Sudden bloody diarrhea and vomiting
Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis (HGE) is an acute (sudden) GI upset that can cause severe illness very quickly. Signs may include:
- Profuse, watery diarrhea that is bloody
- Vomiting, which may contain blood or looks like coffee grounds
- Loss of appetite or decreased food intake
- Lethargy or weakness
- Dehydration, noticeable dry gums, sunken eyes, or increased thirst
- Abdominal pain or discomfort
- Pale gums or mucous membranes
- Rapid or difficulty breathing
If you notice any of these signs or have concerns about your pet's health, consult a veterinarian. Seek immediate veterinary attention if you suspect your pet has hemorrhagic gastroenteritis. Early detection and intervention can improve the chances of successful management.
When you visit your veterinarian for concerns related to hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, the following may occur:
- Physical examination: The veterinarian will perform a thorough physical examination of your pet, checking for any abnormalities in the abdomen, hydration status, and overall health.
- Diagnostic testing: Diagnostic testing such as blood tests, fecal examination, and abdominal imaging (e.g., X-rays or ultrasound) may be recommended to evaluate the presence and severity of hemorrhagic gastroenteritis and rule out other possible causes.
- Treatment options: Treatment options for hemorrhagic gastroenteritis can vary depending on the severity and underlying cause. It may involve fluid therapy to address dehydration, medications to control vomiting or diarrhea, supportive care to alleviate symptoms, and in severe cases, hospitalization with intravenous fluids and medications.
Your veterinary healthcare team will partner with you to decide which treatment option is best for your pet's and your family’s specific condition and situation.
Here are some things you can do at home to help promote digestive health and potentially minimize the risk of gastrointestinal disorders:
- Maintain a balanced diet: Provide your pet with a nutritionally balanced diet appropriate for their age, breed, and health condition. Consult with your veterinarian for dietary recommendations.
- Avoid sudden diet changes: Gradually transition your pet's food if you need to change their diet to minimize the risk of gastrointestinal upset.
- Prevent access to harmful substances: Keep household chemicals, toxic plants, and human medications out of your pet's reach to prevent accidental ingestion.
- Practice good hygiene: Regularly clean your pet's food and water bowls, provide fresh water, and practice proper waste disposal to minimize the risk of bacterial contamination.
Please note that the information provided here is not a substitute for professional veterinary advice. If you suspect your pet has hemorrhagic gastroenteritis or any other health concerns, consult your veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment.