The pancreas produces insulin, which regulates the metabolism of sugar and enzymes, which aid in food digestion. When enzymes are released prematurely, the pancreas begins to digest itself, resulting in inflammation, or pancreatitis. Symptoms can include loss of appetite, vomiting, pain and diarrhea. Depending on the severity of the condition, different treatments may be prescribed.
Withholding of Food and Water
Because the ingestion of food stimulates the pancreas and exacerbates the problem, food and water are withheld for two or more days.
To prevent dehydration, fluids must be provided intravenously.
Medications to prevent vomiting or relieve pain may be administered. Antibiotics may also be prescribed.
In very rare cases where medical therapy is not successful, surgery may be necessary.
Dogs that have recovered from pancreatitis should be placed on a diet that excludes high-fat items and promotes a healthy weight.