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Nicole R

So I have been led to this forum because my Aussie Doberman mix, Buddy, started these gulping episodes, and they stress me out so bad. His first attack started shortly after he turned a year old. He got the gulps and did the frantic swallowing, licking thing, but this was also accompanied by a bad allergic reaction where he had hives on his mouth and testicles. Took him to the vet, they gave him a shot to clear everything up and he was fine for the next month or so until last week.

I’m wondering if these gulping episodes are stress related because they didn’t start again until after a very scary incident happened with one of our other dogs. We have a Rhodesian Ridgeback who slipped out of his collar while on a walk and ran into the street and was hit by a car. Fortunately he is okay, but he did have to get a few staples in his leg and it was just a super scary and intense situation all around. The very next night after that happened, Buddy had a violent attack where he licked, gulped, tried to eat carpet, made the most aweful retching sound and vomitted 4-5 times. I gave him Pepto and Benedryl and after about 2-3 hours he finally calmed down. He started doing this on a daily basis so I took him to the vet and they are saying Acid Reflux, and prescribed Faotidine and Calming Care Purina Pro Plan. I also put him on a sensitive skin and stomach food, just in case it is food related, and I’m feeding him smaller meals, 3 times a day. I also give him one Claratin a day because he does have post nasal drip and is allergy prone.

We are on day three of this regimen, and Buddy still gulps sometimes throughout the day, but he is not vomiting anymore, and he is keeping his food down which is great. He does seem to get more anxious in the evening, and I’ve found that when the gulping and licking starts to escalate and he’s trying to eat the carpet, I put him in a pen we have set up in our back room and he calms instantly. Everything stops and he just chills out. He slept in the pen for a good portion of his puppyhood, so I think it’s a safe haven for him and definitely stops the episodes in it’s tracks. Which makes me wonder if they are neurological or anxiety triggered? If so, is giving him Pepcid and anti-acid even necessary? I like the calming probiotic the vet prescribed, but I really don’t want to keep drugging my dog, and I’m truly at a loss here and not sure how to proceed. Thanks for reading my story.