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Soph the Vet, may I ask you a question?

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I have a black lab. She will be 5 in October. We feed her 2 times a day, and she always ate as soon as we put food in her dish. And then still acted hungry as you know labs do! For at least a month or two now, she very rarely eats her breakfast. In the early afternoon she will eat some of it if I coax her. Usually she will eat her dinner without any problem. But once in a while we need to encourage then too. She will eat dog treats if we give her those, and she would eat our food too, but we don't give her table scraps unless something falls on the floor.

I don't know if these things matter. but I thout I would mention we live in Ohio where it has been close to 90 alot. But she is an indoor dog, and we have air conditioning. She goes outside and likes to eat things such as little sticks. We have noticed her picking up worms and trying to eat them lately also. She has always been know to eat things that are not food!

Three months ago we had to have our cat put to sleep. Sasha (our dog) seemed to eat and act fine for about a week after, then she sometimes seemed sad and changed her eating. I don't know if this could have anything to do with her problem.

She seems fine other than the eating. She sleeps like a normal dog, and has her very happy, playful times.

Oh, another problem she has is she is totally scared of thunder and fireworks and loud things like that. Is they anything that we can give her in times when she is scared that is safe for her?

We are going on vacation in September and we will be putting her in a kennel. Do dogs usually do ok in a kennel? And I think I heard you mention some dogs have a reaction to the shots they need to be boarded. Do I need to be concerned about this?

I am sorry this got so long. Thank you for your help!

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I work at a rabbit shelter, and a lot of the buns are eating less since it got hot. (They'll all chow down on fresh greens or a carrot, but they're not as interested in their pellets as usual.) Some of them are not affected at all, though, and neither are our two house rabbits.



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I'm not a vet either but have always had pets. I agree with the others that I wouldn't worry about a suppressed appetite when the weather gets hot. We kennel our dogs at the vet when we go on vacation. They do just fine. Ours doesn't require any additional shots to kennel the dogs but does give the bordetella vaccine (I probably spelled that wrong). The lay term is "kennel cough." This vaccine is just squirted into their nose, like the flu mist is given to people. One time, we had a dog that developed kennel cough after being boarded, despite the vaccine. It's a respiratory illness and the vet gave us some medication that set him right in about a week.


We did notice that our dachshund gained weight every time he was kenneled, despite that we left our own food along with feeding instructions. It turned out that the vet assistants thought he was cute and were slipping him treats. :tongue_smilie:



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Sorry, I just checked the boards and saw this. I'll take questions anytime!

First, the shots usually required for kennels are rabies, distemper/parvo combo, and bordatella (kennel cough). The distemper/parvo comes with or without leptospirosis as well and that will cause a reaction in certain small breed dogs like dachsunds, yorkies, etc. Labs rarely have any reactions to routine vaccinations. The kennel cough vax is much like our human flu shot in that it only has certain strains in it so your dog is never 100% protected against all strains of kennel cough.

As for storm anxiety I am prescribing alprazolam these days. It is a benzodiazopene (in the valium family) and is safer and has less negative side effects than acepromazine (the old standby). Your vet should be able to get you what you need.

If your dog has anxiety issues it is certainly possible that the cat's absence is noticed and has affected the appetite, could be hot weather too.

Here are some other things to look for.

Does your dog have a fever? Rectal temp. should be between 99.5F and 101.5F, even up to 102 if he's been running around.

Is your dog more lethargic than normal? Any lameness?

Are the gums nice and pink and moist? Anemia can cause odd dietary behavior. Jaundice may indicate liver problems which can also cause inappetance.

Has your dog been on heartworm prevention? Hope so:D. HW disease usually causes lethargy and a cough but inappetance too.

Any vomiting or diarrhea indicating a more serious GI problem?

Is your dog food fresh? Sometimes we buy such huge bags and they go bad.

Have you tried switching dog foods? If so do it over a few days time.

Is there weight loss? This could just be from decreased food consumption but could also indicate other things.

Is your dog obese? More prone to diabetes.

See how so many things could be going on with a 5yr. old lab? Your vet should do a good physical exam and may end up recommending a minimum data base (i.e. Complete Blood Count, Chem. profile, and a urinalysis) and maybe do a heartworm and Lymes test. The thyroid is also a consideration in middle age and if your lab is low may need thyroxine supplementation to increase metabolism.

Don't know if any of that helped!


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Thank you for responding. I took her temp. this morning. It was 100.2. She doesn't seem lethargic. Her gums appear pink and moist as best as I can tell because she has alot of black in her gum area. She has no vomiting or diarrhea. We thought her food may have been the problem, so we opened a new bag (of the same kind) and still no change. So we don't think food is the problem. She has not had weight loss. And she is not obese. She weighs about 83lbs.

She has had problems in the past of having worms. Could this be a possibility?

So, do you think we need to get her to the vet? She has to go in about a month anyway for ber boarding vaccines. Should she go sooner, or wait until then?

Thank you again. You are so kind!

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