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What is Reduced Activity of the Stomach?

In a normal digestive system, the food your dog eats is moved through the gastric tract by the contractions of the stomach muscles. When the stomach muscles are not able to contract (stomach paralysis), bacteria and indigestible particles that cause pain, vomiting, and bloating to name a few. Gastroparesis may not be a life-threatening disorder on its own, but the complications from the symptoms it causes can lead to severe and dangerous problems. Some of these issues that may be produced are diabetes, malnutrition, bloat, intestinal blockage, and weight loss. This illness is also painful and stressful for your dog and may lead to depression and anorexia, which can be debilitating and life-threatening for a dog. If you suspect your dog may have gastroparesis, you should call your veterinarian and make an appointment as soon as you can.

Reduced activity of the stomach (gastroparesis), or delayed gastric emptying, is the slowing or temporary paralysis of the stomach muscles. In this condition, the stomach is not able to contract to squeeze food and push it into the small intestine effectively. This causes many uncomfortable conditions for the dog such as vomiting, nausea, and increased pressure from gas. Not only is this an uncomfortable disorder, but it can also lead to serious consequences like diabetes because it delays the time that the food is passed between the stomach to the intestine. This can cause blood glucose (sugar) to go up since the food is not being digested properly in the intestine.

Reduced Activity of the Stomach Average Cost

From 48 quotes ranging from $300 - $3,500

Average Cost

$1,100

Symptoms of Reduced Activity of the Stomach in Dogs

The symptoms of gastroparesis can vary greatly depending on your dog’s age, health, and the cause of the disorder. While there are a variety of clinical signs, the most common are:

  • Belching
  • Eating strange items (Pica)
  • Gas
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Pain in the upper abdomen
  • Stomach spasms
  • Swelling of abdomen
  • Throwing up immediately after meals
  • Weight loss
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Causes of Reduced Activity of the Stomach in Dogs

Gastroparesis can be caused by many different disorders, illnesses, or injuries. It may also be a birth defect or hereditary disorder. These are the most common causes of gastroparesis:

  • Complication from surgery
  • Digestive inflammatory disease
  • Food poisoning
  • Foreign items in stomach
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Intestinal obstruction
  • Metabolism or electrolyte imbalance
  • Side effects of medication (i.e. opiates)
  • Smooth muscle function disorder
  • Stress
  • Tumors or lesions
  • Ulcers
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Diagnosis of Reduced Activity of the Stomach in Dogs

The most important part of your visit to the veterinarian is providing as much information you have about your dog’s illness, such as what symptoms you have seen and how long they have been going on. It is also important for your veterinarian to know your dog’s medical history, vaccination record, recent injuries or illnesses, changes in behavior, and changes in appetite or activity level.

A comprehensive physical exam will be done, which includes your dog’s vital signs (i.e. body temperature, blood pressure, heart rate), weight, abdominal palpation, and detailed inspection of your dog’s eyes, ears, nose, and throat. Once this is completed, some tests will be done such as blood work (i.e. CBC, blood gas panel, and chemistry profile), urinalysis, fecal exam, and abdominal radiographs (x-rays). The veterinarian may also need to get an MRI, CT scans, and ultrasound of the abdomen. An endoscopy may also be done, which is a procedure to give the veterinarian a better look at what is going on in your dog’s digestive system. He will insert a long flexible tube into the stomach through the colon or mouth, using a tiny camera on the end to see the esophagus, upper intestine, colon, and stomach. With this examination the veterinarian will be able to see any kind of swelling, scars, irritation, obstructions, or growths. If the veterinarian finds any growths, he will take a biopsy for testing. Once the veterinarian gets the results of all of these tests he will be more able to prescribe the right kind of therapy, diet, or medication to control the gastroparesis.

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Treatment of Reduced Activity of the Stomach in Dogs

If your dog is severely dehydrated or malnourished your veterinarian will admit him to the hospital for IV fluid therapy, special vitamins, and electrolytes. Once your dog is stable, the veterinarian will decide on a therapy plan to control the gastroparesis episodes. Fortunately, many times the veterinarian is able to prescribe a special diet to control the symptoms depending on what is causing them. A diet low in fat and fiber are almost always suggested with several small feedings per day as well as stomach acid blockers (i.e. ranitidine, famotidine), The veterinarian may also prescribe a stomach coating medication (i.e. sucralfate), and prokinetic medicine (i.e. erythromycin, cisapride,) to calm your dog’s stomach while promoting movement of the muscles.

If your dog has an obstruction or tumor, surgery will be necessary to remove them. While these types of surgeries pose a slight risk like all surgeries do, the risk is higher if your dog does not get the surgery.

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Recovery of Reduced Activity of the Stomach in Dogs

This illness can be frustrating and hard to control, but with the right medication, special diet, and cooperation with your veterinarian, the episodes are usually able to be controlled. If surgery has to be performed, your dog’s chances of recovery are good if the veterinarian is able to remove the blockage without complications. The chances of a tumor are very low, but if your dog’s gastroparesis is caused by a tumor, the veterinarian will remove it and send it to a lab to be tested for malignancy (cancer). If it is not cancerous, your dog’s chances of recovery are good. In the case of a malignant tumor (cancer), after it is removed your dog will need chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Chances of recovery depend on whether the cancer has spread to any other parts of the body and how well your dog responds to treatment.

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Reduced Activity of the Stomach Average Cost

From 48 quotes ranging from $300 - $3,500

Average Cost

$1,100

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Reduced Activity of the Stomach Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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dog-name-icon

El Guapo

dog-breed-icon

Pit bull

dog-age-icon

3 Years

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Serious severity

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pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Vomiting And Weight Loss

My 3 yr old Pit Bull has been vomiting for a month now. He has loss so much weight. Th vet did x rays blood work and did not find any foreign bodies in his stomach or intestines. Also, they didn’t not find any parasite. They gave them a barium fluid and he passed it successfully but it was very slow going through his system. They prescribed a bland canned food diet and he still threw that up. He continues to throw up a week later or most of the food he has been given. Could it be that he has no strength in her stomach to digest food? I don’t know what to do

April 24, 2018

El Guapo's Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1611 Recommendations

If El Guapo has not had lab work done to assess his systemic function, he needs to have that done. X-rays will show a physical blockage, but systemic disease can cause the signs that you are describing. Since he is not improving, he should have a follow up with his veterinarian. I hope that he is okay.

April 24, 2018

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Cody

dog-breed-icon

Yorkie

dog-age-icon

11 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Bloating,Wieght Loss.

Hi there. My wee dog 'Cody' is 11yrs,she was diagnosed with diabetes a week ago and has started insulin injections twice daily. She has hernia, cataracts in both eyes and her stomach and sides have blown out quite a bit. Real loud gurgling noises also. Vet wants diabetes under control first but her weight has dropped less than haf of wot she was. Always hungry. Very down in mood. Please advise me on what I can do. Many thanks indeed.

Feb. 4, 2018

Cody's Owner


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3320 Recommendations

I understand your concerns about Cody and the sudden weight loss; but I agree with your Veterinarian that it is important to first get the diabetes under control before addressing other issues as treatments and dietary changes can knock the diabetes management out of line. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Feb. 4, 2018

My dog (3 yr old Pitbull) has been throwing up for a month now. The vet didn’t find any foreign bodies in his stomach or parasites in his stomach. They gave him barium fluid and he passed it very slowly. The prescribed a bland canned diet and he still throws that up. He lost so much weight and his energy levels are very low. What should I do?

April 24, 2018

Mando G.


I too have an 8 yr old jack Russell diagnosed with diabetes about 5 months ago. He gets 2 insulin injections a day (U-40 10 cc) and eats twice a day, glycobalance wet and dry food mixed. Recently he had been spitting up a few times a day.. not every day tho. Any comments?

March 30, 2018

Janet G.


That's great thank u for ur response.

Feb. 4, 2018

Cody's Owner

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Poppy

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English Setter

dog-age-icon

10 Months

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Moderate severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Vomiting

My 10 month old puppy, Poppy, has had diarrhea pretty much since she came home with me. We tried a probiotic and upgrading her to adult dog food thinking the puppy food was too rich for her stomach. We finally got her diarrhea under control and she started throwing up stomach bile. My vet per her on famotidine (40mg twice daily) and switched her to I/d food. She still has days where she throws up and is lethargic then the next day she is a perfectly happy puppy.

Dec. 27, 2017

Poppy's Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1611 Recommendations

Thank you for your email. I'm not sure as to the testing that your veterinarian has already done, but checking for Giardia and coccidia, as well as other intestinal parasites would be a good idea. Sometimes, if puppies have an intestinal insult, and I do not know Poppy's history, so can't comment on her specifically, they need a longer course of intestinal diet like I/D, probiotics, and ati-diarrheal medications. Consistency in the food can be important, with no switching from the intestinal diet until they have had a chance to heal their intestines. If that course of treatment has already been attempted, it would be best to ask your veterinarian what the next step might be, but if it hasn't, it would be worth talking to your vet about whether that might help.

Dec. 27, 2017

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Bruno

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Labrador Retriever

dog-age-icon

2 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

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pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Dizzy
Lost

As per the previous advise we have started digestive enzyme..already bruno is malnourished and weak and thin...of late we are noticing that he has become dizzy, walks as if he is drunk...but he is eating properly...he was given oxiflocsoxin by our vet for his stomach problem but it was stopped immediately when we noticed him feeling dizzy but since then he is still the same...very dizzy

Oct. 18, 2017

Bruno's Owner

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recommendation-ribbon

3320 Recommendations

Incoordination may be a side effect of ofloxacin or due to Bruno’s malnourishment and possible issues with his liver or kidneys. I would return to your Veterinarian for another examination and have a blood test taken to check liver and kidney function to see if there is anything there causing this new symptoms. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Oct. 18, 2017

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Brunoo

dog-breed-icon

Labrador Retriever

dog-age-icon

2 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Gas
Gas, Anoraxia

My dog he poops out exactly the same matter he eats...say if he eats rice his poop is generally undigested rice in the same form he had eaten. We are able to understand that he is unable to digest the food he eats.He has become very weak and malnourished over time

Oct. 15, 2017

Brunoo's Owner


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3320 Recommendations

If Bruno is passing undigested food, it may be a sign that he has a fast gastrointestinal transit (food doesn’t have time to digest) or that there is a lack of enzymes which are not breaking down food into easily absorbable molecules. I would recommend trying something like a digestive enzyme additive to the food to see if there is any improvement (see link below). Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM https://naturvet.com/product/digestive-enzymes-powder/

Oct. 15, 2017

Thank doc... We shall implement the same and let you know of the results .

Oct. 15, 2017

Brunoo's Owner

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Duncan

dog-breed-icon

Aussie/Lab Mix

dog-age-icon

1 Year

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Vomiting
Poor Appetite
Vomiting Bile
Irregular Bowl Movements
Loud Stomach Sounds

My pup (Duncan) has had problems with throwing up bile since roughly when I got him. Duncan would and still does throw up yellow or clear bile on occasion and with in the past 5 months I have seen a vet consistently about his condition because he would loose weight in a short amount of time due to not eating enough or runny bowls.In an X-Ray he has inflamation oll throughout his tracks and stomach. he has been given many antibiotics that has finished and helped temporarily but now I am back to where we started. I am currently giving him a prescribed powder that I put in his food to help with his flora from antibiotics, but does not seem to help him in any other way. The vet told me that this may be something that will pass as Duncan gets older, but have not found any other ways for him to be comfortable. side note: I have cooked him bland foods to help him eat more in the past but would not help him with the other issues in his system. I worry that if I start cooking for him again that I will make matters worse. Any advise will be greatly appreciated. Thank you:)

dog-name-icon

Poppy

dog-breed-icon

Jackapoo

dog-age-icon

13 Weeks

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Blockage
Slow Bowel Movement

Our 13 week old Jack-a-poo puppy started severely throwing up. We ended up taking her to the hospital where they did blood tests and xrays. They said it was a blockage but they can't say why or what caused it. My questions is how am I supposed to know if the symptoms are coming back. She has been eating rice and boiled chicken but then doesn't go for a poo until between 3-12hours and when she does it's definitely less then what she ate. I'm just concerned we are doing something wrong that we don't know about. I also feel like she is not drinking enough water but I'm not sure how to increase that. Please help!

dog-name-icon

Tequila

dog-breed-icon

None

dog-age-icon

8 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Lethargy
Vomiting
Anorexia

My 8 yrs old dog (mutt dog) had erlichiose in 2017. The disease was controlled but there sequelelae an immune-mediate hemolytic anemia (IMHA) had developed, that has been treated with mycophenolate mofetil (170 mg 2X per day) and epoetin alfa (1ml per day). She always has short episodes of diarrhea and some periods (5 to 7 days) without eating. But from November 2018 until February 2019, she remained for many days without eating, with almost daily episodes of vomiting, after 12-15 hours of ingestion. After many doctors, and lot of blood exams, liver and pancreas enzymes, ultrasounds and x-rays, no abnormality was found. We did a endoscopy after all, and the diagnosis was gastroenteritis with moderate ulcers in the duodenum and gastric refluxes. During February she has a significant improvement, eating all mels and no vomit. But now she stop eating again, with daily vomit and episodes of diahrrea. We treat with theses medications about 4/5 months and does not seem to be working. Sorry about my writing, we're from Brazil.

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Miles

dog-breed-icon

Pomeranian

dog-age-icon

4 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Loss Of Appetite
Lethary
Regurgitatin

Our 4 year old, Pomeranian was hospitalized for 6 days due to his stomach basically not working. He had thrown up blood and was given meds at the ER and sent home with us with no signs of obstruction. He did well for a day and then was regurgitating every 20 mins or so we brought him back to the ER. ALL blood tests we could think of were done, liver is fine, no addison's disease, kidneys, pancreas (although swollen on ultrasound blood work was fine) as well. No signs of obstruction on ultrasounds, multiple sets of x rays on different days done. Internal Medicine Dr felt he was atleast strong enough to come home a day ago and his appetite has been hit or miss and trying to pill a dog that is regurgitating still and not hungry isn't the easiest. We tried all the IG sensitive can foods and boiled chicken and rice and cottage cheese. He only eats a small amount at a time and is lethargic. Every once in a while we see signs of himself, barking at birds by the window or knocks on the door but for the most part sleepy. Next step according to the Dr. is endoscopy if he has not improved in a few days. My question really is...when should I panic if he isn't eating at all? How long does it take from an episode like this that kept him hospitalized for so long for him to recover fully? They also found thickening of his stomach lining as well. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. I am also sitting next to him now and I can hear his stomach making gurgling noises. ( he did manage to keep a couple spoonfuls of cottage cheese down when he wouldn't anything else this morning)

Reduced Activity of the Stomach Average Cost

From 48 quotes ranging from $300 - $3,500

Average Cost

$1,100