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Stomach and Intestinal Inflammation in Dogs

Eosinophilic Gastroenteritis in Dogs

In dogs, eosinophilic gastroenteritis is an inflammatory disorder affecting the stomach and intestines. The condition gets its name from the infiltration of a particular type of white blood cell called eosinophil into the lining of the stomach and intestines. Eosinophilic gastroenteritis can impact both dogs and cats.

Symptoms

Symptoms and manifestations of eosinophilic gastroenteritis are typically observed in dogs under 5 years old, although dogs of any age can be affected. Breeds such as German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Soft-coated Wheaten Terriers, and Shar Peis may have a predisposition to the condition. Common symptoms include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss

Causes

  • Parasites
  • Immune-mediated factors, which may be linked to food allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, or adverse drug reactions
  • Systemic mastocytosis, a disorder characterized by mast cell infiltration of body tissues
  • Hypereosinophilic syndrome
  • Eosinophilic leukemia
  • Idiopathic eosinophilic gastroenteritis, where the cause is unknown

Diagnosis

To confirm the diagnosis, a veterinarian typically examines your dog’s feces for parasites. Often, deworming with a broad-spectrum product is administered to help exclude parasites. Routine blood tests, including a complete blood cell count and blood chemistry profile, as well as urinalysis, may also be conducted to detect abnormalities in organ function and blood cells.

Imaging techniques such as radiographs (X-rays) and abdominal ultrasonography may be utilized to examine the intestinal tract more comprehensively. Additionally, dietary trials may be conducted to diagnose food allergies or hypersensitivities.

Definitive diagnosis involves collecting samples of the stomach and intestines for biopsy through procedures such as endoscopy or exploratory surgery. If idiopathic eosinophilic gastroenteritis is suspected, diagnosis is achieved by ruling out other potential causes.

Treatment

If an underlying cause is identified, it’s essential to prioritize its treatment. For instance, parasites are addressed with a suitable dewormer, while food allergies and hypersensitivities are managed through an appropriate diet.

In cases where protein loss occurs from the intestines, special fluid products called colloids may be needed. Fluid therapy is necessary to correct dehydration.

Steroids like prednisone or prednisolone are commonly prescribed for the treatment of eosinophilic gastroenteritis in dogs. Other medications that might be required include anti-emetics to alleviate vomiting and nausea.

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