View Full Version : Fretful nights

7th October 2006, 05:50 PM
The last two nights have been upsetting. I dont know exactly what is going on, which is why they are so upsetting!

Willow goes to bed with us per usual, and then around 12:30 she gets restless and has to go out. Night 1 DH took her out, and then slept elsewhere, leaving the dogs with me. Willow settled back down, and then got restless again probably around 5. Out she went again, then returned to settle down. I thought perhaps it was just a one-off tummy ache, as the next day she was perfectly normal. Ate, drank, slept, played, etc.

Night 2 (last night) though, the whole thing repeated, except this time with the first hint of difficulty DH sods off to another room. So I took Willow out. She seemed to strain to poo, but nothing. After a bit she came back in, settled down for a while, and then had to go. The same occurred. She'd go out, attempt to poo, be unsuccessful, return to settle for a few hours, and then get up again.

Of cousre, I was getting really concerned that she has a blockage or something. So all night long I'm fretting about if she's seriously ill, if she needs surgery, etc. etc.

This morning I gave the girls their kibble, and they both ate like normal. (Very good eaters, my girls.) I needed a shower, so I told DH not to let the girls out until I was done as I wanted to go with them and make sure Willow was able to poo. (I figured the LEAST he could do was nothing, right?) Anyway, when I came out of the shower, I noticed a bit of poo on the carpet near the bed (first time EVER one of the girls has pooed there; i could tell it was Willow). I was at first relieved to see that she had pooed, though I didn't know if it happened sometime during the night or whlie I was in the shower (DH was not in any responsible mood to watch the girls--dont get me started!). Of course, I examined the poo. It had carrot in it and lots of fiber; Willow and Cedar have been gathering sticks lately when they are in the yard. Perhaps she's ingesting too much wood and constipating her?

Willow is now acting like her normal self. She's even testing me right now! (DH left a magazine on the floor, and she's desperate to shread it. She paws at it, I say no, she quits. She goes back a few minutes, paws at it looking to me to see if I'll say anything. Given DH's shitty behavior, I'm tempting to pretend I dont see anything and let her have some fun!)

I'm still going to watch her closely today to make certain her digestive tract is working properly. And of course there's going to be a crackdown on stick gathering (Cedar is going to be pissed!). Do you think I should be as worried as I am? (I'm known to be an excessive worrier). Anyone have any other ideas about what could be going on?

(Willow was just at the vet on Monday and got a clean bill of health except for having excessive tearing. She's been given drops to clear out her tear ducts, and her tearing is much better. Could the drops have something to do with it?? The vet isnt open or I'd phone. :S)

Cathy T
7th October 2006, 06:33 PM
(DH was not in any responsible mood to watch the girls--dont get me started!).

Boy can I relate to that one!! There are lots of times I don't even ask him to do anything. It's easier to do it myself than deal with his attitude (ie he got up this a.m. at 4:30, left the dogs in their crates, and I hear him call out at 5:30 for Shelby to be quiet...what the he** does he expect...of course she wants out!! Idiot!) I say let her have at that magazine!

Anyway, sounds like she's getting too many sticks. I would imagine she's getting constipated. I have to really watch my two with wood chips. I don't think you're worrying excessively especially as it's gone on for two nights. Don't have any constructive advice...just a little input.

7th October 2006, 06:51 PM
Is there anything I can give her to relieve the constipation? We're always talking on the boards how to firm up stool! Now how do I loosen them (within reason, of course--we dont want the squirts!)?

Cathy T
7th October 2006, 06:53 PM
No clue. Hopefully someone will pop in here with a suggestion.

Cathy Moon
7th October 2006, 07:22 PM
Chocolate's breeder told me that plain, canned pumpkin works for BOTH constipation and diarrhea. Because it's fiber - it regulates.

When reading your post, I would have exactly the same concerns as you, so I don't think you're worrying too much. Who else is going to make sure the pups are ok - we have to know their digestive systems are working properly. :flwr:

If there is a blockage, she would not poop, but she would probably be vomiting! Blockages are life threatening, so if you suspect it you could run her in to the emergency vet.

If you're absolutely positive that was her poop on the carpet, then you may want to try giving her a little bit of pumpkin. I don't think that a teaspoon of pumpkin could do any harm.

I would not let them chew on any sticks or mulch. Both Geordie and India have been very, very sick from that and acorns. We have put up green wire folding fences around the mulched areas of the yard, and I take stuff away from them if they find anything like that to chew on.

I hope Willow is feeling better and you both get a good night's sleep. :slp:

P.S. I'm not even going to bring up any OH stuff - I KNOW.... :bang:

7th October 2006, 07:31 PM
Pumpkin will help with hard stools or loose stools. It couldn't be her anal glands could it. If those are full and she is not able to express them naturally then they could be painful.

Cathy Moon
7th October 2006, 09:51 PM
Wow, that's good thinking Mary. The anal glands can become very painful; that could be an explanation for Willow's restless behavior.

India's have filled up before, and the vet had to express them. There was no way I could determine they were filled, either, because I tried looking. :?

8th October 2006, 05:05 AM
I had this exact same saga with Digby several months ago, mine was only over one night as I took him to the vet the next morning who then sent me to the emergency vet as they were only open half day and were equally worried as I.

Firstly I don't think you can ever be too worried with symptoms like these, blockages and the like can cause so much damage so quickly so I think it pays to be vigilant and monitor very carefully as you did. :thmbsup:
Also I agree with Cathy, if ever in any doubt get to your emergency vet.

In our case they did x rays on Digby and found bits of stone and stick in his intestine but the vet said they were too small to cause such discomfort ??
(obviously the vet has never tried to pass a stone or stick he has eaten on his walk !!!)

On the physical examination (finger up bum) the vet removed a small amount of stick which had worked its way down (obviously during the night) and sent us on our way unless any more complications then I was to take him back if needed.

I am convinced after Digby's instant change in disposition that the little peice of stick was the cause.

I have done lots to try and prevent my boys (Mainly digby) from eating stones and sticks but unfortunately apart from putting a muzzle on which seems so cruel I am out of options, everywhere we walk their is some crap to pick up so I just have to be vigilant and try and avoid it.

8th October 2006, 05:06 AM
Here's a few links from google. The second one says to give 1/4 tsp of pumpkin for a small dog, and work up from there gradually, which was what i was told by some fellow pet owners back when Zack had colitis from worms. Others who use it may not have any problem giving more. a quarter tsp was awfully small. Mike Richards (first link) says it's ok to give mild human laxatives. But probably it would be best to consult with a vet first. He also says to check to see if their long hair is blocking their rectum.


I can understand you being very worried. I would be. The worry may not be justified, (hopefully) but i would definitely worry. I'm wondering how she's doing now, Saturday night.

good luck, i hope whatever it is will soon pass. no pun intended... :sl*p:

8th October 2006, 06:47 AM
I'm not sure I get why you 've taken a 'shot' at hubby. You TOLD him not ot take/let them out....so he didn't.

That's the kinda thing that drives husbands crazy. We do what you tell us, and it's still not right. icon_whistling


8th October 2006, 11:33 AM
Poor Willow :hug: and poor you :hug: .

I must be extremely blessed in the hubby department as he gets up early every morning and lets the dogs out & gives them a treat :lotsaluv: He's not much good about messes though :roll: He tends to cover them with a piece of paper kitchen towel and then tells me that there's a mess downstairs :roll: :lol:

OK then. I never let my two have sticks as one of my friends dogs died from eating a stick :(

Do you have Weetabix breakfast cereal over there? If you do, I find that 1/2 a weetabix is an excellent 'laxative' for dogs. It doesn't give them the squits but will help them to go.

I think I'd still pop her along to see the Vet tomorrow if she's no better or she hasn't been properly :flwr:

Cathy, that's the problem with cages - my two aren't in them and so mob hubby as soon as he's up :lol: They either get a dog treat or he doesn't get a peaceful breakfast ..... ;) :lol:

9th October 2006, 01:59 PM
I am not sure if it is that time of year, Woody had the runs the other week and was straining - he is okay now, and then Busta has got it over the weekend - lose stools and alot of straining, plus he has been sick a couple of times and eating grass - he is being starved at the moment and will have his sensitive biscuits today...

9th October 2006, 02:41 PM
We had a similar problem with Daisy Boo about six months ago. She was straining to go to the toilet and actually cried out at times. The vet said she was very swollen around her anal area and gave her a painkilling injection and liquid paraffin. The liquid parrafin is basically a lubricant that makes it less painful to go to the loo while the inflammation clears up. About 5mls once a day does it until the problem clears - about a week. it was a complication of being in heat that caused it at that time.

However, I would go to the vet just to be sure.


9th October 2006, 03:06 PM
Thanks for the advice. Joanna, your experience sounds very similar to ours, though Willow is spayed. Still, perhaps there is swelling for some other reason?

Willow did better last night. Slept til 6, which is about normal. She is still straining, though. I've not seen her have a bowel movement in days, but I suspect I have missed something. She's still skittish about people being near when she goes to the bathroom, so if you get close she stops. (Did this when healthy, too). I suspect I missed something because she continues to eat and drink normally without any vomiting. So it HAS to be going somewhere! Still, she should not be straining like she is.

Anyway, she is going to the vet today. Hopefully we'll have an answer and a relatively easy way to treat the problem. I'll let you all know!

9th October 2006, 03:53 PM
Merlin was once very similar - the vet gave us this yeast stuff :yuk: called Katlick, you put it on your finger and let them lick it off - just the smallest amount and that got things going! ;) Perhaps vegemite would do the same?