get out of the cruise without losing about the entire amount we paid (which is about $3k). Maybe flights will be a nightmare so we can't get down there on time, we'll see. She is on anti nausea meds (two actually) and an appetite stimulant, so I keep hoping those will kick in. :(
    Caro likes this.

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