If you have a beloved, furry friend, it is important to know about any potential health dangers they may face. Pancreatitis happens when the pancreas becomes inflamed. At first this just causes mild symptoms like lack of appetite, but it can become rapidly fatal in pets. Though it is possible for most animals with vertebrates to get pancreatitis, this condition is far more common in certain types of animals.
What Causes Pancreatitis?
The pancreas is an organ in pets that manufactures digestive and metabolic enzymes. If these enzymes are mistakenly activated inside the pancreas, they began digesting pancreatic tissue instead of food. At minor levels, these digestive enzymes just causes painful inflammation, but if the pancreatic tissue is completely destroyed, it can be painful. There are a few different pet behaviors that can cause pancreatitis. Bacteria that migrates into the pancreatic duct can cause this condition, so animals with a parasitic or bacterial infection are at risk of developing pancreatitis. Certain types of pets are also more likely to spontaneously develop it after eating fatty foods.
How Can You Tell If Your Pet Has Pancreatitis?
At first, an animal with pancreatitis just loses their appetite, vomits, has diarrhea, and seems to lack energy. As the condition progresses, pets might start to experience pain, have a fever, lose weight, and get dehydrated. Depending on the type of pet you have, it may be difficult to tell if they have pancreatitis, since certain animals and breeds are more susceptible to the more severe version of the disease. Dogs are more likely to experience pain and vomiting, while cats may just seem to lack appetite and feel tired.
What Types of Pets Are Most Likely to Get Pancreatitis?
Cats and dogs are the most common pets to get pancreatitis, but it can occasionally occur in birds or rabbits. Reptiles and amphibians can technically develop pancreatitis, but it is quite rare and hard to diagnose in those types of pets. However, veterinarians do caution that pancreatitis among reptiles may be underdiagnosed just because their symptoms are not as obvious. Among cats, pancreatitis tends to be a mild side effect of a bacterial or parasitic infection, and they typically recover once the infection is treated. However, dogs are very likely to get the acute version of the condition, and sadly, they are the type of pet that is most likely to get this condition in the first place.
What Increases Your Pet’s Risk of Getting Pancreatitis?
There are certain things that make a pet more likely to get pancreatitis. Since there is a bacterial component, cats infected with toxoplasmosis or parasitic flukes commonly come down with mild pancreatitis. Dogs who are often fed food that is not dog food are also more likely to develop pancreatitis, and it frequently occurs after a dog eats table scraps or manages to consume food from the trash. Dogs that are either purebred or mixed-breed versions of poodles and schnauzers are particularly susceptible to pancreatitis, possibly because of the genetic makeup of their internal organs. Schnauzers are particularly prone to getting pancreatitis, so many veterinarians recommend that people who have schnauzer closely monitor the dog and get regular checkups. Pets that are middle aged or older are more likely to develop the condition, and it is also more common among overweight pets. Therefore, it is very important to be aware of the symptoms of pancreatitis if you have a high-risk pet.