Your dog’s pancreas is responsible for secreting digestive enzymes to help break down his food. It is also responsible for secreting enzymes which help regulate the amount of sugar in the bloodstream. Sometimes, pancreatic juices will attack the tissue in the gland which causes inflammation. This is known as canine pancreatitis.
This condition normally affects middle-aged and older adults. Certain breeds are also more susceptible. They include cocker spaniels, miniature poodles, and miniature schnauzers. Diabetes mellitus will develop if the pancreas isn’t capable of producing insulin due to the inflammation.
Certain medical conditions that cause hormonal imbalances will increase the risk of pancreatitis in dogs. Some of the most common conditions include hypercalcemia, hypothyroidism, and diabetes mellitus. Medications may also be to blame like antibiotics. Some dogs suffer trauma to the pancreas which will cause inflammation too.
The pancreas gets to work secreting digestive enzymes after your dog eats. This can be very painful to your dog, so he may stop eating and drinking a response to the pain. Other common signs include diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Your dog may also experience weakness.
In order to diagnose canine pancreatitis accurately, the vet will need to take a blood sample. This will measure the amount of pancreatic enzymes found in the blood. These enzymes can also be detected in a urine sample. The vet may also take an x-ray of the abdomen in order to confirm the diagnosis.
After experiencing inflammation, the pancreas will certainly need a break. This means that your dog won’t be given any food or water for up to three days. Intravenous fluids will be given to prevent dehydration during this time. These fluids will also help flush out any toxins that have accumulated.
Since diarrhea and vomiting are common problems, medications may be given to deal with them. In extreme cases, canine pancreatitis can require surgery. This will only be done if there are blockages or masses that need to be removed.
If the pancreas is damaged badly enough, it may not be able to produce as much insulin as your dog’s body needs. This means that diabetes mellitus will result. However, this damage may not be permanent since the tissue can sometimes recover, so the diabetes would only be temporary.