Weight loss is a physical condition that results from a negative caloric balance. This usually occurs when the body uses and/or excretes essential nutrients faster than it can consume them. Essentially more calories are being burned than are being taken in. Weight loss is considered clinically important when it exceeds 10 percent of the normal body weight and is not associated with fluid loss.

There are numerous causes of weight loss including anorexia, poor digestion, poor absorption of nutrients, metabolic disorders, neuromuscular diseases, heart disease and cancer.

Diagnosis and Treatment Notes:

  • Weight loss is typically diagnosed through history and physical examination findings. It is important to confirm that weight loss has occurred through a review of the pet’s previous body weights. Determining the cause of the weight loss requires further testing such as bloodwork, abdominal x-rays, abdominal ultrasound, urinalysis and fecal examinations.
  • Treatment depends on the underlying disorder causing the weight loss, severity of the disease, your individual pet, and your veterinarian. Supportive treatments may include force-feeding, appetite stimulants, vitamin/mineral supplementation, or in severe cases, temporary intravenous nutrition for those animals that cannot take food orally. Discuss additional treatment details when your pet is evaluated and the underlying condition causing weight loss is diagnosed. .


What to Watch for*:

  • Proven weight loss
  • Loss of body condition/muscle mass
  • Poor hair coat
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Regurgitation
  • Difficulty swallowing

* Please notify us if you notice any of the above signs or if you have any questions!

Dear Valued Clients

During these challenging times, there have been some unforeseen changes at The Big Easy Animal Hospital. I cannot express enough my sincere apology for any inconvenience you have experienced at The Big Easy during these times. As we strive to make the practice safe to protect everyone including you, your family, and our Big Easy team and their families, I’ve decided to make certain changes while we are under this pandemic. These changes will be temporary.


Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday:
Walk Ins: Check-in starts at 9:45am.There are a limited amount of patients we can accept. Our receptionists will be happy to assist you with options to help guide you and your pet(s).)


Saturday Hours

Saturdays will be TECHNICIAN APPOINTMENTS only. These will include boosters, bloodwork, nail trims, certain diagnostics, etc. There will not be a veterinarian on site. While I understand these changes can be inconvenient, I have listed local veterinary clinics that we have contacted and are open to see walk-ins throughout the week and Saturdays as well. For life threatening emergencies that occur outside business hours, please contact the following 24-hour animal hospitals below.

Please, be safe and healthy.

Thank you all for your understanding. -Aileen Ruiz, DVM


24 Hour Emergency Care:


Pittsburgh Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center

807 Camp Horne Road
Pittsburgh, PA



4224 Northern Pike
Monroeville, PA

VCA Castle Shannon Animal Hospital

3610 Library Road
Pittsburgh, PA

Veterinarians Accepting Walk in Care:

Penn Animal Hospital

2205 Penn Avenue

North Boros Veterinary Hospital

2255 Babcock Blvd



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