Canine pancreatitis is a condition in which the pancreas becomes inflamed. The pancreas is an organ located near the stomach that produces enzymes that aid in digestion and hormones that regulate blood sugar.
The symptoms of canine pancreatitis can include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, and dehydration. It is a fairly common condition, affecting 1-2% of dogs.
Prevention of pancreatitis is important and not hard to do
Certain factors can increase a dog’s risk of developing pancreatitis. These include obesity, a high-fat diet, certain medications, and underlying medical conditions like hypothyroidism or diabetes.
To prevent pancreatitis in dogs, you can provide a healthy diet low in fat, regular exercise, and avoid feeding table scraps. If you suspect your dog has pancreatitis, you should take them to the vet as soon as possible for diagnosis and treatment.
Breeds that are at higher risk of developing pancreatitis include Miniature Schnauzers, Cocker Spaniels, and Shetland Sheepdogs. However, the exact reason for this is unknown.
Chronic or recurring pancreatitis may also increase a dog’s risk of developing diabetes mellitus due to damage to the pancreatic cells that produce insulin.
Treatment of pancreatitis takes more effort and is more costly
Treatment for canine pancreatitis typically involves hospitalization, IV fluids, pain management, and a low-fat diet. Severe cases may require surgery. Dogs that have experienced pancreatitis are at higher risk of getting it again, so it’s important to manage their diet and lifestyle.
The cost of treating canine pancreatitis can vary depending on the severity of the case and the length of hospitalization. Treatment can be expensive, but the cost may be covered by pet insurance or a payment plan.
If you want more information on canine pancreatitis
Here are three national organizations dealing with canine pancreatitis along with links to their websites:
- The American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) – https://www.acvim.org/
- The American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation (AKCCHF) – https://www.akcchf.org/
- The Veterinary Information Network (VIN) – https://www.vin.com/Default.aspx?pid=130&catId=5718&id=8353467