Summary Of Tips For Pancreatitis

The following summary is taken from my book Pancreatitis In Dogs which is available on Amazon.

In summary, here is everything I’ve learned from working with our toy poodle Angel the past 6 years since her pancreatitis was first diagnosed.

If Angel has an acute attack, I give her something to coat her stomach immediately.  Today I would use 3-4ML of prepared GastroElm Plus™ given via syringe (she is only 6 pounds).  If that wasn’t available I would use Slippery Elm capsules or Gastrafate®.  My last resort would be sucralfate (Carafate®) since the active ingredient is a sucrose sulfate – aluminum complex instead of slippery elm.  Any of these will protect the GI Tract from being damaged by the release of excess digestive enzymes from the pancreas.  They should also help to stop vomiting, diarrhea or bleeding.

Keep feeding through the attack (especially small animals), but make sure the meals are very small, bland and contain no fat.  Cooked white rice and lean, cut up pieces of chicken breast are the best choices.

Do not withhold water.  Keep the animal hydrated, even if you have to add it to their food or give it to them via syringe.

If you are using sucralfate or Gastrafate® make sure you do it as often as recommended by your vet (usually morning and night).  If you are using slippery elm or GastroElm Plus™, I would give it to them with each small meal.  You can give them the prepared gel via syringe 5-10 minutes prior to eating or simply add it to a small meal.

After the attack subsides, good health should be maintained by keeping the animal on a very low fat diet.  Royal Canin makes a dry dog food that is low in fat for pancreatitis and vets often use Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D dog food.  Angel would only eat it for a week before she refused it.  We feed her:  Chicken breast with all visible fat removed, brown rice, protein enriched pasta (Barilla Plus), dry curd cottage cheese, (low sodium) pumpkin, sweet potato, squash, peas and green beans.

For treats we gave her Charlie Bear Treats with Liver.  She loved them and they are only a few calories as well as low in fat and sodium.  We also give her a good multivitamin a couple times per week.

Pesticide always made Angel sick.  When our yard was sprayed, we kept her off it for a couple days. Insecticide was even worse for Angel and Malathion seemed to be the worst culprit.  A bottle of Malathion spilled in our garage the day before Angel’s first acute attack.  After doing some research, I believe it was one of the things that triggered that initial harsh attack.  Make sure you don’t let them out in the yard for at least 24 hours after spraying any type of insecticide.  I always took Angel for a walk at the park after our yard had been sprayed with any form of pesticide.  If she accidentally walked in a yard that has been sprayed (on walks etc.) I always washed her paws afterwards.

Exercise – Try to go for a walk each day if possible.  Walking is a great way to reduce symptoms and keep both you and the dog healthy.

GastroElm Plus™ is a good long term stomach soother and is very inexpensive compared to the alternatives.  By giving Angel one dose in the morning and another one at night with her meals, we were able to avoid any acute attacks.  If I notice she was having any stomach distress, I’ll give her extra during the day with her small meals.  If you have a small dog that doesn’t like the taste of GastroElm Plus™ (most do) simply use a luer slip tip 10 or 12ml syringe.  In the case of a larger dog, you can mix it with their dog food or add a little chicken broth if they don’t like it on their food.  It’s very bland, so it will taste like whatever you add to it.