Nom Nom logo

Learn : Pet Health Conditions

The Best Dog Food For Dogs With Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis, an inflammation of the pancreas, can be a scary condition to deal with as a pet parent. When the pancreas becomes inflamed, the inflammation can be intense and cause damage to surrounding tissues. In some cases, the cells of the pancreas can begin dying, which sets up even more inflammation. The pancreas is a critical organ for providing the enzymes that help to break down food and also for regulating blood sugar.

Signs of pancreatitis in dogs can range in severity depending on whether the inflammation is sudden (acute) or chronic and include: a hunched back, repeated vomiting, pain or distention of the abdomen (dog appears uncomfortable or bloated), diarrhea, loss of appetite, dehydration, weakness/lethargy, and/or fever. Most dogs will be uncomfortable in their belly, which may be noticeable when they are picked up.

Any dog can experience pancreatitis, but there are a few known risk factors such as a high-fat diet, diet, change, obesity, diabetes, a sudden introduction of a large amount of fatty food (this frequently occurs around the holidays), Cushing’s disease, and certain medications. There are also some breeds that are genetically predisposed, such as Miniature Schnauzers, Yorkshire Terriers, and Cocker Spaniels.

Treatment for pancreatitis is generally symptom-based, and will depend on how ill the dog is. Treatments include hospitalization at the veterinary clinic, and in more severe cases 24-hour intensive care and monitoring. This may involve intravenous fluids, pain medicine, anti-vomiting medication (antiemetics), antibiotics if a secondary bacterial infection is suspected, nutritional support, and other medications, depending on the dog’s symptoms.

Pancreatitis in dogs can absolutely be worsened by eating the wrong type of food. Problems can arise when dogs experience quick changes in either the amount or type of fat in their diet. Foods that are high in fats—for example, bacon, sausage, ribs, nuts, and fried fast foods—can lead to an upset stomach, diarrhea, or vomiting. In certain cases, eating unhealthy, high-fat foods like these can even cause pancreatitis. While it’s often difficult to say “no” to those puppy dog eyes, it’s best to avoid sneaking your dog any of these unhealthy treats. 

Is fresh food right for a dog with pancreatitis? It depends. Pancreatitis can either be acute or chronic. For chronic cases, it may be too high in fat. In acute cases, if your veterinarian has not advised a long term low-fat dietary regimen, a fresh diet like Nom Nom may be a great option for dog food for pancreas problems. If your dog has a history of pancreatitis, you should approach any diet change slowly - gradually introducing the new diet over a couple of weeks. Remember that many foods high in meat, like many fresh diets, are also high in fat. The target amount of fat for most dogs with pancreatitis is less than 30 grams for every 1000 calories of diet.

When you choose a food that's prepared in small batches, with fresh, high quality ingredients and no artificial fillers, you can see exactly what your pup is getting. Consider a made-from-scratch, small-batch dog food delivery service that emphasizes quality and purity if the nutrient profile is appropriate for your dog.

At Nom Nom, our recipes are all prepared fresh with whole ingredients and no artificial ingredients or fillers. They are portion-controlled and carefully balanced with the right amount of protein to help maintain muscle mass, strength, and support all the essential functions of the body. All of our fresh dog food recipes also include healthy oils, such as fish oil or sunflower oil, to promote healthy skin and combat allergies. 

If you have a dog with pancreas problems and are interested in trying fresh food as a dog pancreatitis diet, please make sure to discuss it with your vet first. Our team will also ask to learn more about your pet’s health history when determining if Nom Nom is right for you.

If your pet is experiencing symptoms of pancreatitis, please make sure to speak with your vet.