Hemorrhagic GastroEnteritis (HGE) in Dogs

Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis is a dog disease characterized by severe vomiting and bloody diarrhea. Symptoms are typically serious, and HGE can be fatal if not treated. HGE is most common in young and adult dogs, but particularly small dogs such as Toy Poodle and Miniature Schnauzer.

When doesHemorrhagic gastroenteritis(HE) Occur?

HGE typically occurs anytime from 12 to 24 hours after dietary indiscretion. The common symptoms include:

  • Skipping a meal.
  • Vomiting and bloody diarrhea.

These symptoms can occur within a few hours of each other. It is important to note that HE is not a contagious disease.

What CausesHemorrhagic gastroenteritis(HGE)?

The exact cause of Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis HGE remains unknown.

How is Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis(HGE) diagnosed?

Diagnosis of HGE is one of exclusion, meaning that all potential causes of bloody vomiting and/or bloody diarrhea must first be considered. Any of such potential causes include:

  • Ulcers
  • Wounds
  • Gastrointestinal or obstructive tumors
  • Infectious diseases
  • Coagulation disorders

Evaluation of these other factors can include tests such as complete blood count, biochemical blood analysis, urinalysis, x-rays, coagulation tests, fecal ultrasound examination, or endoscopic (fiberoptic) gastrointestinal tract evaluation.Since the expense of all such tests may be high, it is often best to handle the dog with compassionate treatment for a few days and see whether the symptoms can resolve.

Treatment of Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis (HGE)

The conservation of circulating blood volume and the improvement of dehydration are two main concerns. Intravenous fluid therapy is necessary, initially given at a rapid rate, and then more slowly. Fluid therapy is mostly continued for one or two days or more. Antibiotics are usually given as well.

There is a significant change when treated early. After one or two days, oral fluids should be added, supplemented by a low fat, easily digestible diet, until the gastrointestinal tract recovers. Usually, there are no recurrences or long-term effects following recovery from HGE.