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Northern Rhode Island Animal Hospital - Pancreatitis
Everyone loves the holiday season, especially the wide variety of great food and desserts. Did you know that a lot of these foods that we love are not good for our furry companions? This time of year is when we most commonly see animals coming in for Gastro-intestinal issues, such as vomiting and diarrhea, and these are often caused by an animal getting into or being given food by their owners (or by Grandma slipping food under the table). One of the conditions that can occur from this is called pancreatitis.
So, What is Pancreatitis?
The pancreas is an organ located under the stomach and one of its jobs is secreting digestive enzymes to break up food. Pancreatitis is a condition that occurs when there is inflammation of the pancreas and is caused when the pancreatic digestive enzymes are released too quickly, usually in response to a stimulus, which could be ingesting table scraps, drugs, toxin or even trauma. Pancreatitis can be painful and in some cases, lif-threatening. The most common signs of pancreatitis are vomiting, diarrhea, anorexia, fever and painful abdomen. This is diagnosed primarily through blood work, radiographs and ultrasound. Most patients diagnosed with this require hospitalization, continuous IV fluids, along with antibiotics and pain medication in hospital.
Pancreatitis can often be avoided by staying away from fatty food and treats for your animals. Fat trimming and bones shouldn't be given to your pet, especially from turkey, ham and sausage. Ensure that trash cans are sealed and foods are not let unattended on countertops so curious pets cannot help themselves. Ask house guests to refrain from giving animals any table scraps. Although it is tempting, keep in mind that just a few bites of something could cause major health issues for your pet. Stick to pet-friendly holiday treats and enjoy a healthier and happy holiday season!