Dear VetBabble: Could Giardia treatment still cause diarrhea even after a negative retest?
I’ve treated my dog for giardia with an antibiotic, but she still has diarrhea after two weeks. She’s been retested, and the results came back clear. What should I do next to address the issue and help her get back to normal?
In this article, we’ll discuss various reasons why your pet may still have diarrhea even after receiving treatment for giardia and testing negative. We’ll also provide possible steps you can take to help resolve the issue.
1. Withholding Food and Water
When your dog is experiencing diarrhea, it’s important to give their digestive system a chance to recover. As recommended by some veterinarians, withholding food and water for 12-24 hours might help your pet’s gut to reset itself. However, always consult with your veterinarian before withholding any essential nourishments, as every case is unique, and they’ll know what’s best for your pet’s specific situation.
2. Bland Diet and Transitioning
Once your dog’s digestive system has had a chance to recover, you can try introducing a bland diet, which typically consists of 1/3 plain boiled boneless chicken and 2/3 plain white rice, as it’s gentle on your dog’s stomach. Feed your dog small, frequent meals, waiting at least an hour between feedings.
Continue with the bland diet until your dog’s stool returns to normal, then slowly transition your dog back to their regular diet over a few days. If your dog’s diarrhea doesn’t improve, it’s essential to contact your veterinarian for further guidance.
3. Further Testing and Treatment
While giardia is a common cause of diarrhea in dogs, other issues might be contributing to your pet’s ongoing symptoms. For instance, food allergies could cause diarrhea, so you might consider trying a food trial with your veterinarian’s guidance.
Additionally, malabsorption issues could lead to persistent diarrhea in dogs. You may want to consider contacting a gastrointestinal laboratory, such as the one at Texas A&M, to rule out these specific disorders.
Submitting another stool sample to your vet is also advisable to ensure there aren’t any other intestinal parasites present. Further testing and treatment, such as using Metronidazole for dogs and cats, might be necessary to resolve the underlying issue.
In summary, if your dog is still experiencing diarrhea after giardia treatment and testing negative, it’s crucial to consult your veterinarian for advice. They may recommend withholding food and water, introducing a bland diet, or performing further tests to determine the cause of the ongoing symptoms. With the proper guidance, you can help your pet get back to feeling their best!