My Westie of 14 years and three months has very rapidly developed a condition of the kidneys.
I'm trying to help my Westie with benazepril 5 mg, but he was also prescribed Dried Aluminuim Hydroxide. Because he simply won't eat anything at all I can't get this into his system. I also have a Antepsin Suspension to help line his stomach and alleviate his sickness.
I know he is an old dog, but I just feel that this is too much medication. I have also noticed that since I am squirting the Antepsin suspension directly into his mouth, his saliva is very sticky, more like treacle and extremely smelly. I thought this may be due to an abscess in his mouth but on close inspection his gums and teeth look okay for a dog of 14.
I know I can save him and am not ready to let him go yet, I know this is quite selfish, but he is has been so strong all his life I am desperate to get some nutrition into him and I am sure he can get help.
Should I use Dried Aluminuim Hydroxide as well as Antepsin as they both appear to be doing a similar function of reducing acid in his stomach? He does not appear to have constipation but it is his appetite I am worried about and from what I can gather benazepril should improve his appetite.
Can anyone help?
Mark Almond, Manchester
Richard Allport, vet, advises…
Interestingly, Benazepril is licensed to treat congestive heart disease in dogs, but not kidney disease. Even more interestingly, some lists of side effects for Benazepril in dogs include loss of appetite and nausea (although for cats usually an increase in appetite is noted). However, if your vet has prescribed any medication, don’t stop giving it without discussing it with your vet first.
Without knowing the extent of the kidney problem it’s difficult to suggest what medication could be stopped and what else used, but a good natural anti gastric irritant is Slippery Elm powder, and a good natural way of stimulating the appetite is to ask your vet to give weekly injections of Vitamin B12 for a few weeks, and to dispense Nutriplus gel. This is a tasty gel, full of vitamins and minerals, that usually gets dogs eating pretty quickly.
Offer him warm food, consisting of attractive morsels of minced beef, or chicken livers, or anything you know he would really enjoy. In addition there are homoeopathic and herbal kidney support medicines available (but you would need to ask your vet to refer you to a holistic vet to get these formulated and prescribed).
Don’t give up on your Westie – I’m sure there’s life in the old dog yet!