Home » other animals » Dog pancreatitis: symptoms, treatment and prognosis

Dog pancreatitis: symptoms, treatment and prognosis

Inflammation of the pancreas in a dog

The pancreas is one of the most important organs in a dog's body.

Unfortunately, it is also very sensitive to functional disorders.

Often, as a result of dietary errors or other factors, it occurs inflammation of the pancreas.

It is a species particularly vulnerable to this disease dog.

What is the pancreas, how does it become inflamed? Is it life-threatening for my four-legged friend? Finally, how to treat and prevent pancreatitis in dogs?

Answers to these and other questions related to pancreatic insufficiency in a dog you will find in this article.

  • What is the pancreas and why it is so important?
  • What is dog pancreatitis?
    • Acute pancreatitis in a dog
    • Acute pancreatitis in dogs symptoms
  • Dog pancreatitis diagnosis
  • Treatment of pancreatitis in dogs
    • Reduction in the activity of the pancreas
    • Stabilization of the dog's condition
    • Preventing the further development of the disease and fighting complications
  • Pancreatitis in a dog of prognosis
  • Pancreatitis in a dog's diet
  • Chronic pancreatitis in a dog
    • Chronic pancreatitis symptoms
    • Chronic pancreatic insufficiency treatment

What is the pancreas and why it is so important?

Pancreas, or pancreas, is located along the duodenum and stomach of dogs.

This inconspicuous organ plays a very important role in the body. First and foremost, it performs a function exocrine - this is what makes the pancreas possible digesting food.

How does it happend?

The pancreas is responsible for the secretion digestive juices, that is enzymes decomposing nutrients, as well as ingredients responsible for neutralizing the acidic reaction of the food content.

The digestive juices I mentioned are secreted in the form inactive proenzymes and collected in bubbles called zymogens.

Secreted into the lumen of the pancreatic alveoli through the system pancreatic ducts they get into duodenum, where they are activated and are involved in the digestion of individual food components.

Most pancreatic juice enzymes are:

  • protein digesting enzymes (proteolytic),
  • fat digesting enzymes (lipolytic),
  • sugar digesting enzymes (glycolytic),
  • nucleic acid digesting enzymes (nuclease).

Figuratively speaking, they divide complex, long-chain food compounds into simpler and shorter ones, from which the body draws energy or building material.

In addition to producing these ingredients, the pancreas facilitates absorption vitamin B12, It prevents the growth of bacteria in the initial part of the small intestine, and has a beneficial effect on the intestinal mucosa.

In addition to the digestive function, this organ also performs the functions of endocrine.

Making up about 2% of the organ's weight, the pancreatic islets, known as the islets of Langerhans, produce, among others:

  • insulin,
  • glucagon,
  • somatostatin,
  • pancreatic polypeptide.

These substances are mainly responsible for the proper metabolism of sugars in the pooch's body.

And disruptions in the functioning of the Langerhans islets can cause diabetes in animals.

Disorders of the exocrine pancreas are:

  • pancreatic insufficiency,
  • tumors,
  • inflammation of the pancreas.

This article will discuss pancreatitis. Reading on, you will find out what the disease is and how it can be diagnosed.

What is dog pancreatitis?

Dog pancreatitis symptoms

There are two forms of pancreatitis:

  1. Acute pancreatitis - consists in the sudden activation of proenzymes. Despite the progress of science, we do not know what is causing it. OZT leads to swelling of the interstitial part of the organ, its self-digestion and damage to the pancreas and surrounding organs. This is because active pancreatic enzymes digest everything they come across on their way.
  2. Chronic pancreatitis - occurs less frequently. It is based on recurring or persistent inflammation. Usually, the stimulus for its formation is a harmful factor, which can lead to the destruction of the pancreatic parenchyma and the malfunction of the organ.

It is currently believed that 25% cases of vomiting and diarrhea in dogs, of unknown cause, is precisely undetected ACS.

Acute pancreatitis in a dog

Recently, a little dog appeared in my office, with an episode of diarrhea on the morning of the visit, and vomited several times during the night.

He was clearly experiencing severe abdominal pain.

Previously, polite, eager to all Misio, he could not be touched.

Due to the chronic liver failure he suffered from, he ate only liver support food, so food poisoning was unlikely

After the blood test, it turned out that he was suffering from acute pancreatic insufficiency.

Fortunately, everything returned to normal as a result of treatment. But all the time I was wondering what might have caused such a sharp reaction?

It was only after a few days that the owners admitted that Misio got a piece of bacon, because as they stated - he once liked it so much, and that it was his birthday

In my practice I deal with such cases quite often.

You need to know that in the case of Miska, the reaction of the owner, very sensitive to any changes in his behavior, was immediate.

That's why his story ended so well.

In many cases, however, this is not the case

Acute pancreatitis is because a very difficult opponent.

Causes of acute pancreatitis in a dog:

  • a diet high in fat,
  • obesity,
  • no movement,
  • post-accident circulatory disorders in the organ,
  • reflux,
  • autoimmune diseases,
  • obstruction and swelling of the pancreatic ducts (e.g. in the course of ascariasis),
  • poisoning with organophosphorus preparations,
  • drugs such as:
    • azathioprine,
    • sulfonamides,
    • L-asparaginase,
    • high doses of glucocorticosteroids,
    • long-term administration of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • race, e.g. miniature schnauzers.

The truth is, we often don't know how inflammation occurs.

The dog is in good health one day, then it has episodes of diarrhea and dies a few days later

There are two forms of inflammation:

  1. Edema (mild),
  2. Haemorrhagic (severe).
The haemorrhagic form of insufficiency often leads to self-digestion of the organ and thus death of the pet.

As a result of necrosis, the body secretes substances that impair the work of the heart, liver, kidneys and lungs.

Acute pancreatitis in dogs symptoms

Symptoms of pancreatic insufficiency: lack of appetite

Depending on the form of inflammation, the symptoms may be light (edema form) or very severe (haemorrhagic form).

Symptoms are also often different, non-specific, due to a general metabolic disorder.

What should worry you?

If your pooch has symptoms such as:

  • sudden lack of appetite,
  • vomiting,
  • diarrhea,
  • gripes,
  • fever,
  • faster breathing,
  • weakness,
  • depression,
  • change in the color of the mucous membranes.
See a veterinarian immediately!

Dog pancreatitis diagnosis

Pancreatitis in a study dog

If your doctor suspects that your dog has pancreatitis, he or she will probably recommend:

  • blood test, and in it the designation of the so-called. cPL,
  • research Ultrasound, or X-ray.

IN blood count, especially in the initial stage of a mild disease or in a chronic form, there may not be any changes.

With an exacerbation of the process, the level increases netrophiles and monocytosis, and also to anemia.

IN biochemical research you should pay attention to liver tests.

In the acute form of inflammation, these parameters increase first, which is an indication for the test specific lipase - cPL.

A positive cPL result indicates organ failure

In blood biochemistry, the level is also measured lipases and amylases.

Their growth may also indicate inflammation.

It is also worth noting that tetrapods with pancreatitis often also have lipemic serum despite an adequate break from the last meal. This means that there is too much fat in their blood.

In some cases, this can already be seen at the time of blood collection.

Treatment of pancreatitis in dogs

Treatment of pancreatitis in dogs

Treatment of acute pancreatitis is based on 4 stages:

  1. Decreased pancreatic activity.
  2. Stabilization of the patient's condition.
  3. Preventing the further development of the disease.
  4. Fighting complications.

Reduction in the activity of the pancreas

We reduce the organ's activity by 4-5 days fasting.

After this time, we give the glucose solution.

Then we introduce a specialized food to the dog's diet, which in its composition has a reduced fat and protein content, for example:

  • Gastrointestinal Low Fat,
  • Dog Intestinal,
  • other food for dogs with pancreatic diseases.

It is also important fluid therapy, in the form of administered, preferably intravenously, drips.

Depending on the patient's condition, Ringer's solution, NaCl solution with glucose are administered.

Vitamin and mineral deficiencies are supplemented by parenterally administered agents such as:

  • Duphalyte,
  • Intravit,
  • Combivit,
  • Catosal.

Stabilization of the dog's condition

In order to stabilize the patient, it is used anti-shock agentsglucocorticosteroids and painkillers.

In this case, the best agents seem to be very strong agents, such as:

  • Tramal,
  • fentanyl,
  • buprenorphine.

It is also important to prevent vomiting, because, on the one hand, it can be a consequence of acute pancreatitis, and on the other hand, it can cause inflammation.

In this case, it works very well maropitant (Cerenia).

Antibiotic treatment is also recommended - to protect against the own population of bacteria in the pancreas.

Preventing the further development of the disease and fighting complications

In some cases it may also be necessary intravenous infusion of fresh plasma or freshly frozen.

You can also do whole blood transfusion.

Thanks to these treatments, natural inhibitors (inhibitors) of pancreatic enzymes are introduced into the dog's body.

As a result OZT a number of complications may occur. The most common are:

  • inflammation and necrosis of the parapancreatic fat,
  • hepatitis (more common in cats),
  • peritonitis.

In the above cases, in addition to the aforementioned treatment, the following are introduced:

  • symptomatic treatment,
  • drainage of fluid from the abdominal cavity,
  • lavage of the peritoneum,
  • antibiotic shield,
  • liver medications:
    • choleretic drugs,
    • ursodeoxycholic acid,
  • dietary supplements:
    • Vetahepar,
    • Epato,
    • Hepatiale forte.
In the course of the disease, it can become pathological multiplication of bacteria in the small intestines, weakening of peristalsis and lower local immunity.

In this case, it introduces tylosin (10-20 mg / kg twice a day) or metronidazole (10-15 mg / kg twice a day) for 3 weeks.

Pancreatitis in a dog of prognosis

So as you can see, treating this condition presents many difficulties.

The prognosis if your dog develops a shock is unfavorable, in other cases, you have to take into account complications.

However, with sufficient action taken quickly, your dog has a chance of recovery.

Pancreatitis in a dog's diet

Pancreatitis in a dog's diet

Unfortunately, tetrapods that have had pancreatitis once tend to do so relapses.

Only the proper conduct of the owners will ensure their health.

The main thing is to control pooch's diet.

First, stop giving him fatty foods - fatty, raw meat, oils (e.g. linen, so often used to improve the quality of the coat).

In my opinion, dogs that have contracted pancreatitis for the rest of their lives should be fed with medicated food such as, for example, Gastrointesinal Low Fat, e.t.c.

Second, inspect your dog's pancreas periodically by exercising periodic blood tests - only early diagnosed disease gives a chance for full recovery.

Chronic pancreatitis in a dog

Chronic pancreatitis is a disease that is rarely diagnosed in dogs.

It occurs asymptomatically, as chronic progressive or recurrent inflammation.

In dogs, we usually deal with the last type.

Chronic pancreatitis symptoms

As a result, dogs come to reappear once in a while diarrhea and vomiting, and digestive disorders.

In some cases, abdominal pain is observed.

As for the causes of this disease, they are similar to those for acute failure.

The research results may also be similar.

Often, however, blood tests are not even performed because no one suspects pancreatitis

The disease is often diagnosed by post-mortem examination or laparotomy.

Then the doctor may notice a change in the structure of the organ's parenchyma - its calcification or fibrosis.

Chronic pancreatic insufficiency treatment

We treat severe cases in the same way as acute failure.

In light cases, it is recommended hunger strike.

Occasionally, your doctor will also recommend administration pancreatic enzymes, such as, for example:

  •  Amyladol,
  • Amylactiv.
With chronic pancreatitis, a pooch's diet is also recommended low in fat.


As you can see, dear reader, pancreatitis, both acute and chronic, is a very insidious disease and its treatment is complex.

Taken too late, unfortunately, often ends in the pooch's death.

However, by taking appropriate steps and having basic knowledge, you can avoid this serious disease in your pet.

Hope my article will help you with that.

You have questions related to this disease? Let me know in the comment below, I will answer as soon as possible.

Sources used >>

Leave Your Comment