Most patients affected with megacolon will need to be hospitalized for initial fluid therapy, both to rehydrate the body and to correct electrolyte imbalances. The colon can then be gently evacuated. Your veterinarian will administer anesthesia to your dog, and then manually inject warm water enemas and water-soluble jelly, allowing for the easy extraction of feces with a gloved finger or sponged forceps. If the problem is recurrent or especially severe, and is not responding to medical management, as in the case of irreversible colonic inertia, surgery may be necessary to repair the colon. Most dog can be cured of recurrent megacolon after undergoing subtotal colectomy surgery.
Living and Management
For dogs suffering from megacolon, exercise and regular activity are strongly encouraged for the health and strength of their digestive and abdominal muscles. A low-residue, high fiber diet may also help to prevent recurrences of megacolon. Another alternative is to supplement your dog’s regular maintenance diet with veterinarian approved fiber supplements or canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling). Avoid feeding any bones to your dog to protect against potential injuries to the colon when bones are swallowed, and to prevent clumps of partially digested bone from blocking the intestinal tract.
The area found between the muscles and the endings of the nerves
The term for a colon that is enlarged abnormally
Examination through feeling
The very end of the large intestine
An in-depth examination of the properties of urine; used to determine the presence or absence of illness
A term for a type of neoplasm that is made up of lymphoid tissue; these masses are usually malignant in nature
A record of body structures using an x-ray
To mechanically introduce a substance into a living thing
A medical condition in which the body has lost fluid or water in excessive amounts
The exiting of excrement from the body; bowel movements.
The whole system involved in digestion from mouth to anus
The process of making something larger by dilating or stretching it
The end of the gastrointestinal tract; the opening at the end of the tract.
The term for the last part of the small intestine, between the jejunum and the large intestine.
An increase in the number of bad white blood cells