My Dog has Acid Reflux. Is My Dog Going to Be Ok?FamilyPet
Over time, acid reflux can damage the lining of the esophagus and cause inflammation which is called, Esophagitis. In more severe cases, the acid can cause deeper damage to the esophagus in the form of ulcers. If an ulcer progresses far enough, it can reach the blood vessels in the wall of the esophagus, which will cause it to bleed, and even rupture.
There are other diseases that may have similar symptoms to acid reflux disease, including Megaesophagus. This occurs when the esophagus becomes distended and no longer functions properly. Other diseases of the mouth and throat, including cancer, are also possible. Therefore, it is as important to rule out these other causes as it is to definitively diagnose acid reflux.
Once your dog is diagnosed with acid reflux, steps will need to be taken to repair and prevent further damage to the esophagus. Dietary changes will need to be made reduce the recurrence of acid reflux. This can be a painful disease that may make your dog be reluctant or refuse to eat. Careful monitoring will help prevent further complications.
The primary treatment of acid reflux disease is dietary. A diet high in fat can contribute to the problem. Reducing the amount of fat in your pet’s diet may help to strengthen the sphincter that separates the stomach and esophagus. A high protein diet can also stimulate the production of stomach acids. Avoid feeding your dog fatty table scraps and consider changing them to a low fat, low-protein dog food.
In some cases, your veterinarian may prescribe medication that will coat the lining of the esophagus to help protect it from further damage. Additional medications may help reduce the acid production, but you should avoid giving any over the counter human medications without the advice of a veterinarian.
Following your vet’s guidance and adjusting your dog’s diet and lifestyle as directed will help prevent further complications from acid reflux and keep your pet happy and pain free.