Gastrointestinal diseases often occur in dogs especially because of the indiscriminate manner in which they consume anything which is edible. The consequences of this behavior often results in the animal vomiting and having loose stools. There have been many instances where a dog has eaten something which has caused a severe blockage to its gastrointestinal tract.

Pancreatitis is a common disorder in dogs and can manifest itself as being either chronic or acute. The acute form of this disease could be life threatening to the dog. Older overweight dogs are more susceptible to contracting this disease.

It is not known exactly what causes pancreatitis in dogs but what occurs is that the pancreas which is a gland in the dog’s abdomen gets severely inflamed. The pancreas itself assists the body in metabolizing nutrients and sugars that have been consumed. It produces the enzymes which are required to digest food properly and also insulin which help the body to store amino acids and glucose in the body.

There are certain factors that are believed to be the cause of pancreatitis in dogs. Being obese, absorbing contaminated food or water, excessive proportion of fat in the bloodstream of the body, consequences of a viral or bacterial infection, diabetes, absorption of certain drugs or toxins have all been identified as possible causes of canine pancreatitis. A chronic form of this disease also occurs in cats and is often difficult to recognize.

Dog Behavior: Breed and Genes

Pancreatitis has no distinct symptoms which make it more recognizable then other digestive problems. Diagnosis of this disease is often determined by a veterinarian who has taken blood samples of the dog which have been sent away to the laboratory for analysis.

Treatment of a dog diagnosed with pancreatitis is supportive. The pancreas needs time to heal itself on its own. Very often a dog would be treated by a veterinarian who would take the animal off being fed orally for several days and thus allow the gastrointestinal system and pancreas time to rest and recover on their own.

Once cured of this disease a dog is normally placed on a high fiber and low fat diet to prevent the disease reoccurring.