German Shepherds are prone to an array of stomach-related health issues. Here are five of the most common of these conditions.
German Shepherds suffer from diarrhea due to several factors. The most notorious of these are parasites and food intolerance. If your German Shepherd contracts diarrhea, your first order of business should be to have your vet check for potential parasites in your pup’s gut.
If your vet ascertains no parasite has found its way to your dog’s stomach, the next likely culprit is your German Shepherd’s diet. There’s probably an ingredient or two in their food that is triggering their diarrhea, such as fats, grains, milk, and heavy fiber. Trial and error are inevitable until you and your vet get to pinpoint the exact cause.
Other possible triggers of diarrhea include anxiety and overeating. German Shepherds are susceptible to this affliction given their highly sensitive digestive system.
2. Eosinophilic gastroenteritis
Eosinophilic gastroenteritis refers to stomach and intestine inflammation in dogs. Watery and chronic diarrhea is one of the most notorious symptoms of this disease. Other signs include lack of appetite, vomiting, and weight loss.
By providing your vet with your dog’s stool sample, this disease can be either diagnosed or ruled out. As for its treatment, there’s steroids and other forms of medications aimed at reducing inflammation in your dog’s digestive system. This condition manifests similar symptoms to inflammatory bowel disease.
German Shepherds are highly susceptible to developing ulcers, which are sores that appear on intestinal and stomach linings after suffering breakage. Ulcers can be quite painful.
Signs of stomach ulcers include loss of appetite, vomiting, weakness, weight loss, bloody stool, and anemia. Treating ulcers require taking care of underlying health conditions, as well as bringing your pup’s body fluid back to a healthy level.
4. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency
When your dog’s pancreas stops producing sufficient digestive enzymes, the result is the stomach condition called Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, or EPI. This is a serious condition considering how these enzymes are crucial to breaking down starches, protein, and fats. German Shepherds suffering from EPI are unable to process the nutrients from ingested food efficiently.
If not properly and immediately treated, EPI can lead to malnourishment, and, worse, death due to starvation. Symptoms of this disease include weight loss, despite your dog eating the same amount of food they’ve always eaten. Other symptoms of the disease include flatulence, frequent pooping, and runny or soft stool.
A simple blood test will allow your vet to know if your German Shepherd has EPI. Remedies include vitamin supplements, specialized diet, and antibiotics.
5. Toxic gut syndrome
German Shepherds are more prone to toxic gut syndrome compared to other dog breeds. Keep in mind that this ailment is potentially fatal. Here prevention is always better and cheaper than cure.
German Shepherds usually have a manageable level of clostridium in their intestine. A problem arises when these bacteria reproduce excessively. When this happens, your dog is at high risk and must be taken to the vet immediately.