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Pyloric Obstruction/Stenosis

By: Dr. Nicholas Trout

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Your pet will have been shaved along his belly and have an abdominal incision. Check the site for swelling, redness or discharge on a daily basis. If you have concerns do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian. If licking of the incision occurs, an Elizabethan collar may become necessary. The staples or stitches will need to be removed in 10 to 14 days.

It will be important to monitor eating and drinking. Offer small amounts of water at a time rather than filling a bowl full, which may cause your dog to gorge and vomit. Do the same with solid food, offering the same total amount of food each day as normal, but, when possible, divide it into several feedings. After a week or so, you can resume your regular feeding regime.

Continue with antacids, antibiotics, and any other treatments sent home with your pet.

Allow your dog to stay quiet and rested for the first few weeks after surgery, just taking slow leash walks, and eliminating anything excessive. Be particularly observant of eating and drinking habits, especially if your have more than one pet.

Do not offer your pet any chew toys, pig's ears, rawhide, bones or anything of that nature for several weeks after the procedure. If vomiting recurs, even sporadic, then you should not hesitate to consult with your veterinarian.

Prevention In-depth

The exact cause of pyloric obstruction or stenosis is unknown. It is more commonly seen in the short-faced brachycephalic breeds of dogs but clearly only a small number have this problem. Because there is no known genetic component to the disorder, knowing whether the sire and dam of a brachephalic puppy has had this disease would be of no benefit.

Providing a safe environment for your dog with regard to potential gastric foreign bodies and ensuring your pet is properly vaccinated will decrease the likelihood of some of the causes of vomiting that may be mistaken for pyloric obstruction or stenosis.

All animals may occasionally vomit, but should this persist or be intermittently recurrent, particularly in a young animal, then you should seek immediate veterinary attention. It does not take long for a puppy to become extremely dehydrated and sick with frequent bouts of vomiting.

Early diagnosis of pyloric obstruction or stenosis and appropriate surgical correction has a good prognosis that should not have any long-standing effects on your dog's digestive system.

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